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Springtime in the kitchen

By Louis-Marie Delmas | China Daily Asia | Updated: 2017-03-10 08:47

Springtime in the kitchen

Asparagus [Photo provided to China Daily]

Four questions for Jacky Tauvry, the chef de cuisine at Pierre, the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong's two Michelin-starred restaurant.

Is spring truly a time of anticipation for chefs?

Cooks always love springtime because it's the season of new vegetables, herbs, flowers and the first mushrooms.

What are the star foods of springtime and how do you prepare them?

Asparagus, morel mushrooms and new ratte potatoes from Noirmoutier are the queens of springtime. Then there are the miniature leeks and miniature carrots – all those little things that are so tasty and so pretty, and that bring such colour and freshness to dishes. The three main asparagus varieties are green, white and purple. This year, we're serving green asparagus with a piece of sea bream cooked slowly in citrus butter, and a salad made with fresh spring herbs like burnet, chervil, parsley and lemon balm. We also do a cream of Noirmoutier potatoes with a grapefruit reduction that we serve with poultry or fish. We cook morels in cream with all the new vegetables – it's very refreshing.

Springtime in the kitchen

Jacky Tauvry [Photo by Philippe Dova/China Daily]

What are your criteria when selecting your ingredients?

We're a French restaurant, so we work only with small French producers we know, who respect the product and the environment. For example, we select asparagus from growers in Touraine or Pertuis, which are France's asparagus capitals. The asparagus has a unique, delicately sweet taste. It's important because most of the asparagus you find in supermarkets here is industrially produced – the quality is totally different.

Have you got an asparagus recipe to share with our readers?

A very simple recipe is to peel some green asparagus stalks, cook them for five minutes in boiling water and then cool them in ice water. Arrange thin slices of comté on top and brown under the grill of your oven – delicious.


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