People around the world enjoy all kinds of weird dishes…. from crispy tarantulas to jellied moose nose and now…even snails! The French have an acquired taste, but how acquired does it really get? Escargots will make you ask just that question!
In this article, we’re covering everything you need to know about the French delicacy Escargot (Snails).
It’s not a new craze or anything, in fact, this dish has been around for centuries. Snail shells have been eaten since prehistoric times according to the excavation sites.
But the Romans, in particular, were very fond of Escargot and even claimed it as an elite food. According to Pliny, the elder, Fluvius Hirpinus fed his snails with wine and meat. That probably proves just how important they were in roman cuisine.
Nowadays, the dishes are made with land snails which have been known to be edible. And they’re exclusive to many areas of France and the UK.
How Does Escargot Taste?
Before you try and muster up enough courage to try a snail, you should have some idea of what it tastes like. Usually, the snail itself doesn’t have too much flavor of its own except a gritty aftertaste, which you get after eating mollusks.
For the weak-stomached people, the after taste might be off-putting, but a properly cooked snail will leave you with a smooth buttery taste. Basically, it doesn’t have a taste of its own, instead, it picks up the flavor of the sauce. So make sure the sauces are worth it!
In heliciculture, the snails are first prepared by purging of their undesirable contents, this process usually involves a mix of fasting, purging or just feeding them something they like! Farm-raised snails are usually fed ground cereals. Yum?
- Wild Burgundy snails de-shelled - 36
- Shallots, minced - 4oz
- Garlic, peeled and finely chopped - 1 head
- Parsley - 1 bunch
- Butter - 3 tablespoons
- Brioche, cut into 36 small rings - 1 small
- Butter - 1 pound
- Italian parsley, chopped - 1 bunch
- Tarragon - 1/4 bunch
- Garlic - 1/2 head
- Fine sea salt - 2 teaspoons
- Freshly ground black pepper - 1 teaspoon
Butter Sauce Recipe
- Wash and prepare the parsley by removing its stems.
- Chop up your peeled garlic.
- Then mix all the ingredients together until it's a smooth paste-like consistency (for this you'll need room temperature butter).
- Then season!
Main Dish Recipe
- First and foremost, rinse the snails and sauté them at low heat.
- then add butter and sauté the snails with shallots and garlic for almost 10 minutes.
- Next, season to taste and add chopped up parsley.
- For now, let them cool.
- After they've cooled, assemble in 12 snail gratin dishes with one snail in each hole and garlic butter up to the brim.
- Top them with fine brioche croutons.
- Lastly, preheat the oven at 350 Fahrenheit and bake each dish for 7 minutes, or until the butter is all bubbly.
You could surprise your friends with this unique dish or try it all by yourself if you’re a fan of oysters and mussels!