Le Suquet Laguiole - FRANCE

Poached endives with saffron, marinated char

"Endives are often misunderstood, because of their bitter taste. This bitterness is entirely natural and an inherent part of the vegetable's charm, which I'd like people to re-discover" warns Sébastien Bras.

This is yet another story of the Bras family, because it is his cousin who cultivates them in the ground, just 10 km from Laguiole. Their quality is assured. Sébastien prepares them in a saffron-perfumed bouillon, to which he adds Alpine fennel and various other herbs, tarragon, chervil, sorrel, fennel, and wild garlic, both the leaves and the buds. "I like to marry them with char fillets marinated in coarse salt mixed with sugar, a complex egg-based vinaigrette, oil, and some chopped herbs which round off the dish to perfection. I recently stuffed them with a mixture of bread, egg and herbs and then pan-fried them in duck fat. I even serve them as a dessert; endives poached in honey, mellowed with the skin of the milk and grapefruit."