The Cure - November 2014

Welcome to the November 2014 edition of The Cure

Winter eating is back again! This month, Fred’s recipe is a classic method of preparing eggs along with a local, seasonal side. Alanna McIntyre from Bishop's Cellar's returns with the perfect wine pairing suggestion. Yes, wine even at brunch! The cheese of the month is a seasonal favourite we can't wait to tell you about. Our good buddy Chef David Smart from Front & Central in Wolfville drops in to share his amazing story of career change and following his dreams. And last we have news going down at the shop. Thanks again for continuing to read The Cure!

Sea Urchin with Scrambled Eggs

By Frédéric Tandy

In France, scrambled eggs are traditionally served smooth and creamy, like a custard. Fast food places and hotels have turned this dish into lumpy bumps that aren't anything close to how they should be served. Avoid them at all costs! 

You can add in the extras once the eggs are done. Try more enriching your eggs with butter, cream, sour cream or crème fraîche. Some recipes call for just a touch of raw eggs to make the final dish more creamy.

But what about sea urchins? What a combo! Urchin and scrambled eggs. You'll never go out for brunch again!

Sea Urchin with Scrambled Eggs

Prep time: 15 minutes 
Cooking time: 10 minutes tops!
Serves: 4 (approx.)

What you'll need

  • 4 – Fresh Sea Urchins
  • 8 – Fresh eggs
  • 4 tbsp – Unsalted butter
  • 3 tbsp – Heavy Cream
  • Salt & Pepper

How to do it

  1. Open your urchins and remove the gorgeous uni. Place them on paper towel and set in the fridge. (See below for an easy how-to for opening urchins.)
  2. Heat your nonstick pan to medium.
  3. Crack open all the eggs into a bowl and loosely whisk with a fork, breaking the yolks. Add a good pinch of salt and grind of pepper. Whisk a bit more.
  4. Melt the butter in the pan, let the sizzling kinda stop and add in your eggs.
  5. The trick here is to keep the eggs constantly moving with a spatula, not letting the eggs cook too fast. It may seem like nothing is happening at first, but they are slowly cooking. All the movement helps achieve the smallest possible curd. Read: rich and creamy eggs!
  6. Eventually you'll see the eggs start to firm up. You're still keeping them moving right? Scrape the pan's surface often. If the eggs are clumping up, lower the heat.
  7. When the eggs are almost there, they should resemble a custard with no bumps and lumps!
  8. Now you can enrich the eggs if you wish. Add in the cream and gently blend into the eggs. Heaven.
  9. Spoon out a serving of eggs and top with the urchin. Don't forget the hot buttered toast! 
Richard, a good friend of the shop, is a seafood maniac. Specifically sea urchin's. A while back we did a fun little video with him demonstrating exactly how to open these beauties of the sea. Check it out!



Wine pairing with Sea Urchin

By Alanna McIntyre, Bishop's Cellar

The sommelier suggests 

Perhaps it is my childhood obsession with mermaids and my love of the sea that has me really excited about this exotic sounding seafood. I might have tasted sea urchin unknowingly in the past on a sushi platter, but I don’t recall paying particular attention to its unique flavours, so I am looking forward to experiencing all of this sea creature’s briny goodness in alongside a good bottle of wine. I have been told that sea urchin tastes a little bit like an oyster, but with an even more pronounced sea flavour. With this in mind, any wine that you would have with oysters would work well with sea urchin; a wine with lots of acidic zip to stand up to the strong saline and mineral flavours of the dish is ideal. Champagne is a classic pairing and it does taste delicious with just about any seafood. South of the Champagne region is Chablis, where you'll find the cleanest and purest expression of the Chardonnay grape where it is grown on a fossilized oyster bed, so, of course this could be a winning pairing too. Brocard Chablis offers pure and lively fruit, plenty of acidity without being sour. Another region in France to look to for sea urchin worthy wines is the Loire Valley; Muscadet de Sevre et Maine is a bit more subtle in flavour, though still has some depth and a hint of a spritz from ageing briefly on the yeast lees before bottling, Chateau de l'Oisellière is an excellent example of this style and offers incredible value. Finally, Sancerre, made from Sauvignon Blanc is by far the more assertive wine with bright acidity, green fruit and a mineral edge. If you want to treat yourself to a really good one, try the Jean Max Roger Sancerre Cuvee GC. There are lots of delicious wines to choose from; as long as the wine exhibits a freshness, with good acidity and flavours of the sea you should have a great tasting experience.

