Foraged & Found with Danielle Prewett | MeatEater Cooks

By | December 13, 2022

Wild + Whole is rooted in the values of sustainable eating, which often means making use of less common ingredients alongside foods in the peak of the season. Kevin and Danielle work together to transform two strikingly different ingredients, Fresh Duck Liver and Chanterelle Mushrooms, into a dish that would be right at home on the menu of any of Kevin’s restaurants.
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[Music] So I'll admit Sean trails are kind of The only mushroom that I'm comfortable Foraging for but I know this is Something that you're pretty passionate About right yes sir in Texas Um it's one of the mushrooms that I Forage a lot and because it's really Easy to identify it's very abundant and A lot of people in Texas don't know that But also I think my my favorite thing About it is it's very like seasonal in Summer and it's got to be right after a Rain and I remember the first time I Found them it had just rained and I went Out looking and then I found one and Smelled it and it was so much moisture In that like I could squeeze out and it Was like the combination of petrichor And apricots and it was just like it was Like love at first sight yeah you're Clearly very excited about it you also Got a cool porcini here which is nice so Yeah that was a really fun surprise guys I have never seen a porcini where around The area where I live in Texas so it was Really fun to learn a little bit more About identifying that that's one of the Things I really love about foraging it's Like that immersive experience to get an Ingredient that is at Peak Perfection It's like that moment when you pick Something you're like mother nature Could not give you anything better than

This right they're also just really fun Because they're little surprises you Know you're in the woods and so it's you Know usually it's kind of shaded and There's a there's a sort of Darkness to It and then you see these little gold Things like scattered right yeah they're Like little like beams of Light which is Like that's pretty cool like I think the Thing about chanterelles unlike some Other mushrooms which can actually be a Little bit better when they're preserved These the smell of them is just Everything and they are best experienced Fresh well exactly and cooking them can Be a little bit tricky and I've I've Come up with a few ways that I like them Throughout the years and I want to show You a recipe today that is something That it's kind of been a work in Progress for like two decades now I Remember the original version of this Dish but I I really like it and I think It complements these a lot so great but I can't wait to try cool let's go inside We'll get started [Music] So how do you feel about liver Loaded question that's usually like Answered during one very particular way Venison liver is a hard one for me I I Try to eat it just to utilize it but to Be honest I don't really love it however I love bird liver okay well X all right

Good this is not venison liver this is Duck liver Every time I think about wild and whole I it's like it's easy for all of us at Meat eater to understand the wild part Yeah but like the whole part to me is What's really important and I was Thinking about this idea of Utilization of everything sustainability Um what does what does Modern sort of Sustainable farming practices look like And so I wanted to show you a dish that Uses both wild stuff obviously the Foraged mushrooms but then also uses Some really like wonderful sustainably Farm-raised duck liver as well and then Again it's the liver because everybody Likes duck breast it's delicious like But these get thrown away a lot and I Hate that and so this is a really fun Way to prepare it and I also think that Liver weirdly enough is one of the best Compliments to mushrooms there is Because it's so earthy it's so minerally That when you get something like a Chanterelle the sweetness of the Chanterelle really comes out against Something it's this safe compliment to Something that's really rich to me in Chanterelle unlike other other mushrooms It has this like light and lightness Quality to it that's really special Right and so this dish is all about like A really hard juxtaposition there's

Something Ultra Savory and then Something that we're going to try to Make sweeter and fresher than even it is In its in its raw form so let's let's Start with the liver itself we're going To be making I mean I call it a moose It's we're really stretching that term a Little bit we're not going to add egg Whites to this but we're going to make a Very light very fluffy pate if you will Would you mind cutting up some shallots Sure So we're going to Brown These livers off In a pan we're going to Brown the Shallots off we're going to Brown them In duck fat and then we're going to Spice it with what people oftentimes Call like Autumn or fall spices so Cinnamon some nutmeg a little bit of Cayenne that's just going to add like Kind of a warming tone I do too I love It a lot and I really like it again with Liver like liver is funny I've played Around with the seasonings for years and I've landed on the fact that I like Liver best when it's pretty aggressively Seasoned and also when you add a lot of Fat to it so I'm just picking some herbs Here thyme chives tarragon we're going To cook this down so those flavors are Going to be kind of a little bit more Muted but then we're going to use them Again where they're highlighted and then Some bay leaves as well obviously we'll

