Ants on a Log Recipe

Sep 11, 2011 12:01 pm

Bone marrow and snails for an after-school snack?

Disclaimer: Making this dish as an after-school snack may earn you praise and admiration from the other dads, but your kid will most likely hate you.

That said, David Burke, American chef, restaurateur and cookbook author has really done it this time. Critically acclaimed for his whimsically inventive, yet clean and honest modern American cuisine such as lobster steak and pastrami salmon, Burke transforms the best ingredients available into standout dishes at all seven of his restaurants.

His take on "ants on a log," a favorite childhood snack, replaces celery with a marrow bone, peanut butter with parsley butter and ants with none other than tender, succulent escargot. Even though we've left out Burke's elaborate garnish of fragrant scorched "fennel hay," pickled wild Asian mushrooms and fried garlic chips, we don't expect you to get it right the first time. Or try it in the first place, really, it's an ambitious endeavor. But it looks so cool (and tastes so incredible) we thought we'd throw it out there. 

David Burke's Ants on a Log
Photo: Jeff Fried
Two classic French appetizers, escargot and bone marrow toast, combine forces in this standout dish from David Burke Kitchen.
Servings: 2


1 teaspoon pernod
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
1 cup butter
1 large bunch parsley, stems removed
2 6-inch marrow bones, sliced in half lengthwise
4 snails
4 diagonal slices of baguette, toasted
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons chicken stock
  1. In a stand mixer, combine Pernod, garlic, fennel seeds and butter until smooth. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate.
  2. Blanch parsley in salted boiling water for about a minute, then cool in an ice bath, puree in a blender or food processor until smooth and set aside.
  3. Preheat a baking sheet in a 375 degree oven. Place marrow bones face down on the sheet and cook for 4 minutes.
  4. Cook snails in a small pan over medium high heat with the chicken stock, lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of fennel butter until just warmed through, 2-3 minutes, then add 3 tablespoons of parsley puree. 
  5. Spread baguette slices liberally with fennel butter.
  6. Top each marrow bone with 2 snails, 2 baguette slices and half the sauce.



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