Tastebud: Ancona Duck

ancona duck
Few people have heard of the Ancona duck, a rare heritage breed of bird whose numbers had until recently become critically low. Only ten years ago, there were just 128 breeding Ancona remaining in North America. Left behind by industrial agriculture—which prefers the fatty Pekin duck that accounts for 95 percent of domesticated duck production in the country—the mottled Ancona was inching closer to extinction. Fortunately for this, ahem, lucky duck, waterfowl expert David Holderread of Corvallis, Oregon, intervened. He found a pair of genetically clean Ancona that became the Adam and Eve of the breed. The majority of Holderread’s prized stock now resides at Willamette Valley’s Boondockers Farm, which is run by two former restaurant professionals who are passionate about raising heritage animals. One of the farm’s regular customers is chef Gabriel Gill of the Rabbit Bistro in Eugene, who served the lean, flavorful fowl with cherries and bl

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Recipe: April Bloomfield's Acquacotta

April Bloomfield's recipe for acquacotta While acquacotta translates to "cooked water," this Tuscan vegetable soup is packed with powerful flavor. April Bloomfield's version features creamy clams and salty slab bacon. Get the recipe here.

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Recipe: Pork Cracklings

Pork cracklings recipe While we don't always root for the same team, everyone can get behind these sweet-and-salty pork cracklings for a game-time snack. This version is cleanly seasoned with salt and pepper, but we think a dusting of cayenne pepper or paprika would be a tasty touch.

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On the Menu: Middle Eastern Magic

Ana Sortun JBF Award winner Ana Sortun and Maura Kilpatrick of Boston’s Oleana and Sofra are bringing their inventive take on Eastern Mediterranean cuisine to the Beard House on Thursday with a mezze-inspired menu. Former Oleana sommelier Theresa Paopao will select the wine pairings, and Siena Farms will provide the locally grown produce. Here's what's on the menu: Hors d’Oeuvre Cheese Puffs with Persian Carrot Jam Kumquats with Goat Cheese and Halvah Brussels Sprout Dolmades with Sesame Seeds, Walnuts, and Pomegranate Kingfish Nayeh with Pickled Red Onions and Herb Salad Monkfish with Black Garlic–Tahini Sauce and Fried Pita Bread Pairing: Prosecco Cocktails with Winter Citrus and Persian Spices Dinner Assorted Mezze > Braised Gigante Beans with Whipped Feta and Wild Greek Herbs; Winter Green Vegetable Tzatziki on Za’atar Bread; and Fattoush with Escarole, Apple, Pa

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On the Menu: January 16 through January 22

Guests mingle in the Beard House Here’s what’s happening at the Beard House and around the country next week: Wednesday, January 19, 12:00 noon Beard on Books: Dana Cowin and Kate Heddings In Food & Wine Reinventing the Classics, the stylish and popular magazine's editors present reimagined classic dishes like cheddar B.L.T. burgers with Russian dressing, Thai green curry chicken wings, and butterscotch sticky buns. It's the perfect cookbook for cooks who want to breathe new life into their repertoire. Wednesday, January 19, 7:00 P.M. Colorado Ranch and Farm Boulder chef Eric Skokan of the Black Cat returns to the Beard House with his French-inflected yet utterly American cuisine. For this dinner, he has designed a so

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Recipe: Dano Hutnik's Lamb Stew with Parsnips, Bacon, and Fennel

Lamb Stew with Parsnips, Bacon, and Fennel Planning on hibernating during the long, cold weekend? Be sure to curl up with a bowl of this satisfying lamb stew from chef Dano Hutnik.

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