Pull these out but I think they're Really nice in there as well and Probably let's add three I I'm kind of a Bayley freak too I think it's delicious So we got our liver we have some duck Fat shallots a little bit of herbs we've Got our spices some salt and pepper Let's do this let's grab some of these Things and let's go to the stove because We're going to start there and then We'll bring it all back over here to Kind of finish it up okay [Music] All right so the first thing we need to Do is Brown These livers off obviously So I got this duck fat here I'm gonna Use a pretty decent amount of it [Music] The key for me when cooking liver well There's several obviously we talked About seasoning but the big one to me is Not overcooking it like it's got to stay Pink yeah I think that's the biggest Mistake people make with Pates they Think they're supposed to cook it all The way through right right we're trying To preserve that kind of Rosy pink color To it now they're going to be wet so Just be I want to be careful here to not Burn myself too bad Foreign [Music] I love the smell of duck meat of any Form cooking and duck fat like that

Aroma to me is like one of the most Delicious smells in the world Just a little bit of black pepper in There and then I'm gonna hit him with a Touch of salt as well we're gonna season It a few times through the process I Personally don't like to flip these I Feel like that's how you get them cooked Yeah I'm just gonna Hammer this one side Really good I've never done it only on One side I've always flipped it I mean Most of the time you would flip it but I Find that for this like if you flip it Once it carries over it's not like You're eating it right away right so you Just really need just that little extra Like depth of flavor for Browning Exactly that's a good tip Once we're at that place that we know We're done and for me the way I can tell Obviously aside from the aroma which is Hard to articulate is really looking for That nice ring of that kind of pale Color around the outside like this one Right here is for sure done so that can Come out It's like I know that obviously a Mediator we're pretty much we're pretty Much all wild you know like stuff that You harvest yourself you know Wild game But for me when I think about wild and Hole and a lot of the message that we Share with people one of the things We're advocating for is this notion of

Using everything you know and being Responsible in that way and so if you're Gonna buy for example like if you're Gonna get farm-raised Ducks don't just Buy duck breasts like make sure you're Using the legs and the thighs and in This case make sure you're using the Innards too like don't let that stuff go To waste it's one of those things that I Learned that when I started hunting that You don't get just the breasts or just The legs you get the whole damn animal And you gotta cook with the whole thing And should I go ahead and yeah check Those shallots in there if you can Even though you may not hunt for your Meal you still get to make a conscious Decision on what you consume and I think Giving people those options and teaching Them how to work with underutilized cuts Is really important right and for me you Know my world's a little bit different Because as a professional chef obviously When I'm cooking for my guests I'm not Cooking truly Wild game you know I can't In my restaurants and so I try to take That extra step that a lot of hunters Will spend out harvesting yourself like I take that energy and apply it to Finding the absolute best producers I Can around the country who are doing the Most ethical things with their animals Or vegetables even yeah we used to throw These bay leaves in here I like to let

Those kind of blister and Blossom in This as well I think that's this is Something I kind of picked up Um cooking a lot of Creole Cuisine is Allowing the bay leaves to develop in The fat and again if you actually if You're starting to run low on fat and we Are we've got a nice bowl of duck right Here so we can just add a little bit More to it and letting those bay leaves Like wake up in that fat makes a huge Difference When you hand me our spices [Music] This is totally a judgment call thing But I think That looks pretty good Nutmeg This one's tiny I don't need that much Of that Yeah All of these all of them And what we're going to do is just give These one second to kind of blister in This pan and we're going to add start Adding our alcohol to this we have a Cocktail yeah I have this is like the Long Island Iced Tea of Pate so I have a Mix of different stuff I have brandy or Cognac here I have red vermouth so like A sweet vermouth and then I also this is Kind of the secret one I have Madeira Wine that I have already used to soak Um golden raisins in so it's really

