Behind-the-Scenes Dinner with Ariane and Les Marmitons

Have you ever wanted to cook with a whole group of friends? If so, you might be interested in Les Marmitons. The members of this gentlemen’s social club share an interest in fine food, wine, and the culinary arts, and they gather monthly to cook multi-course meals under the tutelage of a professional chef. Of course, they eat and drink together after all the work (and wash the dishes!). It’s culinary camaraderie at its best.

The local New Jersey chapter of Les Marmitons often uses D’Artagnan products in their cooking, and the members were excited to hold a special dinner event at our Union, NJ headquarters this week. This time they let Ariane Daguin, our founder and owner, and our in-house chef Christophe Gondeau do the cooking, while they watched. Read on for a behind-the-scenes glimpse of D’Artagnan and more about the delicious evening.

This looks like a happy crowd.
Les Marmitons ready for the first course. Photo: Paul Eggermann

After a tour of our warehouse and offices, Ariane demonstrated how to de-vein a whole lobe of foie gras and make a terrine. Everyone enjoyed a slice of foie gras terrine with confiture made from tomatoes picked in our garden this summer. Member André Chabanel was tasked with pairing wines for the meal, and he chose Willm Gewurztraminer from Alsace for the foie gras course.

Les Marmitons Foie Gras Serving

Then it was time to tackle the classic cassoulet. Chef Christophe had already prepared two large pots of cassoulet, and the smell of cooking beans and meat taunted the crowd as they watched Ariane assemble our new small cassoulet recipe kit, designed to serve 4-6 people.

Based on the cassoulet from Ariane’s region of France, our recipe has many steps, but it’s much simpler than it looks. The result is a rich and hearty stew of beans, cured duck, and sausages. This culinary gem of Southwest France was devoured with gusto by Les Marmitons, paired with Bastide Miraflors Syrah and Grenache, a Côtes du Roussillon wine.

Les Marmitons Cassoulet on plate
The perfect combination of every meat in the cassoulet.

Finally, for dessert, chef Christophe whipped up crème brûlée made with duck eggs, paired with a La Forcine Vouvray. And then Ariane opened a bottle of Tariquet Armagnac because that’s how they do it in Gascony.

Les Marmitons Tray of Creme Brulee

It was a pleasure to host this special event, and to share culinary knowledge and lore with Les Marmitons! At the end of the night, club President Efrain Raices gave Ariane a certificate making her an official friend of Les Marmitons.

Les Marmitons Christophe, Ariane, Efrain

For those gentlemen interested in honing their culinary skills, Les Marmitons offers a friendly place to do it. For more about the club, its history and purpose, visit Les Marmitons International.

If you are in the New Jersey area and would like to meet and eat with the local chapter of Les Marmitons, there are still a few tickets left for their 6-course benefit dinner on October 27, 2018.

Special thanks to Eric Eisenbud and Paul Eggermann of Les Marmitons for the photos.

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