What actually the Escargot is? A savory hors d’oeuvre

by whatsmind

 
Cooked escargot can be served in varied recipes with a plethora of complimentary dishes. The most commonly consumed recipe is the toasted piece of baguette placed into shells.  

What does it mean by Escargot? 

The word Escargot originates from French and it translates to a snail. Although, it is Escargots, as in plural form.  

Escargot is frequently translated as a land snail that can be either cooked and is consumed readily to eat (RTE).  

Escargots are generally served as a starter dish and are typically consumed in France and the Catalan region of Spain. Escargot in some instances also used for the living snails of those particular species which are mostly eaten in this same manner. 

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Escargot’s consumption pattern; Increased uptake in different countries  

In some cultures and countries, consumers can’t even imagine eating snails and putting them on their plates. Meanwhile, some people relish the delicacy and it is considered highly delectable to them. 

In several countries, eating snails or escargots is inculcated into their culture and eating practices and holds much of their history. 

The countries which consume escargots the most are Spain, Italy, France, Australia, and the USA.  

whatsmind escargot serving

Maturation Time 

While assessing the maturity of escargot, we primarily appraise the opening of the lip on the escargot’s shell.  

The shell of the snail/escargot ruptures easily during growth due to magnesium deficiency, making the escargot undesirable. 

A specie of escargot, Helix aspersa when weighs around 8g or more, will be ready to be consumed.  

Nutrition Stats 

It contains abundant protein, but a rather low amount of fats, making it a healthier meal. It is approximated that Escargots contain 80% water, 32% protein, and 2% fat. 

Nutrients in Escargots

Escargot’s meat and shells are not the only things that are used for consumption purposes but their eggs are also hyped due to their delectability and high palatability among people. 

Snail eggs/caviar is regarded as highly beneficial and well-liked among consumers to its mild and earthy flavor.  

Preparation of Escargot 

There are several ways by which escargots can be cooked more specifically the way the gut microbiome of humans is evolving rapidly with time.  

In the past, people used to prepare snails by purging, killing, and removing the shells, afterwards those are cooked with garlic butter, chicken stock, or liquor (wine), again placed in the shells with butter and condiments, and then served.  

Modern chefs have innovated the recipes with varied ingredients including thyme, garlic, mint, parsley, and nuts.  

The delicacy can also be used in condiments, and salads and can be prepared as a complimentary dish or surprisingly a dessert.  

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Utensils utilized for preparation  

Particular tools are used while preparing escargots, an escargot pan is the most typical one used for this purpose. But in case, a person doesn’t have that, no worries, a mini muffin tin is one go-to option.  

Few other utensils are being utilized, most commonly;  

  1. Food processor/ Blender  
  1. Pastry Brush  
  1. Baking Sheet 
  1. Small pan 

Few Handy Tips  

  • Choosing canned snails is an excellent option as it elucidated high-quality snails, besides that, one convenient appetizer.  
  • Canned snails are selected by restaurants in the U.S as they taste delicious. 
  • Stuffing canned snails into empty shells gives off appetizing look.  
  • Don’t forget to wear an apron and oven mitts/gloves while dealing with cooked escargots as hot butter could ooze out. 
  • Spreading garlic butter over a baguette is perfect, but the normal butter tastes more flavorful. 

History of traditional French Recipe 

In roughly around 1814, the contemporary recipe of escargot came into existence. It was once a time when Napoleon’s steward, named Tallyrand, was seeing Tsar Alexander I, to have lunch. 

When the men arrived at the restaurants, that was almost closing time so only the snails were left that the cook could serve to his royal customers.  

So the chef improvised the dish by adding parsley and garlic to enhance the taste and to make that look presentable. Surprisingly, the men loved the taste and it made the delicacy popular globally but more specifically in France.  

As per recent reports, escargots/ snails are largely being consumed in France which consumes approximately around 16,000 tons of snails each year.  

Although the uptake got higher during Christmas they are consumed throughout the year as a flavorsome appetizer.  

Recipe’s Significance 

  • An exclusive appetizer: It is widely consumed in France in contrary to other countries. This delicacy will get you out of your typical taste buds and prove to you how eating flavorful could be a pure bounty.  
  • Simplicity: This dish is as simple as making a blend of garlic butter, assembling butter and snails, and finally baking. It seems quite tedious but in reality, it took a few minutes of steady work.  
  • A tour to ‘France’: If you ever wanna have a kick of French taste, try this scrumptious recipe. You will be hooked forever to this exotic cuisine.    

Requisites before Preparation  

Ingredients 

  • Snails: Canned snails are preferred as they are already cooked and it will just add a bunch of flavor by cooking it further.  
  • Butter: Unsalted (An excellent choice) 
  • White wine or chicken stock: (Chardonnay in case of wine as it’s complimentary to escargot) 
  • Breadcrumbs: Unflavored, Ready-made, finely ground 
  • Vegetables: Shallot (A variety of onions), Garlic, and parsley  

Procedure 

1: Escargot preparation  

Thaw one tablespoon of butter in an escargot pan, add shallot, and sautéed, until they dulcified. Add snails at the end for 2 minutes.   

Step 2: Preparing garlic butter 

The ingredients including butter, garlic, parsley & Chardonnay, or chicken stock are blended (at pulsed mode) to prepare garlic butter.  

Step 3: Cooking Escargot 

Each snail is filled into an escargot shell with half a teaspoon of garlic butter and then sprinkled with breadcrumbs.  

We will bake at 375⁰C for 10-15 minutes until a brownish hue starts to appear.  

Step 4: Preparing Baguette  

The baguette is cut into slices of about ¼ inches in thickness. 

The pieces of bread are splayed onto a cookie sheet, and then melted butter is brushed atop of bread.  

After putting out the snails, put that cookie sheet with bread into the oven and keep the oven door slightly ajar, and toast the bread.  

Toasted bread is served with cooked Escargot.  

FAQs on Escargot  

What are escargots? 

These are the cooked snails, a popular French dish consumed all over the world, largely in France.  

Is Escargot a French dish? 

Yes, a widely consumed French dish.  

How escargot is pronounced? 

It is pronounced as ‘uh-skaa-gow’.  

How escargot taste like? 

It tastes like chicken or fish, with a little bit of earthy taste. 

Does escargot cause any disease? 

As snails feed on soil, the content inside their digestive system must be purged out and then must be cooked, otherwise, they can cause harm to the consumers. 

Why does escargot shell rupture? 

Rupturing occurs due to magnesium deficiency. 

Is escargot a type of fish? 

No, it’s seafood and may taste like fish, but it’s not a type of fish.  

How the escargot and snail are distinguished? 

Snail is escargot in the French language. 

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