Raisin so all right watch out this is Where it gets real [Music] Thank you [Music] So I just want this liquid to cook down Some but actually to cook a little of That alcohol off of it and tighten up Because we don't want to make the we Don't want to make it too runny Aroma wise it smells so good yeah it's Like it's got this kind of wintry sweet Kind of Aroma to it which is just so so Nice oh yeah that's really lovely All right so once we get like this where It starts to look like syrupy to a Certain degree but it's not it's not Completely gone then I'm gonna grab my Plate with my livers and this is why I Don't flip them we're just gonna pour This hot stuff right over the top of Them You're not really cooking if the fire Alarms don't go off right that's right My mom had that sign in the kitchen of Our house crowded yeah Thank you Well we know it's done because the smoke Detector went off That's our always our sign would you Mind tossing this in the fridge okay This needs about five minutes just we Don't want it blazing hot it's not going To get ice cold but just cool it down

And then we can go into the next step Good [Music] All right awesome yeah these look good They smell so good so at this point it's Just we're blending everything up Foreign To think like well when you could eat Just liver and onions why go through the Process of making this spread and I Believe very firmly that when you do Something like this you're stretching Your meat and you get to share it with Other people you can freeze it for later And I just think it offers it lends Itself to more versatility right and I Just think it's also a little less Intimidating not on the cook's side but On the diner side because I know lots of People who just they just wouldn't be Willing to actually sit there and eat a Lot of cut a piece of liver but they're Willing this is It's a Gateway delivery You know this is like everybody loves Like a really rich bread yeah so this is A good start Okay [Music] All right so it came in the cream cheese If you don't mind or just start a little Chucking little pellets of cream cheese In here And as you're watching it like if it Starts to get thick and it looks like it

Doesn't want to blend that's when we add A splash of cream So once we have the cream cheese in There then we're gonna add some butter A little bit more cream [Music] Oh there we go All right I'm gonna give it a taste see what you Think so it should have like an Herbaceousness a little sweetness it Should also have a tiny bit of Bitterness from the vermouth in there Which is going to help contrast the Mushrooms really well that's really good I can definitely tell there's cream Cheese in there because it does add just Like the teeniest bit of sweetness to it Even Tang to it exactly well that's it Is that like I kind of specify that you Have to use like Philadelphia brand Cream cheese because it's Tangier but Also the cream cheese and this is to me The really thing that makes it so Important is the fact that even when It's ice cold it's soft and that really Improves the texture of this because a Lot of Pate can get very gritty and Almost tough once it cools down and we Want this to still be nice and smooth And spreadable Foreign Look at this I want to just show you Something here so anytime you're working

With liver there's loads of like little Veins and connective tissue and that's What all this sort of like fibrous Looking stuff that's left behind and It's not very nice to eat there's Nothing wrong with it it doesn't taste Bad but yeah it's just a nice step like If you're gonna take the effort step to Like get that mouth feel that's really Silky and soft So flavor wise cooking wise this is done But you can see it's it's really really Soft so what I think is best is put this In the fridge okay I like it to sit for At least an hour to really like firm up Some so it has a spreadable consistency But it's not watery would you pop this In the fridge for me sure all right I'm Gonna clean up and then we can talk Mushrooms Foreign Ly the mushrooms yeah that's that's the Part that we're all here for and you Know as a matter of fact I'm gonna leave These with you because I know everybody Has a way of cleaning mushrooms like They have a particular version of this And there's I don't know that there's a Right and a wrong I think it kind of Depends I think there's a right and Wrong I assumed you would have an opinion on That so I'm going to let you clean the Mushrooms tell me what you think I say

