Make your world go round with these Michelin-star recipes
From Fanny Herpin’s focaccia to crispy chilli chicken, try your hand at these Michelin-certified recipes at home
At some point during the lockdown, we all grew weary of eating the same old food. We are only human after all and we crave food that’s out of the ordinary, food that makes our taste buds come alive.
That’s probably why so many people across the globe had a desire for culinary innovation in their own kitchens. It seemed like a secret Masterchef competition was going on pretty much everywhere you looked on social media. Hashtags such as #StressBaking and #QuarantineBaking are still being used to show off works of food art.
Psychology can explain this behaviour — it’s comfort food. When you bake bread or craft a sugary treat, it’s your way of generating a warm hug — and we all know we needed a ton of those during our harsher lockdown measures. Spending time in the kitchen soothed our nerves. It just so happened that we were all doing it at the same time, which led to a yeast shortage in April.
A quick trip down memory lane
Now you might wonder what Michelin has to do with food. Well, as it turns out, a great deal — and it has for some time now. It started with the Michelin guide, and its origins go way back to the turn of the century.
In 1889, brothers Andre and Edouard Michelin founded the iconic tyre company in the quaint French town of Clermont-Ferrand. At the time, there were only about 3,000 cars on the road. As you can imagine, this didn’t make good economic sense for a tyre company. So the brothers came up with an ingenious idea.
They compiled a small red guide filled with information for travellers to encourage motorists to drive out more. The guide was filled with details on the best places to visit, where to fill up with fuel, and how to change a tyre — which sounds like content marketing in its infancy.
For two decades, the guide came at no costs to motorists, but one day Andre Michelin saw his guides being used to prop up a workbench at a tyre shop. Since people only value what they pay for, a new Michelin guide was produced in 1920 with a price tag of seven francs. The new guide showcased a list of restaurants to visit, based on strict criteria.
As the guide grew in strength and influence, the brothers recruited a team of mystery diners (or inspectors) to visit restaurants to decide if they deserved a mention in the guide. In 1926, the guide began to award Michelin stars to restaurants with a single star. Five years later, more stars were awarded based on a hierarchy system of zero to three. Zero being “very good” and worth a visit and three “quite elite” and offering exceptional cuisine.
Shooting for the stars
No restaurant in SA has been awarded a Michelin star yet, but not for a lack of quality food. It’s simply because the Michelin inspectors do not operate here. We really wish they would because our restaurants will surely make the cut. A case in point is La Colombe, a restaurant in Franschhoek, which is rated as among the top restaurants in the world. It’s ranked 13th on Trip Advisor’s Top Fine Dining Restaurants in the World for 2020.
What we can celebrate is that we technically do have Michelin-star chefs. Chef Jan Hendrik was the first South African to receive a star for his restaurant in Nice, France.
Chef Jean Delport was also awarded a Michelin star for his restaurant in England. The Michelin guide has praised the restaurant for its skilfully crafted dishes that are creative and have an original style. When inventing new dishes, Delport stays true to the SA notion of “local is lekker”, which makes us proud. This shows the world that our culinary expertise can compete with the best in the world.
Sharing Michelin-star food on social media
Michelin decided to take people under its virtual wing as celebrated Michelin star chefs shared their mouthwatering recipes on social media for people to replicate. It then created a page with some of the most-loved recipes available for download and use to put their culinary skills to the test. Michelin also encouraged people on Facebook to share family recipes, which created a sense of community through food.
Some of the recipes to look forward to include Panna Cotta with Coffee, Fanny Herpin’s Focaccia, Crispy Chilli Chicken, Chouquettes, Wicky Priyan’s Langoustine and Clément Le Cam’s Lemon Cake.
So why not put on an apron and try out a few Michelin Star recipes for you and your family?
This article was paid for by Michelin.