Foie gras is a thorny subject. There are those who are avidly against, and there are those (who probably understand more about it) who are pro'.
There are several products that come from the fattening of Ducks. My favourite being Confit de Canard which are Duck legs/thighs very slowly simmered in their own fat then preserved in large earthenware jars; or in my case 'large tins'. There are the Magrets de Canard which are the Duck breasts. The necks are stuffed making the delicious Cous farcis. The fat is often sold at Christmas for the roasting of Potatoes. And finally there are the livers (the actual Foie gras), that are very gently preserved in jars such as the one below with just a pinch of salt and pepper, or made into Paté when mixed with Pork.
Some countries have banned the sale of Foie gras, but continue to sell all the other products (which makes no sense). Other countries try to inhibit its import, but not 100% successfully.
Personally I pop a couple of jars in the car when I head North after Summer; one for Christmas, and another for Easter.
Foie gras is a special occasion item; not something one eats too often. The one above was eaten at New Year by four aficionados amongst much ooohing and aaahing. If I describe it as eating delicious Pure Silk crossed with Angel's Breath, you will have some idea of its luxurious nature.
A lot is said about how cruel the process is, but once you've seen the Ducks queuing-up to be fed you soon realise what nonsense this is.
I shall continue to eat foie gras once or twice a year as a treat, and do so without guilt. If you can find any, I recommend you do the same.
N.B. The very best comes from my area of S W France; Gascony.
Being in the Midwest US, I doubt if I will ever have a chance to try foie gras . I have read several times in various places that it has now been banned for those who are in the Royal Family. The first time I read that info, I thought, well how about that. The following 10 or more times I saw the headline in print, I thought maybe they doth protest too much.ReplyDelete
I expect they've said that so as not to have protesters outside their front door.Delete
I would love to try some, one day maybe. Your descriptions are very descriptive. A real eating experienceReplyDelete
Good stuff if you can get hold of it.Delete
I have never tried any and I doubt I ever will, it just isn't within my budget. But if I was anywhere and someone offered me a taste I would try it, but as a child I didn't even like liverwurst, so maybe this isn't for me either.ReplyDelete
It is quite pricey, but once or twice a year is just about affordable.Delete
The "gavage" [sticking a plastic pipe down the throat and pumping a mix of maize and molasses into the bird's stomach] is for geese foie gras which is allegedly the finest.... with ducks, just pour the same mix into a trough and it is like you haven't fed them for a week!!ReplyDelete
They are very greedy for it....
There is a foie gras duck farm less than a mile from where I am sitting and I have visited on numerous occasions. The ducks are in very large, open pens of about 50 by 100yds with a pool and a shelter against sun/rain.... 100 animals to the pen.
When the current owners took it over from the wife's parents, they did still use "gavage" on the ducks and that equipment is now a museum of "how we used to do it".... but someone in the south of France [down Cro's way] discovered that the labour-intensive, time consuming process was not needed with ducks... they self-gavaged and the method has spread right across France.
Yes, there are old farmers who use the old methods, but they are few and far between.
But although I am happy to eat duck foie gras if served it with a meal, I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it....
But the entire duck with the exception of head, feet and feathers is consumed, not just the liver.... and as Cro says, those by-products are very tasty...
However, I would not touch goose foie gras because of the cruelty involved.... and, if truth be told, I'll bet there are very few people who could tell the difference between the two!!
At my local 'Gamme vert', they still sell those plastic funnels for the gavage. I expect it's just the small farmers (wives) who use them.Delete
We had a trip to France many years ago for Xmas and had wonderful foie gras in a couple of ways - warm on steak and as a pate with Sauterne jelly. Very much a special occasion treat!ReplyDelete
A thick slice on top of a good steak is wonderful. Very much smart restaurant fodder.Delete
The very thought of it makes me feel ill and the description of ducks queueing up for their daily dose brings to mind a queue of drug addicts waiting for their daily dose. Not good for your diet either Cro, give it up!ReplyDelete
Can't I just have it once a year? Liver is good for you!Delete
Cro, it wasn't so long ago that you were complaining of wonky legs. Could that be down to something you ate?Delete
I hope not, although it could be down to my weight (16 stone).Delete
Maybe a bit of work on both those conditions would bring a better result ;o)Delete
I think it is wisest to just say "No Comment" on this particular subject. So - No Comment.ReplyDelete
People are usually quite decided about Foie Gras, they are either pro or con. Sitting on the fence is unusual.Delete
He is unusual or strange nothing wrong with either. Leaving a comment but not leaving is taking the Foie Gras.Delete
Not to worry I'm having a roast neck of rump topside come silverside for my tea. I like using vocabulary whether it make sense or not.
Pasta for us tonight, we had our Sunday Roast yesterday.Delete
It is tasty stuff.ReplyDelete
It sure is.Delete
A special delicacy a few times a year hurts nobody. Moderation is key.ReplyDelete
That's my attitude too.Delete
Sorry but not to my tasteReplyDelete
It'd be a very dull world if we all liked the same things.Delete
Oooh, I have always loved a bit of Foie Gras!ReplyDelete
However, as I've grown older, the guilt has started to get to me.
Therefore, I now eat Foie Royale, which is a 'cruelty free' alternative. It's not as good as the real thing, but it's still lovely gently fried and popped on top of sourdough toast as a suppertime treat! Also delicious on top of a good steak!
It's available from F&M if you fancy trying it! X
I've never heard of that. It's certainly not sold down in S W France. I must make enquiries!Delete
You can get it in Brighton!Delete
From someone called 'Onest 'Arry?Delete