The Montréal association of food journalists held a Souper aux abats last Monday and I was the guest of honour. This is the best way to attend a dinner as you get credit for the food, but it's the chef who does all the work, a big thank you to Patrick. The menu was loosely based on recipes in my book Odd Bitsafter a discussion with Chef Patrick Plouffe of Chez Bouffe, Gildas Meneu, Mario Hinse from L'Epicerie. The matching wines were chosen by Guénaël Revel, don't ask, all I remember is a zinfandel that I liked because I usually don't.
In my book I suggest using tongue instead of ham in a croque monsieur. Patrick made three different croques, using duck, veal and beef tongue.
On the menu at Chez Bouffe is a duck heart tartare, and he served it with a slice of battered, fried gherkin. Readers of this blog know how much I love beef heart tartare. This dish proves you can make tartare with any animal heart, and duck heart makes a very rich and creamy tartare.
My favourite dish was the brain ravioli, made with veal brains, not lamb thanks to a last minute substitution by the supplier. Patrick added toasted pine nuts, which gave the dish a nice crunch. Everyone who hates, or who thinks they hate brains should taste this dish. I'm sure it will convert them to the delights of this delicate odd bit.