January Food Notes

January 2022 – World Tour: Lyon

We have moved out of Italy and are starting our world tour. I thought Lyon the most appropriate place to start for a few reasons. There is a storied history between the city of Lyon and Italy dating back to Catherine de Medici in the 16th century; there is a lot of pasta in Lyon. Does classic French food as we know it actually come from the influence of transplanted Italian aristocracy? There has been a long debate on this with a lot of feeling on both the French and Italian side. For me this is fun. 


  1. I lived in Lyon for 6 months when I was 25. I played music in clubs every night and toured boulangeries and charcuteries in the morning with my host family. It was heavenly and part of the back drop that made me want to become a chef. The food is both rustic and extremely technical (see Pâté en Croûte). The culture is honest and a little crude but with a kindness (see…me). I love it there, I still kinda want to move back.

What We Have Prepared For You This Week:

Gratin de Macaroni à la Lyonnaise 

There is in fact pasta in France. In fact, in Lyon there is a good bit of it. In Lyon there is gratin everything. This is a classic representation of the dish with an array of melty french cheeses, L’Oca’s rigatoni, bechamel and garlicky breadcrumbs. Contains gluten, dairy, capsaicin.  Best 4 days if refrigerated or 1 month, if frozen.

Soupe à l’Oignon Lyonnaise

The original french onion soup. We made this with mounds of deeply caramelized texas onions, rich beef stock and our housemade roasted onion powder. (The vegetarian version is a rich mushroom & vegetable stock with mushroom & onion powders).

There are big ole croutons and some gruyere and comte cheese to sprinkle over while re warming. We timed this well for the cold front coming through this weekend. Contains dairy, allium.  Best before 4 days, refrigerated.

Pâté en croûte

The most technically challenging dish we have made in the 2 plus years of our subscriptions. The versions of these I ate in Lyon seemed like they were impossible to recreate and inspired me to dig in as a cook and I’ve spent the last 20 years figuring this one out. A pâté of pork and pancetta ground together with hunks of prosciutto, pistachio, carrot and fennel. Baked in a flaky pastry dough. This is extremely rich and decadent and I am so very happy to get to share this with y’all. Contains allium, nuts, gluten.  Best in 3 days, refrigerated.

Mushroom Mousseline en Croute (VEG)

I am equally proud of this expression and this feels and tastes like other similar items I ate in Lyon. It is a rich mushroom mousse mounted with slow roasted wild mushrooms and shiitake mushroom caps poached in Vermouth and cream … and then studded with pistachios. Contains allium, dairy & gluten. Best in 3 days, refrigerated.

Salad Lyonnaise

I’ve made / eaten this salad more than just about any. It may be my favorite salad. Bitter greens (a mix of Steelbow Frisee & chicories), pancetta lardons, poached farm eggs and a bright mustardy vinaigrette. Please eat this in the next 48 hours. We left the poached eggs nestled right in the greens. You want to eat this one first. Best in 2 days, refrigerated.

Praline roses

A classic and kind of funny presentation of Texas pecans candied with rose water and pink sugar. You see these at every little confection shop in Lyon. They catch your eye. Just try to stop eating them.  Contain nuts.  Best in 3 weeks.


Cooking Instructions: 

Here are some recipes for this meal. I would like to note though that these ingredients are absolutely for you to experiment with. Feel free to add on to them, or even just use the ingredients one by one in your own cooking!

Gratin de Macaroni à la Lyonnaise (Plan for 35 min preparation)

            • Preheat your oven to 350º
            • Take out pasta bake and let temper for at least 15 min.
            • Bake, lid on for about 30 min. 
            • Remove the lid of the foil container bake for another 5-10 min, just to toast the breadcrumbs. 
            • Divide and serve

Soupe à l’Oignon Lyonnaise (Plan for 7 min preparation)

  • Pour soup into a pot, bring to a simmer. 
  • If your oven has a broiler, please set to broil. 
  • Put your hot soup into heatproof bowls/crocs. Set crouton in each bowl and top with cheese. 
  • Broil for 2-3 minutes just to melt cheese

Salad Lyonnaise (Plan for 3 min preparation)

  • Let pancetta (or mushrooms) temper for a few minutes. You are welcome to crip in a pan if you fancy.
  • Divide your salad greens onto two plates. Place poached egg in the middle of the greens sprinkle around the lardons and dress with the vinaigrette

As always, thank you for joining us on our regional adventures through Italy…excited to see where next month takes us!