Introducing Foie Gras

Different cultures and different countries around the world have their own culinary traditions and delicacies that in our modern world can be tasted by anyone. These traditional dishes and recipes have their own history and taste with which they make proud their owners. With the open world markets and unlimited traveling opportunities they are all shared across the world and bring delight to the ones which tastes they suit. With this the global culinary can improve and become even richer.

Foie gras, the French for “fatty liver” is considered a luxury culinary ingredient made from the liver of goose or duck with special technique that makes it extra fattened. Foie Grass is a popular French delicacy with flavor described as delicate, buttery, and rich unlike the ordinary duck or goose liver. It can be cooked whole or prepared into parfait, mousse or pâté or served alongside another main dish as accompaniment. The normal weight of duck’s liver is around 50 grams, while foie gras version has to be at least 300 grams. The fat of the duck or goose liver is considered closer in chemical composition to olive oil than it is to butter and lard. This makes its use in an every diet more pleasant for the heart.

Foie gras is made by using a technique of force feeding through which the liver is specially fattened. The geese and ducks are fed by force with corn through feeding tube. This process is also known as gavage. At least two times a day a worker feeds the birds using specially designed feeding tube for the purpose with a mash of corn, water and oil. The compound weighs around 2 pounds and is estimated as 20-30% of the body weight of a normal bird. Force feeding through a feeding tube is letting the weight of the fed bird become significantly more than a normally fed one. This process makes the liver of the bird grow 10 times larger and produce more fat.

Although in the modern days France is considered to be the home of foie gras this technique of producing fattened bird liver is well known to history. The first known evidence of fattening birds through force feeding comes from ancient Egypt.  There people used to push down the throat of the birds food in order to achieve the same results. From the Egypt this technique then spread to the Mediterranean in what is now Greece. Even later it is known from Latin text that in Roman Empire there was something quite similar called fecur ficatum means fig liver. After the fall of the Roman Empire the duck and goose liver became absent from the European kitchen until centuries later the Jewish gastronomes brought it back to the European markets. The French then discovered the benefits of fat liver and so they kept producing it.