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Culinary adventure, no passport required

Posted on May, 04 2015

May-June 2015

Around the world in four new dishes

Starting this month, we prove that you really can eat your way around the world
without leaving the comfort of your home!

We begin our culinary journey in Ireland: using “hard” Irish cider, we’re marinating tender chicken thighs and then braising them with a classic mirepoix (carrots, celery and onion) before adding ribbons of Savoy cabbage and plump, juicy raisins. Hard Cider Chicken with Savoy Cabbage is available May 18. Slante! (Which means “cheers” on the Emerald Isle.)

Next we head to France, the inspiration for Cassoulet of Chicken Sausage, Butter Beans and Kale. Our California take on this French family favorite includes chicken and kale sausages as well as fresh organic kale. The result is the new definition of summer comfort food: deep flavors that won’t weigh you down. We’ll have this new Cassoulet on the June 1st menu — just bring a spoon!

What European gastro-tour would be complete without a stop in Italy – southern Italy to be exact. Everyone knows of the classic Genovese pesto but in Sicily, where sunny orchards are bursting with almond trees, pine nuts are replaced with the humble, delicious almond. Not just for nut butter, we’re blending pan-roasted almonds with fresh parsley, garlic, olive oil, parmesan, and a touch of rosemary. Tossed with fresh spaghetti, wilted spinach, oven-roasted tomatoes and lean sausage, our Spaghetti and Chicken Meatballs with Pesto alla Siciliana debuts June 15th.

Last – and definitely inspired by the Far East – we’ve created Asian 5-Spice Pork Ragout, available May 25. Far from your average pork “stew,” this dish takes tender, braised pork to exotic places with Hoisin sauce and Chinese 5-Spice powder – all in a silky sauce of reduced red wine. Serve this with rice for a “take-out” night in, or spoon the tender pork into lettuce cups for a light and low carb meal.

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Summertime favorites are back!

Most would agree that May – Memorial Day weekend to be exact – is the unofficial start to summer, so we’re bringing some familiar favorites back for the warmer days and nights ahead.

Love BBQ but don’t feel like heating up the grill? Our cold grilled Niman Ranch Tri Tip will save the day. These lean steaks are lightly seasoned and then grilled to your liking and served with a cool and spicy horseradish crème fraîche on the side. Layer thin slices of Tri Tip on crème fraîche-slathered rolls for easy sliders, or add it to our Organic Baby Arugula with Romaine and Goodies for a hearty dinner salad.

And speaking of salads, our composed salads are back! In her blog, Jessie recently shared her own tips for making perfect composed – or entrée – salads, which make their return to our menus for summer. Read more here.

e-Bite: Tips for Better Entertaining

With summer – literally – around the corner, many of us will be moving our meals outside to take advantage of balmy nights and backyard parties. And if you’re thinking of hosting a soirée, look no further than your personal chefs (that’s us!). Just browse our upcoming menus (we typically have 4-6 weeks of menus posted online), and select an assortment of meals. Of course any of our dishes would look great on a buffet table, and most can quickly transform into passed hors-d'oeuvres.

Some of our favorites include:
• Shaved Tri Tip on garlic crostini with horseradish crème fraîche
• Spanish Gazpacho “shots”
• Passed Artichoke and Asiago Cheese Frittata bites
• Sloppy Joe sliders (just quarter each sandwich and secure with a toothpick)

Entertaining can be easy and fun – especially when we’re here to help!

Wine and cheese? How about wine and cheese coins!

We’re excited to bring back Rustic Bakery’s Cheese Coins as your order ahead gift. These bite-sized snacks are made with aged Gruyère, Fiscalini Farms cheddar and parmesan cheese, and are melt-in-your-mouth good! Perfect as a light hors d’oeuvre with a glass of wine. Available while supplies last with qualifying order. 

Pyewacket sails again

Remember last summer when Jessie et Laurent fed a crew of hungry sailors who were making their way from San Francisco to Oahu? Well, we were recently “back in the galley” cooking up Lemon Basil Chicken with Asparagus, BBQ Beef Short Ribs with Pappardelle, and Classic Lamb Stew with Creamer Potatoes and Green Beans for this skilled crew of yachtsmen.

“We loved the meals you did for us for the Pacific Cup and that’s why we are coming back for this Mexican race!”

This latest event was the Newport to Cabo race, which set sail from California’s Newport Harbor Yacht Club and landed on Mexican shores late March. Pyewacket, an Andrews 70 sailed by Roy P. Disney and his crew, sliced through the waves for 3-days to edge out the competition and claim 1st in their fleet (It must have been the fine fuel we provided!).

In an interview posted to the Race’s official Facebook page, Disney shared it was one of their best races, with beautiful conditions and even breeching whales on their final day at sea.

L'adventures de Henri

Our longtime clients have watched Jessie and Laurent’s son, Henri, grow up “in the family business” and now, at the age of 22, Henri is ready to graduate and seems poised to follow in his parents’ footsteps.

Henri has long dreamed of joining the team at Jessie et Laurent, whether in the kitchen or the office (or both). During high school he worked with us part time, helping with food prep and deliveries. Upon graduation he strengthened these skills by completing the one year program at San Francisco’s Cordon Bleu Culinary Institute

In 2013, Henri moved to Queenstown, New Zealand, to study adventure tourism management at Queenstown College, where he's learning the entrepreneurial skills necessary to run a small business. As part of his graduation requirement, Henri must complete 900 internship hours, and so he’s been working as a tour guide/operator for local zip line operator, Zip Trek. Henri has had a lot of fun helping the region’s visitors whisk across the canopies of Queenstown’s forests. 

In fact, Jessie has just returned from visiting Henri where she discovered what a thrill it is the zip through the tree tops! (We even have this video to prove it.) 

After graduation, Henri plans to spend six months in Whistler, Canada, before returning to the Bay Area to spend a year under the guidance of his parents and the dedicated staff at Jessie et Laurent. Bienvenue (welcome back), Henri!

Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 10

It’s a tradition to honor the mothers in our lives on Mother’s Day, but are we ignoring all the maternal influences around us? The aunties, teachers, caring siblings, concerned friends, and helpful neighbors — those people who often act like “mothers” in our lives from time to time. So why not celebrate them as well?

A Community Gift from Jessie et Laurent is a great way to send meals from an appreciative group (such as classroom parents or coworkers), whereas L’Express Gift is a quick and simple way to select and send dishes you pick yourself. A Gift Certificate offers the most flexibility, with a fixed dollar amount to spend on any week the recipient chooses. Just visit our Gifts page to get started.

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"You don't need a silver fork to eat good food." -- Paul Prudhomme

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