Rognons d’Agneau à la Dijonnaise – Lamb’s kidneys in mustard sauce

By Peter Hanley

Rognons d’Agneau à la Dijonnaise – Lamb’s kidneys in mustard sauce

Today Pete’s Pans is not cooking on location, but still bringing you a classic and emblematic preparation from the city of Dijon in the East of France.

Dijon is capital of the region of Burgundy so well known for it’s wine, but also historically famous for the mustard that bears its name. These days most of the mustard is grown abroad thought it is still manufactured in the area and  legally protected under an appellation d’origine controlée.

When preparations are described as à la Dijonnaise, it usually indicates they are prepared with the local mustard. Todays classic preparation is one I was taught at culinary school and is a tremendous way to prepare kidneys: Rognons de d’agneau a la dijonnaise – Lamb’s kidneys in a mustard sauce.

INGREDIENTS (for two people)
6 or 7 lamb’s kidneys
2 tablespoons butter and one of vegetable oil
a shallot, finely chopped
25 ml cognac
60 ml cream
150 ml reduced brown stock (demi-glace)
a tablespoon mustard (or to taste)
chopped parsley
salt and pepper

Start by removing the thin outer skins of the kidneys and then cutting them in half lengthways. An optional step is to soak them in cold water to which a glass of vinegar is added for 15 minutes to remove any odour they may give off -15 minutes or so. In any case, do rinse them under the tap and make sure to dry them off well before starting.

Melt a tablespoon of butter over a decent flame and add another tablespoon of oil. When the pan is extremely hot, just about smoking, the kidneys are dropped in and seared on both sides until nicely browned on the outside but still pink within. The kidneys are removed from the pan an transferred to paper towels to drain.

Wipe out  the pan with a paper towel and return it to a medium heat. Add a tablespoon of fresh butter and cook the chopped shallots, stirring frequently for several minutes until soft with no colour. Pour over a good splash of cognac, stirring to loosen any flavour on the bottom of the pan. Now the demi-glace is added, reduced somewhat and then the cream. This is cooked and stirred for ten minutes or so until reduced to a sauce-like  consistency. Remove the pan from the heat and add the mustard. Season with salt and pepper and return the pan to a low heat.

Return the kidneys to the pan just to heat them through and coat with the mustard sauce.

The kidneys are placed in a warm serving platter and sprinkled with parsley before serving.

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