Ludo Lefebvre Recipes

Posted on Apr 25, 2014 10:45am

Chef Ludo Lefebvre shares his innovative French dishes featured on the show. Try them for yourself!



3 tablespoons unsalted butter

150 grams shallots, sliced

300 grams fennel, diced

30 grams garlic, sliced

¼ cup pernod

½ cup dry white wine, French Chablis

1 crème fraiche

3 tablespoons sherry vinegar

3 pound fresh mussels, debearded, scrubbed

2 bunches asparagus (about 1 ½ lb), trimmed, stalks, peeled

1 cup fresh elderflower

Melt butter in the pot.  Add shallots, fennel and garlic, stirring until softened.  Add the liquids and bring to a boil.  Add the mussels.  After the mussels have been steamed, add the asparagus.  

Dorade Ceviche

Serves 6


Ceviche Ingredients:

12 ounces boneless skinless dorade fillets, very thinly sliced

1 cup fresh lemon Juice

2 hothouse cucumbers, very coarsely chopped

3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon champagne vinegar

1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum

Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper


Pickled Onions Ingredients:

1 red onion, cut into 1/8-inch-thick rings

1/2 cup sherry vinegar



2 small jalapeño chiles, cut crosswise into very thin slices (about 48 slices)

2/3 cup (loosely packed) fresh cilantro leaves

1 cup (loosely packed) sprigs of purslane

12 borage flowers Fleur de sel


To prepare the ceviche:
Gently toss the dorade and lemon juice in a large bowl then set the mixture aside for 30 minutes, or until the fish is opaque. Drain the lemon juice and refrigerate the dorade until cold.

Blend the cucumbers in a high-powered blender until smooth. Strain the cucumber mixture in a fine-meshed sieve to extract the cucumber water; discard the solids. You should have about 2 cups of green cucumber water. Mix the cucumber water, balsamic vinegar, and champagne vinegar in a medium bowl to blend. Season the cucumber liquid to taste with salt and pepper, then whisk in the xanthan gum to thicken slightly. Refrigerate until cold.

To make the pickled onions:
Cook the red onions in a small saucepan for 30 second, then drain and quickly submerge the onions in a bowl of ice water until the onions are cold. Strain the onions then transfer them to a small bowl. Add the vinegar and marinate the onions for 1 hour. Strain the onions again, then cover and refrigerate.

To serve:
Arrange the fish slices over the bottom of 6 shallow soup plates. Spoon about 5 tablespoons of cucumber water over the fish on each plate, then scatter the pickled red onions (about 4 per plate) over the fish. Garnish with the jalapeño slices, cilantro leaves, purslane, and borage flowers. Season with a touch of fleur de sel and serve immediately.

Snapper Ceviche

Serves 4


Pickled Red Onions:

1 small red onion, cut into thin julienne strips

1 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup water

2 teaspoons granulated sugar

2 teaspoons kosher salt


Meyer Leom Agar Gel:

3/4 cup Meyer lemon juice, strained

1 1/2 tablespoons agar agar NEW RECIPE


Snapper Ceviche:

2 (7-ounce) sides boneless skinless snapper

1 cup fresh lime juice

1 heirloom tomato, cored, halved, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices

1 green jalapeno chile, sliced into paper-thin disks

1/2 cup (not packed) fresh cilantro leaves

8 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

20 cilantro flowers

Grey sel de Guérande


To make the pickled red onions:
Cook the onions in a medium saucepan of lightly salted water for 15 seconds. Drain and submerge the onions in a bowl of ice water just until cold. Drain the onions again and pat them dry with paper towels. Place the onions in a small non-reactive bowl and set aside.

Combine the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a heavy small saucepan and bring to a simmer over high heat, whisking to dissolve the sugar and salt. Immediately pour the pickling juice over the onions in the bowl and set aside until cool. Cover and refrigerate until the mixture is very cold.  When the red onions look very pink from the pickle juice they are thoroughly pickled.


To make the Meyer lemon agar gel:
Combine the lemon juice and agar in a heavy small saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, whisking to dissolve the agar, about 3 minutes. Continue to boil, whisking constantly, to be sure the agar is fully dissolved, about 1 minute. Pour the mixture into a container and set aside until cool. Cover and refrigerate until the lemon gel cold and set. Before serving, whisk the lemon gel until smooth. 

