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.
For many epicureans, the clean woodsy essence of edible snails smothered in rich cognac and garlic infused herb butter is a favorite escargot recipe and the only way to start a luxurious dining experience. But while Escargots à la Bourguignonne is a timeless and popular starter, it is just one of many scrumptious ways to enjoy this delicacy.
For those who may wish to go on an escargot culinary adventure, here are a couple decadent escargot recipes that you may not have tried out as yet.
Bucatini with Snails, Guanciale and Anchovies
Anchovies are all the rage right now so it’s not surprising that the Tasting Table chefs found a way to
pair it with Wild Burgundy Escargot. This escargot recipe provides a unique take on a playful cuisine
for a total of 45 minutes from prep time to plating. For this escargot recipe, you will need the following ingredients:
⅓ cup fresh breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil,
2 ounces thinly sliced guanciale or pancetta, ½ cup finely chopped onion, 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 4 garlic cloves, minced
8 oil-packed anchovy fillets drained and smashed into a paste,
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, 1 can crushed tomatoes,
1 (4.3-ounce) can large Wild Burgundy snails drained,
1 pound bucatini, 1 teaspoon lemon zest, ¼ cup torn basil leaves
¼ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano
Prepare this play on classic “amatriciana” by preheating the oven to 350°. Lightly toss the bread-crumbs with two tablespoons of olive oil then transfer to a baking sheet. Let toast, tossing periodically until the crumbs are golden in color. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Begin making the sauce by first putting a large pot of salted water to boil. In the meantime, on medium flame, heat a large skillet and sauté the guanciale (an Italian cured meat) until crispy. Toss in 1 tablespoon olive oil, onions to cook until the onions are nearly translucent. Add the anchovy paste garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for about a minute. Incorporate the tomatoes, lower the heat and simmer until the sauce thickens before adding the escargot. Heat through for approximately three minutes.
Once the sauce is ready, turn off the heat and start adding the pasta to the boiling water. Cook the pasta till ad dente, then drain but retain one cup of the pasta water. Combine the pasta and escargot sauce mixture. Gently toss. Use a splash of the left over past water to loosen up the dish if it seems a bit dry. Finish with a zesting of lemon and basil sprigs.
Serving Tip: Pile in bowls and top with grated Pecorino and the toasted breadcrumbs. Serve with crusty bread on the side.
Wild Helix Escargot Quiche Replace boring scrambled eggs for breakfast or brunch with a wild helix escargot quiche. The flavor and texture of escargots that has been simmered in aromatic bouillon will most likely make you rethink what you’ve been having for Sunday morning breakfast. The best part is that escargot is packed with nutrients and also a low-card, 100% natural breakfast alternative.
This photo of Rouge is courtesy of TripAdvisor”>You can make this innovative escargot recipe from start to finish in about 45 minutes. For an extra flavorful version of this escargot recipe you will need the following ingredients to make two 9” pies:
1 Helix12 pcs IQF Escargot sliced, 3 medium shallots diced, 8 ounces mushrooms medium diced and dehydrated slowly over low heat, 4 small cloves of garlic finely chopped, 2-3 slices smoky bacon, 4 ounces fresh goat cheese, and four ounces grated gruyere, fresh chervil (picked clean)
Royale: 400 grams heavy whipping cream, 2 TBSP crème fraiche, 6 Whole Eggs, Plus 1 yolk, salt, white pepper (Sarawak), freshly grated nutmeg, paprika, and dry herbes de Provence
Quiche Crusts 11 tbsp of unsalted butter, 3 large eggs, 4 tbsp water, 2 cups sifted flour and a pinch of salt.
In a food processor add 9 tablespoons of unsalted butter and blend until airy and smooth. Add one egg and blend then add the water and blend. Gradually incorporate 2 cups of sifted flour and a pinch salt then blend. Place on a sheet of wax paper and form into a ball. Cover with wax paper and press gently into a flattened circle approximately an inch thick. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for at least one hour.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. While oven is heating, cut bacon into 1 inch squares and render over low heat until crispy. Set aside on paper towel and reserve the bacon fat. Sauté the shallots and garlic in about two tablespoons of the bacon fat. Add snails and mushrooms and toss then let cool.
For the Royale, whisk together 6 whole eggs plus one egg yolk and gradually add heavy whipping cream, crème fraiche and blend. Add salt, white pepper (Sarawak), freshly grated nutmeg, paprika, and dry herbes de Provence.
