Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern

Season 3 Episode 5


Aired Monday 10:00 PM Oct 07, 2008 on Travel Channel

Episode Recap

Andrew is in Paris to examine its claim to food capital of the world. Food here is sort of an art form and every cook creates his own masterpieces. Andrew first gets to visit Rungis Market, one of the largest markets in the world with 15000 workers. It's not open to the public, but Andrew is invited inside. He has to wear scrubs in the sterile interior and he's not allowed to taste anything. Phillippe Bardet shows him fresh fruits and vegetables and giant tables with lungs, hearts and braised tripe. Cow heads are boiled here in aspic to make headcheese. Andrew also discovers lardo, a dessert of pure fat.

Andrew reveals that the French are deadly serious about fine dining, and he heads to the Michel Rostang Restaurant for example. Michel himself gets him pressed duck, which is served in its own juices squeezed out by the waiter at the table. Journalist Alexandre Cammas recommends Andrew try out the L'Ami Jean which creates fine dining with ordinary ingredients fast. Chef Stephane Jego creates simple bistro food such as blood sausage and squab (pigeon meat).
Andrew heads to find other locales that create simple food in volume. He locates the Place de la Madeleine and the Maille which has several types of mustard. At the Maison de la Truffe, Andrew finds specialized ham and aromatic truffles, its specialty. Author Clotide Dusolider invites Andrew to the cheese shop of Laureant DuBois to view 250 to 300 types of cheese and the special cellar used to age and perfect it.

Andrew is on to the Place de la Bastille to meet chef and author David Lebowitiz to shop for the ingredients for bacon and eggs ice cream. They then head to the home of a friend at Chateau St. Hilare to cook their meals. Andrew marvels at David's technique, but he prepares rabbit livers in butter and vinegar along with dishes of sautéed lamb tongues, raw sea urchin, fresh scallop, passion fruit and a salad of leek, asparagus and artichoke. They are joined by their hostess Natalie and her daughter Betty.

Andrew next meets chef Pierre Gagnaire who works with scientist Herve This of the National Institute for Agricultural Research for using science to amplify the taste of his dishes. This has used molecular gastronomy to utilize the science of egg whites to amplify Gagnaire's dishes. Andrew marvels over his dessert creations, believing it to be the next wave in French cuisine.

Andrew wraps his Paris visit with the L. Escargot Montorguiel in Soisson once visited by Charlie Chapain, Marcel Pruest and Jackie Onassis. Dominique and Sylvie Pieru here farm snails for escargot and inspect eggs for snail caviar, another new dish. They show their inspection process, two hours for one kilogram of eggs. Texture is everything as they sort for and condition. They can be eaten raw. Andrew tries them and calls them the next big thing.
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