Cooking is a feeling. Certainly for Chef du Cuisine Remco Jansen of Coperto Restobar in Zwolle. “I prepare all my dishes on intuition and want to show that in my dishes. When the weather outside gets chillier and rougher, the game season starts again and I want to convey the autumn feeling to my customers.”
Shorter days, cooler weather and fall leaves. It might be a cliché, but for Remco this is linked to the fall season and winter and therefore also to the game season. “The flavours in my dishes become deeper, more intense and warmer. That really is part of the game season to me.”
QUALITY OF THE MEAT
The definition of the game season is very broad. “Not all the game, can be seen as game, I think. Sometimes the game is bred and in my opinion that finding cannot be labeled as game.” Remco finds the origin of the meat extremely important and is linked to the quality of the meat and its flavour. “Deer and wild boars that come from the wild, those are quality products to me. In the Netherlands we do have these products, but unfortunately this meat is quite expensive. We therefore use game from other European countries. Beautiful products as well. “Remco has a special bond with game products and their origin. “I live close to the national park De Veluwe and there is of course a lot of wildlife around there. The game that we can use is unfortunately scarce and often expensive, but we have several collaborations that allow us to get the game from that region. Think of deer, hare, but also geese.”
GAME SEASON IS MORE THAN JUST MEAT
In addition to the meat, where the game season is known for, there are more products that make this season so typical. “What I like about cooking in this season is to accompany all other seasonal products. Think of mushrooms, parsnip and sprouts. At Coperto we work from the season to season and use these products if they are readily available.” By using game from the Netherlands or other European countries, Remco keeps the logistics lines short. “I’d rather not get products from far away. That is why I am so happy that I can get many products from care farm De Huppe, also during this season. We also cook according to availability. That also makes this season so interesting. You never know what you can get.”
EMOTION IN THE DISHES
Cooking is emotion for Remco and therefore his feeling plays an important role. “I don’t immediately follow the trends. Mostly because certain dishes raise certain expectations. Classic dishes are classic dishes for a reason. ”An example of such a ‘classic’ is the deer steak. “I appreciate this traditional dish so I keep as it is, with a modern touch,” Remco says with a smile. Modern dishes are also on the menu at Coperto. “One of those modern dishes is Mabre, a kind of terrine. This dish arouses the appreciation of our guests and fits within the game season. As a chef, I want to get rid of the usual paths and I choose to cook with feeling and emotion. That is my style.” The seasonal products are also widely used as a garnish.
MEAT IS MEAT
“At Coperto we prefer to use pieces of game that others do not use,” Remco explains. “By that I mean I love to use the not obvious used pieces of meat, but also the meat that is sometimes considered less beautiful or marked as difficult to use. I think that is wonderful to do.” In this way, Remco is very conscious of the use of products and no food is lost. “I think no waste and sustainability are very important.
Remco has some unique advice for the true game enthusiast. “If you are really a game lover, I recommend going to a specialist in this field, mostly to be found on the edge The Veluwe,” he says. “That does not alter the fact that we, here at Coperto, don’t make delicious dishes, but for a classic dish there are restaurants that can prepare them wonderfully. Eating and drinking next to the fireplace with a good piece of game, that is my autumn feeling.”