Alanna McIntyre is a Sommelier at Bishop's Cellar. Visit their great location and follow them on Twitter.

The Cheese course

Vacherin Mont d'Or

A seasonal cheese, Mont d’Or has been called the holy grail of French raw milk cheeses. It’s available only from October to late winter. Dating back to the 18th Century, Mont d’Or was created in order to use up the Autumn-Winter milk from the cows which produce less quantity milk then in the Spring-Summer. Milk used for cheese like Comté, Raclette, Emmental or Morbier). 

Mont d’Or is an uncooked, unpressed soft cheese with a washed rind. It’s ripened for about three weeks in a spruce box which lends a particular flavour and help protect the cheese. These boxes should never be removed, even when serving. It’s an unforgettably rich cheese with a velvety and buttery taste that lingers.

Mont d'Or should be available at the shop by mid-November!

From: Jura, France
Type: Unpasteurized cow’s milk
Texture: Uncooked, unpressed soft cheese with a washed rind
Fat: 50%
Aged: 60 days
Taste: Velvety and buttery
Accompaniments: Côtes du Jura, Chardonnay

Time for a change

By David Smart

I am excited to be one of the guest chef’s at The Kitchen Table this fall. There is something flattering about being asked by the guys at Ratinaud to take part in this dinner series. You see, I am a ‘newly’ minted chef-owner of a restaurant here in Nova Scotia… or at least it still feels that way. 

I started out working as an engineer, where I found my ‘hobby’ of cooking turning into catering, regular dinner parties with my friends, and sometimes just showing up with a bag of groceries and cooking dinner for friends. It wasn’t until a good friend of mine urged me to explore further and take the next step that I packed up and moved up to Ottawa. It was here that I attended Le Cordon Bleu and following a whirlwind nine months of intensive learning, I graduated at the top of my class. The next year found me contract engineering by day and working in a kitchen at night, leading somewhat of a double life. 

My whirlwind journey found me back in Nova Scotia two years later, signing the papers to buy what would be known as Front & Central in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. The past two and a half years have gone by in a flash… long days in the kitchen and running a small business keeps one busy.

So I sit here today reflecting on the past four years of my life, planning my menu for my upcoming dinner with Frédéric and Tom at Ratinaud. Incredibly thankful that I took the plunge and followed the passion that continues to fuel me each day. I look forward to sharing a meal with you… see you on the 21st and 22nd of November!

David Smart is the chef proprietor of Front & Central in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, where he's fuelled by his culinary curiosity and passion for cooking he can be found 'playing with his food'. You can follow him on Twitter here and here!


Happening at Ratinaud

By Tom Crilley
The Kitchen Table ~ 2015 dates now available!

The third season of The Kitchen Table continues...

It’s not like going to a restaurant. The Kitchen Table is a premiere dining experience hosted at our shop every Friday and Saturday (with some holiday exceptions). Guests come to our house to enjoy a special meal we prepare for them. 

We are thrilled to announce over 400 seats are available for 2015! Please visit our website to view all open dates and to book your reservation. We're looking forward to hosting you at The Kitchen Table.

Every way under the sun to get in touch:
Email - FacebookTwitter - Instagram - YouTube 
+1 (902) 446-8222

Thanks for reading The Cure!
Follow on Ratinaud on Twitter    Like Ratinaud on Facebook    Forward The Cure to a Friend 
How cool!
Copyright © 2014 Ratinaud French Cuisine, All rights reserved.