To make the ceviche:
Cut the fish on a bias into 1/8-inch-thin slices.  Lay the fish slices in a non-reactive container and pour enough of the lime juice over the fish to cover completely. Refrigerate for 25 minutes, or until the fish is opaque. Remove the fish from the lime juice and lay the slices on a small baking sheet, then cover the fish with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve it.

To serve:
Lay the fish and tomatoes slices in 4 wide shallow soup plates. Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of the pickled red onions over each serving, then lay the jalapeno slices and cilantro leaves on top. Drizzle the olive oil over then garnish with the cilantro flowers. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the lemon gel on the edge of each plate. Sprinkle the grey sel over the ceviche and serve immediately.

Tequila Baba, Aloe Vera, Chantilly

Serves 8



Nonstick cooking spray

2 tablespoons warm whole milk (105°F to 110°F)

2 teaspoons active dry yeast

3/4 cup all purpose flour

2 teaspoons granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon fine-grained sea salt

1 large egg

1/4 cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature


Tequila syrup:

2 cups water

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

1/2 cup Añejo tequila


Aloe Vera Gelée:

1 cup aloe vera juice

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons filtered water

4 gelatin sheets



1/4 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup Pastry Cream (see recipe)


Salted Chantilly:

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel


Babas Directions:
Position the rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375°F. Set eight 1 1/2-ounce savarin molds (each about 3-inches in diameter) on a baking sheet and spray the molds with nonstick cooking spray. Stir the warm milk and the yeast in a small bowl to blend. Let stand until the yeast dissolves, about 10 minutes. Using an electric mixer, mix the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl to blend. Add the yeast mixture and egg. Stir to blend well. Gradually beat in the butter. The dough will be very sticky, like a cross between a dough and a batter. Transfer the dough to a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip and pipe the dough into the prepared savarin molds, dividing equally. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm draft-free area until the dough doubles in volume, about 30 minutes. Uncover the molds, transfer the pan to the oven, and bake until the babas are golden brown and a skewer inserted near the center of a baba comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Invert the babas onto a cooling rack. Remove the molds and cool the babas completely.

Syrup Directions:
Combine the 2 cups of water and the sugar in a large wide saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add the tequila and return the syrup to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat. Working in batches, submerge the babas in the hot syrup just until soaked through, about 45 seconds per side. Using a wide slotted spoon, transfer the babas to a cooling rack set over a baking sheet to drain. Cool completely.

Aloe Vera Gelée Directions:
Soak the gelatin in a bowl of cold water until it softens, about 5 minutes.

Combine the aloe vera, water, and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring with a whisk to dissolve the sugar. Remove the softened gelatin from the water and whisk it into the aloe mixture until the gelatin dissolves. Transfer the gelée to a 6x4x1-inch baking dish or any other small container to form a 1/2-inch-thick layer of the gelée. Refrigerate until cold and set. Cut the gelée into 3/4-inch cubes.

Cream and Chantilly Directions:
Beat the 1/4 cup of whipping cream in a large bowl until thick and fluffy. Fold in the pastry cream. Set the cream mixture aside.
Beat the 1/2 cup of whipping cream and fleur de sel in a medium bowl until thick and creamy.


Pastry Cream:

Makes about 2 cups



2 cups whole milk

1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise

1/2 cup granulated sugar

6 large egg yolks

1/4 cup cornstarch

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Place the milk in a heavy small saucepan. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and add them to the milk along with the bean. Bring the milk to a simmer. Meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the sugar and egg yolks in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Mix in the cornstarch. Gradually mix in the hot milk mixture. Return the mixture to the saucepan. Stir with a whisk over medium-low heat until the pastry cream thickens and bubbles begin to break on the surface of the cream, about 8 minutes. Remove from the heat. Remove the vanilla bean from the pastry cream and whisk in the butter. Transfer the pastry cream to a small bowl and press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pastry cream. Refrigerate until cold, at least 3 hours and up to 2 days. 

To Assemble and Serve:
Place 1 baba in the center of each of 8 plates. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the pastry cream mixture into the center of each baba. Arrange 3 cubes of aloe vera gelée around each baba. Spoon the chantilly on the edge of the plates and serve immediately.

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