For 5 years, our chef Jérémie Valdes and his team have been producing savoury creations in our kitchen ateliers in la rue de Sèvres for our “Cuisine” and “À Emporter” stands. From sauce dishes to seasonal salads and sandwiches, he meticulously produces an extensive range of over 80 products. Take a look behind the scenes of this exceptional stand at La Grande Épicerie de Paris.
How did you become a chef at La Grande Épicerie de Paris?
After my hospitality training, I worked at various Parisian hotels including Le Meurice and the Hôtel de Crillon, where I gained experience in the basics of haute cuisine. I then joined a large catering group. There, I learned about management and how to maximise a supply chain, essential skills that I still use on a daily basis when planning production for our dishes.
By spending some time at small bistros and restaurants in France and Spain, I also learned about using produce in its entirety and minimising waste.
Finally, in 2009, I joined La Grande Épicerie de Paris I began as an assistant before becoming Head Chef five years ago. Today, I play the role of a conductor. I work with different departments, such as Purchasing and Marketing to design ranges and test new recipes. I then assign different tasks within my team based on the skills and preferences of each member.
Which savoury creations do you make in the laboratories on rue de Sèvres on a daily basis?
Gastronomy spans several stands. It represents over 80 different products alone. Every day, we prepare the dishes, salads and sandwiches for the “Cuisine” and “À Emporter” stands. We also cook the shellfish found on the Poissonerie stand, as well as the garnishes for the rotisserie, and some savoury mixtures used in the bakery, such as Pissaladières.
From 6.00 a.m., we start to prepare the first sandwiches and compose the salads for the day which are available at lunchtime in our two stores as well as at La Petite Epicerie in Gare Saint-Lazare.
How did you design the selection?
The “Cuisine” and “À Emporter” stands essentially consist of dishes that we produce ourselves, in our kitchen laboratories on rue de Sèvres.
There are, of course, traditional French cuisine recipes, reinterpreted and adapted in line with feedback from our customers. Their favourite products, such as veal with morel mushrooms, delicate porcini mushroom tarts and seasonal salads, have become our must-haves in the selection. However, we try to be as innovative as possible, introducing new flavours to try on a daily basis. This development also incorporates new techniques in cooking such as that used for our lemon chicken dish. The lemon’s acidity enables the meat to cook while delicately flavouring the flesh. We then cook it at a low temperature to preserve all the tenderness.
As part of the Our Chefs campaign, lamb Capilotade is available on the Cuisine stand. Why did you choose this recipe?
Capilotade is a family recipe and a traditional dish from Averyron, where I’m from. It consists of a grilled aubergine that is then stuffed with lamb shoulder confit and potatoes, all enhanced with a touch of tarragon. The stuffing is cooked for several hours the day before to ensure the meat is particularly tender on tasting. Once garnished, the aubergines are then brown in the oven with a little Laguiole cheese. This simple and flavoursome dish is perfect to counter the cold weather of winter!
Discover our Chef's savoury creations at the “Cuisine” and “À Emporter” stands in our stores.