Liberally brush chilled quiche molds with remaining melted butter. Dust with flour then roll dough to fit quiche molds, perhaps 1/8-inch thickness. Press into mold. pierce well using fork tines. Par-bake dough for a few minutes until it turns white. Briskly brush the inside of the crust, bottom and sides with egg wash. Bake for two more minutes or until egg wash has dried.
Pour the filling evenly between the quiche crusts. Add chervil then sprinkle with both cheeses. Pour Royale to fill, to within 1/4 inch of the top. Bake until golden brown and puffy, allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.
Serving Tip: Serve room-temperature or warmed with tomato slices.
What Does Escargot Taste Like?
Much like any other food, taste is relative to the individual palate. As such there are a variety of opinions regarding the flavor profile of escargot. For instance some say they have an earthy flavor like mushrooms. Others swear they taste exactly like scallop or some other form of seafood and still there are those who say they have a poultry texture and flavor. The best way to determine what escargot taste like however, is to explore this fascinating cuisine for yourself.
Try out these and other escargot recipes and visit our House of Caviar and Fine Foods online store for a convenient resource for all your gourmet foods. We also offer the freshest, best quality escargot, caviar, fish roe, foie gras, truffles and a number of other specialty foods, gourmet accessories, and gourmet gift baskets. Also, to learn more about this decadently delicious cuisine or for gift ideas, recipes and tips on how to eat caviar take a look at House of Caviar and Fine Foods Facebook page.
In an anonymous comparison of Osetra vs Beluga caviar with only taste and no price points to consider, it may be difficult to pick a winner. Fortunately, there is no real need to compare since some very basic variables like availability and pricing mute the Osetra vs Beluga caviar competition for most consumers. Nevertheless, since dining on caviar can be one of the most decadent culinary experiences, it helps to identify which caviar product is most satisfying to your palate and wallet.
In the last decade or so, there has been a definite toss-up between Beluga vs Osetra for avid caviar connoisseurs and chefs alike, as to which caviar offers the best value. But whether it comes down to an Osetra vs Beluga challenge or not, sampling the taste of these and other caviar brands is the only way to definitively choose or to decide if there is even a reason to choose one over the other.
About Ossetra Caviar
Next to the Beluga and Sevruga brands, Ossetra caviar rank as one of the most exquisite caviars in the world today. The diversity of Ossetra caviar relative to the taste profile, size and color of the beads can make each dining experience unique. The variances in the flavor of Russian Ossetra caviar is often attributed to the fact that the Ossetra sturgeons adapt to irregularities in their environment that ultimately influences the taste of the eggs. In comparison to the more delicate Beluga pearls, the roe of Osetra sturgeons are smaller, firmer and can range in color from shimmering golden hues to varying shades of brown. This succulent caviar also provides consumers with a complex array of rich flavors.
Stability, in so far as growth patterns and appearance is concerned, has been part of the reason caviar harvested from Ossetra Sturgeons have retained their value. The ancient Ossetra population is classified as a prehistoric mammal that has not evolved relative to their life span, size, weight and body composition. The name Ossetra also referred to as Oscietra, Osetra and Asetra is a transcription of the Russian word “осётр” which in English translates into sturgeon. However, the name Osetra refers specifically to the Acipenser gueldenstaedtii species but is used loosely for other sturgeons such as Acipenser Baerii sturgeons or Siberian sturgeon and the Amur Osetra which are farmed in the Amur River that flows on the state border between Russia and China. Today, the Siberian Sturgeons can be found in habitats all over the world due to their ability to adapt and flourish in a range of environments.
Authentic Beluga sturgeon caviar is famous for its history, relative obscurity and exorbitant price tag. Any Beluga caviar aficionado will however defer solely to the depth of flavor produced by the exceptionally large eggs of the Beluga Sturgeon as the reason for their celebrity status. Despite its size, the Caspian Beluga caviar pearls are described by harvesters as the most delicate of all caviars. Whatever the reason for its popularity, Beluga caviar is globally, the most expensive luxury food available today. At a starting cost of $3,500 per pound, lovers of this rare delicacy have reportedly paid as much as $34,000 for little over two pounds of caviar that is produced by the Beluga albino sturgeon.
