Foie Gras Follies

Today is my first full day in Paris and my sister just arrived.  he is taking a nap, so I thought I would tell you a little story that happened last week, before I left the US of A.

That week, I had a full schedule, with two bread orders and two dinner parties.  The second dinner party was for a wine club that loves gourmet food to go along with their great wines they select.  I was so excited because I love a good night of people who appreciate fine food.  This group wanted foie gras as the starter course. Well, I have my opinions on the humane aspects of foie gras, and I told her I do not like it, but would do it if she wanted it.  And she did, so I shelved my opinions and totally got into it.  I did a little research and found many recipes, then narrowed it down to the two that seemed  best to me.  Now all I had to do was buy it.

Finding foie gras is not so easy here in Fort Wayne, I quickly learned. I think it would be easier to find Big Foot.  I went to everyone's go-to market, which shall remain nameless for this entry, and two of the butchers I spoke to had never even heard of it.  (Really?  For Pete's Sake.)   But the manager called the head butcher at home and he promised some for me by Friday.  The dinner was Saturday.  Stay with me on this time table.

Friday at noon, I go there and they cannot find it.  Yes, It had been delivered, but it was not in any of the refrigerators, big nor small, in the darned whole store.  The butcher looked, the manager looked, the deli manager looked. By gosh, I would have looked too if they had let me.  So they came to me and said they would overnight some and it would be here by Saturday noon.  The party was Saturday at 6.  Getting a tad nervous, but trying to keep my epicurean cool, I left.  ( I have learned that it never does any good to freak out at times like this because one must have one's wits about one to be ready to switch to plan B.  WWJD? What Would Julia Do?)

Saturday at 11, I am prepping the lettuce when the store calls.  It's in.  Yea!  Marilyn (Stonebraker who, is now one of la Dolce's peeps) and I breathed a huge sigh of relief.  See, everything works out, we say.  It's all good, we say.  Then I call the store back and ask the butcher to de-vein that nasty liver for me.  He says he will not need to.  (In retrospect, Red Flag )  I said, "Oh... is it already deveined?"  He said, "I am looking at it right now and it is ready to be eaten."  I said, "open it and make sure the veins are off" and he said, quickly, "no veins."  I said "whoo-hoo!  They sent it deveined!"   No gross vein stuff for me!  I said I would be there around 2, after we finished our work.

At 2, I go to the store and they hand it to me in this great big styrofoam box.  I open it and it is pate.  Foie Gras pate. This is not what I want!  All this Tom foolery and I get PATE??? The manager came over with the butcher and I felt I had to take it, but I was so upset, I could not believe it.  I texted my client and told her.  She was so gracious.  She did not throw her phone into the river not send a bomb threat to me.

Before a big event, I try to go home home for a few hours and calm down.  I try to lie down or do something mindless like iron.  But I was wound up tighter than a yo-yo.  Honestly, you would think that this Foie Gras was the answer to world peace or something.  but time ticked on, and I had to go to the shop and face it.  As we were putting the finishing touches on the table, Carey (Bryson) said let's call Joseph Dequis and see if they have any.  We did and they did, and in 5 minutes, everything of the last two or three days was erased.  So I had paid TWICE for something that weighed less than a pound but cost more than a home in the islands.  However, they LOVED it , I loved making it and I loved the whole night.  And the store which sold the pate to me, took it back.  A happy ending for all.

By the way, I served it like this.  I cut it in slices about 1/2 to 3/4" think,  scored it on one side and seared it in a hot cast-iron skillet.  In between each searing, I dumped the fat out and wiped the skillet out.  Then we served it on sliced, toasted baguettes we prepared in the oven and a bit of 4 current jelly.  Yum Yum.

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