Deconstructing Le Pigeon’s Mussels Vinaigrette

A closer look at Gabriel Rucker’s mad method for mussels.

By Benjamin Tepler April 3, 2013

Mussels Vinaigrette with horseradish panna cotta, green strawberry, chilies

Welcome back to Anatomy of a Dish, our weekly dissection of Portland’s most delicious, multi-layered creations. This week we look under the microscope at Le Pigeon’s Mussels Vinaigrette. James Beard Award-Winning chef Gabriel Rucker went all out on this dish, compressing celery, shaving green strawberry ice, and morphing mussel juice into panna cotta. It’s a cool combination of dairy tang, oceanic brine, and chile heat.

Steamed mussels: Juicy whole mussels, tossed in a dressing of concentrated mussel juice, white wine, garlic, shallot, red jalapenos, and whisked with a sauvignon blanc vinegar.

Panna cotta: A thick, spicy dairy base whipped with the remaining mussel juice, buttermilk, crème fraiche, horseradish, lemon juice, and gelatin.

Green strawberry granita: Unripe strawberries, blended with Clear Creek Blue Plum Brandy, lemon juice, simple syrup and frozen into shaved ice granita.  

Celery: Thick sliced celery, vacuum-sealed and compressed with apple juice and white pepper with a subtle aromatic funk.  

Green strawberries: Early, unripe strawberries that add fruity dimensions with a tart punch.

Red jalapenos: Scarlet slivers of mature jalapeno, lending flashes of heat. 

Baby micro-celery: Minature sprouts of the adult variety, with a diminutive celery flavor.  

Parsley oil: A simple blend of parsley and extra-virgin olive oil, glowing electric green with herbacious undertones. 

Le Pigeon
738 E Burnside St
(503) 546 - 8796
Every night : 5-10pm 

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