Each original tin holds the eggs of an individual sturgeon. Caviar should never be “blended” or mixed with different fish. With the advent of aquaculture, a harvesting group of caviar-bearing sturgeon is almost always of the same age, size, & stock. They are also raised in the same conditions (water quality, temperature, etc.) and on the same diet. Biology, of course, can still play a part and make a unique “batch” per individual fish. Part of the initial grading process is to evaluate the quality and consistency of the original delivery. Rich will factor into account the size of the caviar grains (medium to large size) along with the color of the eggs, from light to dark.
By sampling the product, we are evaluating multiple factors – foremost the richness of flavor. Caviar – especially that of the Osetra sturgeon – should have a fresh, almost nutty flavor – and should be briny without being powerfully salty (“malossol” – Russian for “little salt” – is a common term used and is often on the caviar label itself.) The pleasing flavor needs to be equally offset by a firmness of egg texture – or the “pop” on the roof of the mouth – that is a traditional benchmark of superior caviar. Finally, the finish is evaluated on the palate – it should be creamy and flavorful, not bitter or “fishy.” All these factors play into the assessment of the quality grade assigned to the caviar.
If you love the decadently rich taste of foie gras but thought it was too complicated to serve at home, you are in for a wonderful surprise. Many gourmet aficionados make the mistake of thinking the only way they can incorporate this gastronomic delight at home is as foie gras pate. Actually, foie gras is surprisingly simple to serve whether it is in its whole lobe form or prepared as a terrine or pate. Once you know how to serve foie gras, you can easily feature it as a centerpiece at all your finest gatherings. Don´t be surprised to find yourself reaching for foie gras as your favorite flavor, using it to transform everyday meals into gourmet concoctions and as a stand-alone treasure anytime you have a craving for something delicious.
Moulard duck foie gras is recommended for the richest, most refined flavor. If you are starting with fresh or frozen foie gras lobes, they need to be cooked before they can be served. Foie gras lobes store exceptionally well in the freezer, and are available in cubes, slices, or whole lobes. If using frozen foie gras, defrost in the refrigerator before preparing. Starting with foie gras lobes that are at a slightly chilled temperature, slice into portions that are approximately half an inch thick.
The high fat content of foie gras can cause it to tear or crumble when cut with a room temperature knife, so be sure to use a non-serrated blade and run it under hot water between each cut. Lightly salt and pepper slices, then sear in a hot skillet for around 30 seconds on each side, just long enough for the foie gras to develop a light brown crust.
- How to serve whole lobe foie gras
Because foie gras is so superbly rich, it should be served in portions that are no larger than a single slice. Typical foie gras accompaniments include dried fruits or nuts, or simple sauces such as honey or fig chutney. Fruity and acidic flavors enhance the rich, nutty taste of foie gras to create a harmonious whole. Arrange your foie gras slices on toasted brioche rounds, or plate the slices and drizzle with a simple sweet-and-sour sauce, such as an Asian plum sauce or cranberry sauce.
- Serving foie gras pate and terrine
When serving prepared foie gras pates or terrines, you can just slice portions directly from the mold. Ready-made foie gras has the best flavor when served slightly chilled or at room temperature. Fold slices onto toast points or country bread. Foie gras goes well with honey and fruit preserves, or you can simply serve on the toast slices. Accompany with lightly perfumed, sweet wines such as Sauternes and sweeter Rieslings.
- Where to obtain foie gras
Many grocery stores and gourmet shops only carry “shelf-stable” foie gras that had been preserved in jars or tins. Buying foie gras from the House of Caviar & Fine Foods online store allows amateur chefs and aspiring foodies to enjoy fresh, frozen, and ready-made foie gras that is flavorful and of the highest quality. For more than thirty years, we have been the online source that discerning epicureans rely on for the freshest selected caviar and foie gras, as well as specialty meats, seafood, truffles, and other gourmet foods from all over the world. Follow House of Caviar and Fine foods online on our Facebook page for more foie gras serving suggestions, gourmet recipes, and more.
Bemka House of Caviar has been supplying and working the world’s best chefs for over 30 years such as Chef Daniel Boulud from restaurant Daniel.
Whether its pan fried and served on a bed of satiny greens or boosting the flavor of braised lamb, there’s a definite shift in the culinary role of the humble anchovy. Even though this fish has long been revered as a delicacy in Spain, the versatility of anchovies has only recently become a chef’s favorite. As it finally assumes its place as an integral player in the fine dining experience, anchovies health benefits are also finding their way into the spotlight.
The Anchovy is an oily forage fish from the engraulidae family. There are at least 144 known anchovy species that play a significant ecological role as an important food source for other marine life and some birds. Although they are found in various regions of the world their preferred habitat is in temperate waters. Anchovies are particularly abundant in the Mediterranean seas and on the coast of Africa. They also thrive in the shallow, brackish waters of estuaries and bays.
As a nutritionally dense food source, anchovies health benefits are innumerable. For instance:
- The large polyunsaturated fat content in anchovies is helpful in reducing the presence of Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol (LDL) often referred to as “bad” cholesterol. Studies show the high levels of Omega-3 fatty acid, found in anchovies work by stripping away LDL which prevent it from adhering to arterial walls and aid in its elimination from the body.
- The meaty flesh of anchovies is also loaded with proteins that are beneficial to the efficient functioning of cell metabolism. This is imperative to connective tissue repair and regrowth.
- Anchovies nutrition also make them a good source of vitamins and minerals such as calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, niacin, riboflavin, selenium, thiamin, zinc and vitamins A, C D, E, K, B6, and B12.
- Anchovies health benefits has also been touted by some for aiding in weight loss. It is said to enhance ocular health by providing protection against cataracts and macular degeneration. In some studies, it is also shown to ease the pain of rheumatoid arthritis, promote cardiovascular health, build strong bones that reduce the effects of osteoporosis, prevent premature aging and lower the risk of skin cancer.
By incorporating this beneficial food into your diet through the increasing number of anchovy recipes that are available today can only help to boost your body’s healing properties.
Whether you are using marinated white anchovies on toast or as an accompaniment to herb rubbed broiled potatoes, buying a quality product can only enhance the flavor profile of your recipes. For many chefs, the salinity of the tender meat of anchovies are the reason they deliver such a flavor punch. You can enjoy them as a stand-alone dish or paired with everything from tomatoes, dips, dressings, salads, meat, sauces, stews and even sandwiches to name a few. The unexpected appearance of anchovies add dimension and another layer of flavor to so many recipes that keeping the anchovies secret is getting to be a challenge for both professional chefs and homebased cooks. Also, the introduction of Tapas cuisine has heightened attention to this formerly overlooked fare that is credited with the transition of anchovies as a popular street food.
Now that the anchovies health benefits and versatility is in the open, it may be time to consider using this valuable food to add an extra punch of flavor to more of your everyday dishes. To learn more about our exquisite marinated white anchovy fillets with garlic and parsley and other gourmet offerings visit our House of Caviar and Fine Foods online store. We invite you to try our wide selection of specialty meats, caviar and fish roe that will appease every palate and budget. We also provide an array of gourmet accessories and gift baskets. To find more decadent recipes or for gift ideas, caviar recipes and tips on how to add these delicacies into your diet, join us on the House of Caviar and Fine Foods Facebook page.