25 May 2006 ~ 9 Comments

Serving Fois-gras

Fois Gras Plate Picture

Fois-gras is always something I look forward to! And along the way, I’ve found a few things you can do to make the experience even more pleasurable. Fois-gras is a delicacy that carries quite a bit of controversy. More proof to that is the recent ban enacted in Chicago. “Fortunately, as I understand it, this is limited to restaurants, but still!”  How can someone decide what I can and can not relish in? This is too unfathomable. At least you can still enjoy it at home.
Duck or Goose?

This is one you’ll have to decide for yourself. There is a distinct difference, and I have a small preference for goose, but duck is still a close second in my book.

Serve the fois-gras at room temperature

For the longest time, I had been serving fois-gras right out the fridge. What a mistake that was. One day, dinner was late and the fois-gras had been sitting on the table for longer that I thought it should have. But what a difference it made. The flavor was awesome!  I guess the cold puts your taste buds to sleep and hides the full flavor!  Since then, I take it out of the fridge at least an hour before serving. One thing where the cold helps is to remove the fat. A lot easier and less messy to do when the fat is solid.

Serve with lightly toasted white bread

My preference goes for sliced Country White French Bread (as close to “pain de mie” as I found). Somewhat halfway between sour white bread and regular white bread. And it only needs to be lightly toasted so it starts to turn golden brown and the surface is a bit hard.  It is easier to put a piece of fois-gras and hold it flat.  Presumably, you are not supposed to spread fois-gras on your toast, just cut chunks of it and put it on your toast (I suppose,  this is as opposed to pate that is meant to be spread, and to remind us that fois-gras is so much more than pate. If anyone knows, would you let me know?).

Serve with chilled Sauternes

As if fois-gras was not good enough, add a chilled Sauternes. This is sure to turn your ravishing experience into pure decadence :)  A nice Sauternes and fois-gras go so well together this is truly unbelievable.  If you’ve never had sauternes, you should try it, even by itself. Sauternes is a late harvest, quite sweet, white wine from the Sauternais, near Bordeaux in France, and they use a special method to achieve that unforgettable taste (plus is usually ages really well to bout).  Even though a Chateau d’Yquem is really out of this world (including the price), there are good values and I like the Coutet very much.

9 Responses to “Serving Fois-gras”

  1. Anna 1 December 2006 at 1:04 pm Permalink

    With which herb You could serve the “toast de fois-gras”? I would like to “decorate” the taost a little bit.

    Best regards, Anna

  2. Pascal 1 December 2006 at 2:34 pm Permalink

    Anna, that’s tough question! I can’t really think of an herb that would not detract from the taste of fois gras.

    Some people use fresh fruits (figs, grapes, pears), or dried fruits (like apricot, or possibly prunes) to decorate the fois gras, or just garnish the plate).

    If just to decorate, maybe Parsley would do, but I’m not convinced the taste would mix to your satisfaction.

  3. Carolyn 26 December 2006 at 9:30 am Permalink

    Here is a link to your post–lovely picture!
    http://18thccuisine.blogspot.com/2006/12/serving-and-eating-foie-gras.html

  4. Isobelle 28 February 2008 at 3:20 am Permalink

    I would like to know why there are two different spellings for fois gras and foie gras – or are they two different things?
    Also, as I am half French and half Italian, my ancestors have always insisted that fois gras or foie gras is religiosly goose and not duck as some chefs like to call it today. They said that people used to refer to the duck version as the ‘poor mans’ alternative. However, my family said it was just a shortage of goose that started the duck fois gras. But no one has told me why there are two spellings! Can you?

  5. Pascal 28 February 2008 at 9:38 am Permalink

    Ahem, the correct spelling is really with an “e”, not “s”. This misspelling is a fairly common mistake made by lots of people (guilty as charged here! And when I realized my mistake it was too late to fix). Plus the incorrect spelling is also a correct french word.

    As far a duck vs. goose, I don’t know about recent history. I do know that the Egyptians, who are credited for having invented foie gras, and the technique of over feeding birds to fatten them were doing it with several different species of birds.

  6. alain wursching 6 February 2009 at 3:13 am Permalink

    Hi i would like to know wich red wine to serve with the “foie gras d’oie chaud” as we prefere than sauterne.

  7. Pascal 7 February 2009 at 11:50 am Permalink

    @Alain, I’ve been happy with a nice bordeaux the few time I’ve had warm foie gras. I think a Burgundy or Rhone Valley could also work.

  8. meesh 9 February 2010 at 2:21 pm Permalink

    bordeaux is great but it also goes nice with champagne, a very generous friend sent me a package of jolanda de colo products, and last night we had a 900 g foie gras de torchon and duck breast carpaccio on crostinis, lomo patanegra, with bordeaux and we also had smoked salmon with caper berries and seved with riesling and with bagutte


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