That mushrooms are like sponges and they Can absorb water there are some people Out there who have proven this to be a Myth and if you've ever foraged and Picked a mushroom after a rain you can Literally squeeze that mushroom and see The moisture release so it is holding in Moisture but that moisture kind of Prevents it from getting that really Nice Browning that I like and so I like My mushrooms to be really dry and I will Only wash them under running water if They desperately need it but these are Really clean so I'm just gonna take a Toothbrush and just brush them dry That's all it needs yeah and I'm just Kind of looking through these this Porcini right here because you know know How it is it's like I love porcinis but This is one of the issues with them is That sometimes you pick them and you get One like this and you just get one That's been decimated and it's not all Like that's the one thing I would stress To people is that maybe not the whole Mushroom is shot so like in this case I Can use some of it some of it is still In decent enough shape yeah but not the Whole thing yeah and that's the thing About working with wild mushrooms is you Don't always get what you want like when You go to a grocery store you expect it To be like this perfect thing it's like Very

Um standardized and I love that when you Get wild food it's like at what point When you pick this you know like where Is it in its stage of life and like all The other elements that have affected it And I I think it makes it more fun more Challenging and special exactly So one of my ingredients that I Absolutely love with mushrooms it really Doesn't matter what variety of mushrooms Is celery you know when you're talking About all the the levels of like flavor And texture one of the things that Sometimes is neglected is Components that increase the rawness of Something that bring back that raw bite Yeah and that's what celery really is Able to do especially if you don't cook It too long I think celery is very Underrated I didn't really think much About celery more than like the base of A soup or something and then I grew it One year in my garden and I was mind Blown by how flavorful it could be right And honestly that's one of the reasons Why I like to take the hearts out of Kind of bigger store-bought celery I Watch people throw this away more often Than not like like they only use the Outside tough green part they throw this Away when in reality like it's much more Tender and the flavor the celery flavor In the hearts is like 10 times what it Is in the like big giant green stalks

Also these leaves right here are one of My absolute favorite and I will use it In this term like I see them as an herb And that's what the way I treat them So I've noticed you've got golden Raisins golden raisins that's really fun And uh pretty unique what are we doing With them also I think this comes a bit From growing up in the south in that I Love Madeira like it's one of my Favorite things in the world Madeira Factors into it factors into southern Cooking a lot and to me the flavor of Madeira is the flavor of of you know Raisins in it and specifically that Golden raisin flavor the reason I like It in this dish is that we were saying This earlier that how hard it can be When cooking a chanterelle not to lose The raw flavor of the chanterelle and Really the answer is that it's Impossible to not lose some of it but What you can do is kind of replace it With things that strike that same note From a flavor perspective that Apricoty flavor will come back in the Form of these raisins when you add two Ingredients that share like similar Aromatic profiles you just elevate it Exactly exactly I'm gonna get the pan Going real quick so okay for this it Might sound a little bit crazy but I Don't actually want to roast these Really hard because we have the really

Dark flavor from the liver and so I'm Gonna get some butter really Brown like Burn wazette but then we're just gonna Drop the mushrooms in it like and let Them sit right you know like undisturbed And that'll be enough cooking so okay I Also grabbed some shiitakes from a Little local producer here because I Thought they were pretty and just kind Of add some if we want I like the Texture of shiitakes I just think they They have such a great texture and They're a nice contrast too because Again it's more earthy yeah well and I Think that it actually somewhat makes The point to why a chanterelle is unique And different when you taste it Alongside other mushrooms I completely Agree and I think that so many people Get very wrapped up in morels there's This cult following it's people are Obsessed with morels and I honestly Think a chanterelle is just so much more Special in the fact that it's just got This really special Aroma and taste and Texture that can't be really replicated Like if it's up to me I would take a Chanterelle every day of the week over In Merle I would too I would too [Music] Watch out Danielle very hot Yeah that's another one of my favorite Aromas of all time is browned butter Yeah

