Balance would also describe Chef Beaufour’s final platted product. Six courses with expertly paired wine flights, brought about a genuine harmony among the twelve guests seated at this chef’s table.
The stars always shine brighter at Primland
I was honored with a seat at Primland’s chef’s table this weekend. As a regular guest at this unique, ultra-luxurious 12,000 acre resort, I have dined with many of the great chefs that have called this kitchen home over the past several years. But, this was a very special chef’s table. Chef Fabien Beaufour is the executive chef at the sister resort, Domaine des Etangs in Massignac, France. He was invited to showcase his formidable skills for a select few members of the Primland Resort. True to the nature of this exclusive membership, seats at this table were not available to the general public.
Primland Resort Meadows of Dan, Virginia
Domaine des Etangs Messignac, France
Domaine des Etangs, an 11th-century castle within the pristine, remote Charente Limousine region of France. Formerly, a retreat for the Primat family, the castle has been thoroughly transformed to exceed the standards of the most discerning travelers while remaining true to the vision of the property, as a natural preserve. It is this harmony between old and new, that is the foundation of the property, and it is carried out through every detail in an effort to bring about balance and wellness for its guests. I had the pleasure to meet with Chef Beaufour in the spa the day after this amazing meal. A spa lover himself, Chef Beaufour shared with me his belief that most great spas also have incredible food. He believes that mind and body must be nourished properly to achieve balance in life. His goal is to create an optimal state of wellbeing for the guest. He does this by managing the entire process from farm to table. Organic food grown on property is respectfully managed in a way that does not harm the land while keeping an eye on the long-term health of this pristine 2,400 acre preserve. It is this deep respect for balance that guides him in planning, planting, growing, harvesting, and preparation of his dishes.
Balance would also describe Chef Beaufour’s final plated product. Six courses with expertly paired wine flights, brought about a genuine harmony among the twelve guests seated at this chef’s table.
Guests of Domaine des Etangs are invited to explore the gardens, pick produce that is pleasing to them, and bring it in to Chef Beaufour to prepare for them. It is this connection with nature that also feeds the soul and achieves the desired state of wellbeing and balance.
Fabien Beaufour prepares a six course chef’s table for the members of Primland Resort.
I was a guest of Primland for this special dinner. All opinions are my own. This is my life.
Prepare the relish first. Toss together all ingredients and salt to taste. Let marinate for one hour at room temperature.
Heat two large heavy skillets over medium high heat. Get a sturdy spatula ready. Add oil or clarified butter. Season Fish with salt and pepper. Place fish skin side up in a pan and cook very briefly. Flip and place skin side down. Press the fish firmly down with the spatula to keep the skin from curling. Cook until skin is golden and crisp and fish is cook through. Serve immediately. Top each portion with the citrus and pepper relish.
My notes from class, we chard the peppers over a flame on the gas stove to roast them and peeled the burnt skins off into a kitchen towel. He mentioned canned roasted peppers as a back up if grilling and charing the peppers at home is not an option. Also, be sure to section and remove any pith from the orange slices. That portion can be bitter and it is worth the effort it takes while sectioning the oranges.
3 tbl chopped, mixed herbs (parsley, chives, dill, tarragon, basil, or a selection of your favorites)
Stir together butter, lemon zest and herbs. Bring 2 gallons of water to boil, add 4 tbl salt.
Add lobsters and cook for 11-13 minutes. Remove lobsters to a platter and serve accompanied with personal dishes of soft lemon-herb butter. Crck the claws and tail before serving, but leave in the shell.
Class notes: Try to pick female lobsters as they are sweeter. They have much smaller, daintier legs than male lobsters. Do not over cook.
Roasted Atlantic Salmon with Spinach and Horseradish Crust
4 filets of Salmon, skinned and bones removed
Spinach and Horseradish Crust:
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbl butter
1 shallot, minced
1 tbl prepared horseradish
1/4 cup cream
Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking dish with oil. Season salmon filets with salt and pepper. Place in baking dish.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add butter and once it foams, add shallots and garlic. Cook until fragrant. Add Spinach and stir to wilt. Add cream and horseradish. Cook to glaze spinach. Remove from heat. Season with salt, pepper and Worcestershire to taste.
Top each salmon filet with the spinach. Place in oven and bake until fish is cooked and flakes easily with a fork or temperature of 135 degrees. Plate each portion and serve with a lemon wedge.