Unfortunately, based on information from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) approximately 90% of the Beluga Sturgeon habitat has been destroyed due to overfishing, environmental pollution generated by construction of irrigation channels, dykes and hydro-powered dams. The impact on the Beluga sturgeon population has been so extreme that various bans prohibit theimportation and sale of Beluga caviar. In fact, since 2005, caviar and other gourmet products made from the Beluga Sturgeons has been prohibited under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Scientist also estimate that even with protection laws, recovery of this specie can take over a hundred years due to their low population and slow reproduction rate .
The challenge to find alternatives to elusive Beluga caviar however, has not been unsuccessful. In fact, it has initiated significant changes in the way this valuable fish species and other sturgeon populations are raised, harvested and prepared for consumption. In addition, it has expanded the palate of many beluga caviar gourmands. Whether they have been coerced to sample other types of caviar because of budget, environmental conscience or inaccessibility, many are able to compare and enjoy without prejudice other equally delectable and less reclusive caviar brands.
You can experience the best imported and domestic caviar and gourmet foods from around the world when you visit House of Caviar and Fine Foods online store. This is a great opportunity to explore a variety of caviar and other gourmet fare. Also, follow House of Caviar and Fine Foods on Facebook for delicious recipes and more ideas on ways to incorporate these delicacies into your lifestyle.
As demographics merge and desire for new taste experiences explode, it’s not surprising that the luxury food market in general and caviar in particular is trending. Along with this growing interest, there is an obvious shift in the caviar consumer base. According to annual sales and an ongoing Hackleback vs Paddlefish caviar dialogue; people are as interested today in these humble domestic varieties as the elite still are in the Beluga and Sevruga giants from the Caspian Seas. Frankly, this is not surprising since habitat loss, a decline in the most sought after sturgeon population and global bans have driven sale of these pricy fish eggs into a downward spiral.
As the caviar market continue to turn; people are experiencing the striking similarities in the appearance and flavor profiles of American Paddlefish and Hackleback caviars at extremely comfortable price points when compared to the elusive and expensive Caspian Sea Sturgeons.
And so it begins; the hackleback vs paddlefish caviar argument which is more often ignited by which caviar pairs best with the chef’s menu selections. Even so, the there are some significant differences between hackleback and paddlefish and the caviar they produce. These are primarily hinged on the variables of species, roe size, color and flavor profile.
Species of Hackleback vs Paddlefish
While Hackleback belongs to the Scaphirhynchus platorynchus sturgeon family; Paddlefish is a member of the Polyodontidae or basal Chondrostean ray-finned fish species. Although not a sturgeon, it is recognized as a cousin of the sturgeon species partly because like the ancient sturgeons, Paddlefish are also referred to as “primitive” with fossil records dating as far back as the late cretaceous period that substantiate this designation. And, while there are at least 27 Sturgeon species only six known Paddlefish genera existed of which four are already extinct.
The good news is that studies show advancements in technology relative to farming methodologies are designed to enhance rearing and propagation of these specimens. As such, these biotechnologies have already noticeably improved the reproduction capacity of both the Hackleback and Paddlefish populations as well as their survival rates.
Roe Size and Color
As the smallest of the sturgeon population, Hackleback caviar consists of small, black pearls that are often marketed as either Chattanooga Beluga, American Premium Black Caviar or simply Hackleback Caviar.
In comparison, the size of the Paddlefish produces fish eggs that are similar in appearance to Suvrega caviar pearls. They also range in color from light to a dark gray or shimmering golden brown hues.
When it comes to caviar, it all comes down to flavor. Whether you choose Hackleback caviar or Paddlefish caviar you are sure to enjoy the succulent and unique essence of either one.
American Paddlefish caviar is distinguished by a complex flavor profile that is at the same time earthy, silky and smooth with a subtle finish.
On the other hand, Hackleback caviar is often compared in flavor to the Caspian Sea Ossetra and of course; Suvrega caviar. It is known for its sweet, buttery flavor and a strong nutty finish. The shimmering beads of this caviar adds drama and decadence whether it is paired with the tartness of a crisp green apple or piled on toast points accompanied by crème fraiche.
You can experience the best imported and domestic caviar and a host of other luxury foods from around the world through House of Caviar and Fine Foods. We offer a wide variety of gourmet meats, vinegars, along with the finest Foie Gras, fresh or preserved truffles, and other specialty foods at our online store. Also, follow House of Caviar and Fine Foods on Facebook for delicious recipes and more ideas on ways to incorporate these delicacies into your lifestyle.