Ever since I had a heavenly appetizer of scrambled eggs with goat cheese and truffles at Highlands Bar & Grill a few years ago, I've had fantasies of a Frank Stitt brunch. After all, Stitt does wonderful things with eggs. There's the signature Parmesan Souffle at Bottega. Chez FonFon sometimes has a frisee salad topped with a poached egg. There's a recipe in his first cookbook I've made a few times for an asparagus gratin with quartered boiled eggs nestled in among the asparagus and mushrooms. All of these would make wonderful brunch dishes.
In fact, according to an article in Southern Living this past summer, last year, he started his own farm, which included 50 laying hens and a few roosters. In Thicket magazine, he writes, "From our Dominicker, Rhode Island Reds, Aracanas and Buff Orrington hens, we are collecting the most delicious eggs."
Then this weekend, we had two appetizers which further enhanced my Stitt breakfast fantasies. There was a lovely runny Coosa Valley farm egg served with mushrooms, lardons, a bit of frisee, atop creamy grits with redeye gravy.
Then there was seared fois gras served on a biscuit with a persimmon sauce. The biscuit was what my Dad used to call very "short" -- lots of shortening (or in this case, from the taste, probably lard), giving it a flaky texture somewhere between biscuit and pie crust. The persimmon sauce, with a couple of slices of the orange fruit, offered a slightly sweet contrast to the earthiness of the foie and the savory biscuit. (I'd never had persimmon before; my only encounters with the fruit being the squishy orange overripe ones that fell from a tree and littered the sidewalk on my way home from elementary school.) Really something a little different and very wonderful, and something else to add to my fantasy brunch.