All right so just add those in there Into that hot butter not all of them Though we're gonna just we're gonna cook Them in batches here like this is going To be plenty for our first round here I Want it you never want to like get them Too crowded because we still want to get Some color but what I don't want to do Is like really really just overcook These I'm trying to just get them cooked Through so That's enough for the amount of butter That we have in the pan here and I'm Just going to let them sit I am going to Add a little bit of salt now so that if They do have any moisture it'll go ahead And come out of them I'm also going to drop my little celery Batons in And these will just soften just a little Bit I'm also going to throw some more Tarragon in but I'm not going to chop it I don't want to eat a bunch of tarragon This time since we have it in the Pate So I'm just dropping it in add a little Aroma yeah the other thing I like to add Now is the golden raisins I forgot to actually ask you where did You get these mushrooms I know you went Out yesterday with Hayden right yeah Hayden and I went foraging uh in here in Montana just not too far outside of the The city of Bozeman and that's one of

The things I actually like about Foraging for mushrooms is that it feels To me like it's How do I say this like it's a it's Something anybody can do even if you Live in a big city because those Mushrooms grow Everywhere and if you live in New York City there's still going to be wild Mushrooms just outside if you know where To look and these mushrooms especially Are very accessible all throughout the US and I think that's really important For people who may never ever go hunting A day in their lives but if they want to Have a deeper connection to their food Being able to get outside and like Reconnect with nature is is a really Great way to do it and I think it just Teaches us a little bit more about the Value and importance of the ingredients That we Harvest exactly and I think one Of the things that's great about Mushroom foraging is that it it feels Accessible to everybody regardless of Where you are there's opportunities like This and that's it's just really cool That everybody has that chance to Harvest something that's truly wild yeah So I added some chive sticks to this and Some celery leaves as well I'm also going to add a little bit of Lemon zest [Music]

A little p is here to this is just a Touch of lemon juice [Music] The colors and the textures are just so Pretty it is so pretty it's like a warm Salad exactly All right do you want to actually taste This thing yes I do would you grab the Liver the Pate out of the fridge and I'm Going to grab some toast and let's Assemble it all together here [Music] Thank you This looks so pretty it's nice it's just A nice little light lunch like with a Salad on the side like some greens meal For me yeah absolutely and you actually Made a comment earlier that I think was Really smart like this filling could be A ravioli filling you could cook your Ravioli and then drop them into this Brown butter just like these mushrooms And that could be a dish like yeah and That's cooking that's what's so great About cooking is that you have one Vision I have a different Vision there's It's not right or wrong absolutely and I Think a lot of people at home have this Little hurdle like you're a professional Cook and people think that there's this Like right in this wrong way and there Are ways of making things definitely Better but I always try to tell people Like make sure that you're eating

Something that you're just really going To enjoy and appreciate right to me that Is like my ultimate goal for what I do And teaching people how to cook is is Like I want you to Value this food as Much as possible Once you start cooking it it's not mine Anymore it's yours yeah you know and That's the great thing about cooking Yeah said enough let's actually taste This I know this is so beautiful [Music] Very satisfying and the Pate brings a Richness to it and earthiness but I Don't think it covers up the mushroom Flavor at all I think you very much Still get the mushroom flavor on top It's a really nice combination yeah the Pate is so rich and flavorful but you Still have that moment where the Chanterelle gets to shine right I mean I Think all of this stuff together Especially with the celery it's like Such an unexpected combination right Exactly that's what they're there for Again because all we want to do here Really is prove why the chanterelle or Really any forage mushroom but Especially the chanterelle is so unique You know and the easiest way in my Opinion to do that is to serve it Against its counterparts it really Highlights it in a special way and I Think chanterelles because they are so

Hyper seasonal that this allows us to Celebrate something that we might have To wait a whole year again to eat Exactly well I feel very fortunate thank You for bringing them you're welcome Thank you for showing me some new ways To cook with a mushroom that I really Really love