Story by Becky Speere | Photos by Mieko Horikoshi
On a late autumn day, I found myself leafing through my travel journal from December 2019. It contained the daily entries of how and with whom we celebrated the holiday season in Guadalajara, Mexico. Amongst my notes was a handwritten recipe for pan de elote, a gift from Nancy Sandoval, pastry chef at NH Collection Hotel in the Centro Historico district. As my eyes slid down the ingredients list, I could almost taste the moist, buttery corn cake.
This treasured food memory sparked my curiosity: What are Maui chefs’ favorite holiday dishes? Our usual Holiday Test Kitchen brings MNKO’s staff together under the guidance of a local chef to create a feast, but social distancing would be impossible in 2020. So we opted, instead, to pile on the goodies with holiday dishes from not one, or two, but four chefs! Mahalo to Eric Faivre, executive chef of Montage Kapalua Bay; Marc McDowell, chef-owner of SixtyTwo MarcKet; Keith Apana, chef-owner of Only Ono BBQ; and Jessica Kapoor, chef-owner of Sweet On Maui. Grab your journal.
An aspiring sourdough-bread baker and jam maker, Executive Chef Eric Faivre says, “My mother, Francoise, makes the best baeckeoffe [terrine] in the entire region of Grand Est.” Hearing this, I know the recipe needs to be part of our holiday test-kitchen lineup.
Eric adds that baeckeoffe also translates as “the baker’s oven.”
French housewives of days gone by brought the ceramic vessel— chockfull of marinated meats and vegetables—to place in the sole oven in the heart of the village before heading off to the fields to work. Baeckeoffe is also traditional to the Alsatian pottery created near Eric’s hometown of Ribeauvill.. Although the region was once known for its pottery, only two towns continue the tradition: Soufflenheim and Betschdorf. Eric says, “Each piece is hand-painted and [the differences] in d.cor are what make the pottery so attractive!” He adds, “The thickness of the pottery, made from clay extracted from quarries at the nearby town of Haguenau, provides the perfect environment for long, slow, and gentle heat.”
The final step in the dish, a flour-and-water seal, ensures maximum moisture retention. It can be prepared the night before Christmas and baked while you relax with the family, open presents, or rejuvenate while taking a walk—or if, as Eric remembers doing, you are in Alsace, bundled in warm clothing for long walks in the frozen vineyards. Bon appetit! Joyeuses fetes! Happy holidays!
Recipe for Baeckeoffe à la Maman Françoise
Montage at Kapalua Bay
Servings: 8 | Prep time: 45 minutes | Marinate: 24 hours | Assembly: 20 minutes | Baking: 3 hours
- 1.2 lb. pork shoulder
- 1.2 lb. beef chuck roast
- 1.2 lb. lamb shoulder
- 2 pig’s feet, or 16 oz. skin-on pork belly
- 2 large leeks
- 1 large carrot
- 4 1/2 lb. russet potatoes
- 1 large onion
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 juniper berries
- 1 1/2 c. Kula White Blend from MauiWine
- 1 1/2 oz. kosher salt
- 1/8 oz. black pepper, ground
- FOR THE DOUGH SEAL:
- 14 oz. all-purpose flour
- 9 oz. water
Cut the pork, beef and lamb into 2” cubes. Cut the pig’s feet in half. Cut the leeks lengthwise and then crosswise into 1” slices. Wash the leeks under running water to remove all sand and silt. Drain well. Peel the carrot and slice into .” pieces. Cut garlic cloves in half. Combine the meats, wine, leeks, carrot, garlic, bay leaf, and juniper berries in a large bowl and toss well to mix. (The liquids and herbs will form the marinade.) Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.
About 4 hours before serving, peel the potatoes and thinly slice crosswise. Peel the onion and slice crosswise into thick half-inch wide pieces. Season the potatoes and onions with salt and pepper.
ASSEMBLY: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a ceramic baeckeoffe or heavy-sided pot (Le Creuset will work), layer 1/3 of the potato mixture. Place half the meat atop the potatoes, spreading evenly. Top the meat with 1/3 of the potato mixture, distributing evenly, then pour the marinade of meat juices and wine, and top with the rest of the meat, spreading to the edges of the terrine. Top evenly with the final layer of potato mixture. Prepare the dough seal by mixing the flour and water until it is homogenous. Roll the dough into a thick rope and encircle the rim of the baking dish. Place the lid on the baeckeoffe, creating a tight seal, and bake in preheated oven. Enjoy!