Created by the French Dairy Board and the European Union, the Butter of Europe Campaign aims to promote and build awareness to the use, benefits and gastronomic value of European butter.
To this end, three of the Middle East’s leading chefs have been chosen, thanks to their flair for using the finest butters, to appear in an exclusive recipe book “Butter of Europe: French butter, the secret to make the difference”, distributed in the Middle East and Asia.
Chef Ahmad Fraijeh from Saudi Arabia, Chef Mohanad Alshamali from Dubai and Lebanese- based Chef Maroun Chedid were selected to have their creations featured in the book which not only showcases a range of recipes from leading chefs from around the world but also highlights the history of butter and top tips on how to use it.
Butter of Europe was present at the Beirut Cooking Festival last November 8, 9 and 10th, animating Masterclasses and cooking demonstrations through the 3 days of the gathering. Visitors had the chance not only to discover and taste recipes with Francois Robin but also to participate in hands-on workshops and improve their skills when cooking with butter.
On November 7th, 2018, two workshops were held at the Maroun Chedid Cooking Academy welcoming Lebanon’s leading chefs in the morning and the media & bloggers in the evening.
Maroun Chedid lead the chef’s workshop through several demonstrations on the superiority of European butter and its importance in gastronomy and in bringing out special flavours in cooking. Speaking at the event, he said “European butter is a versatile product, a delicious enhancer for so many foods and the essential ingredient for baking”.
During the blogger’s workshop, he teamed up with Francois Robin, French Dairy specialist awarded Meilleur Ouvrier de France Fromager, who started the workshop by making butter using a manual churn, demonstrating the easy and natural process of turning dairy cream into butter. He then created some flavoured butters using different ingredients such as seaweed, Curry, Zaatar, pistachio & dates.
From a gastronomic point of view, Maroun prepared his famous Mediterranean Land & Sea, Winter Vegetables with Smoked Butter, created exclusively for the Butter of Europe book.
Guests had the chance to learn more about European butter and its importance in capturing and sublimating the aromas of the ingredients adding sophistication to the simplest dishes and creating alchemy with unusual flavours.
More than 95% of chefs in France and Europe say that butter is essential for cooking and baking, especially for its flavour. In the kitchen, it tells a story, it leads the way. New uses have emerged, disrupting classic recipes and defining future trends. Its malleable texture enables it to create audacious fantasies. This is why it is now widely used in cutting edge and refined dishes... But, above all, this aroma capturer has tickled the imagination of the Chefs, who create unusual, sophisticated recipes to surprise audiences of insiders becoming increasingly numerous and demanding. This product is more than just an ingredient, it is a flavour enhancer. Used both in elaborate kitchens and simple recipes, the face of butter has changed. No one hesitates to put it out on the table, to highlight it as a noble product. Indispensable to new culinary trends, butter is a source of inspiration that never grows old.
Dubbed ‘the jeweler of gastronomy’, Maroun Chedid, plays an active role in developing and spreading Lebanese Mediterranean gastronomy throughout the world. Awarded in 2013 the prestigious title of ‘Chef de L’Année a L’International’ by the Toques Blanches du Monde, Maroun’s cuisine recognizes the authenticity of Lebanese food and its traditions, enriching it with spices and surprising combinations to appeal to a modern palate. He is also the founder of Maroun Chedid SAL, which services include: culinary consulting services, specialty catering, Georgette by Maroun Chedid - Mediterranean terroir gourmet products, the Maroun Chedid Cooking Academy as well as Ritage Garden & Ritage by Maroun Chedid, his signature restaurant, operating in Beirut & Riyadh. Maroun is one of the main judges on Top Chef Middle East, aired one MBC 1, MBC Masr and LB2 International. Sharing his passion for cooking with his viewers, he has built a loyal following around the world.
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