Laurent Dagenais, star of TikTok, offers us 5 recipes from his first cookbook

TikTok star Laurent Dagenais offers us 5 recipes from his first book of kitchen

SET À DAY

Laurent Dagenais, social media phenomenon with 1.4 million TikTok subscribers, releases his first cookbook, Always hungry!< /strong>Through 70 recipes, the culinary content creator continues to share his passion for good things. 

In two years, many things have changed in the life of Laurent Dagenais. From a restaurant professional, he became a popular figure on TikTok during the pandemic thanks to his viral recipe videos. This week, he presents his first book to us.

“I think writing a book is the dream of any chef or restaurateur. But thanks to my social networks, it is now possible, he rejoices. It's another way to share my passion for cooking and make people want to cook. »

70 recipes

With Always hungry!, Laurent Dagenais therefore offers 70 unpretentious recipes, highlighting quality ingredients treated with respect, in addition to offering basic techniques well executed. 

When he started working on the book, spring was knocking at our doors. At the market, Laurent was inspired by local products such as wild garlic, mushrooms or even seafood. “I am happy to have used a lot of Quebec products for the recipes. For my videos as for the book, I try to respect the seasons. »

Essential recipes 

Among the 70 recipes, we therefore find “50 new recipes, inspired by what is available on the market, and 20 recipes already existing on my networks. social,” he explains. 

Two of these already existing recipes have enjoyed great popularity on his TikTok account, namely grilled Mediterranean octopus and rabbit with mustard. 

The recipe for rabbit with mustard is particularly close to his heart. “When I was 11, 12, my father took us to Provence, to Avignon, and we ate rabbit with mustard at the restaurant. It remains my favorite meal for life.

This recipe, which he describes as a “delicious classic”, he concocted in a bread oven in the forest. “It was a rustic experience! It caused a lot of reaction on social networks, both for good – it's a gourmet dish – and bad – the rabbit is seen as a pet in the United States. »

With this book, as with the videos, Laurent Dagenais hopes to inspire Quebecers in the kitchen and, who knows, encourage them to concoct a dish with rarer ingredients, such as rabbit or octopus! 

Laurent Dagenais, content creator… viral

It was during the pandemic that Laurent Dagenais, an experienced professional in the restaurant industry, became increasingly popular by producing culinary content for his social networks that went viral. A winning choice, which allows him to keep the passion and the desire to cook.

Not very interested in school and more inspired by action, Laurent Dagenais began to take an interest in cooking chatting with friends who were doing their cooking lessons. “After my cooking class, I read a lot of books, I watched a lot of shows to learn more and more, both about products and techniques,” he says. 

He trained in a French bistro in Montreal, then spent eight years in gourmet restaurants in Montreal and British Columbia. A wrist injury, following a fall while snowboarding, pushes him to take a break, then to work in a less upscale restaurant, where he loses his passion for being in the kitchen. He then turned to service and management in restaurant-bars. 

Videos on TikTok

At the start of the pandemic, he enjoyed some stability as a partner in a restaurant group that owned about 20 restaurants in the country. 

That's when- where his girlfriend, Amandine, offers to film him while he is busy concocting dishes. Previously, Laurent filmed himself and published his amateur videos. “With Amandine, we started making more complex videos, especially on TikTok,” explains Laurent. Within a year, these videos went viral.

Full-time

Since last December, Laurent Dagenais has been working 100% on creating culinary content for his social networks. An avenue that allowed him to show another side of his creativity. “I always liked to cook, but I no longer liked working in restaurants. The videos allowed me to keep the passion and the desire, but without having to experience the “less fun” part of the restaurants. It really is the best of both worlds for me. »

With 1.4 million subscribers on TikTok and videos viewed millions and millions of times (the most popular, that of tacos, has been viewed 27 million times), Laurent Dagenais inspires many people. And it's not over: he soon plans to launch in the longest format, on YouTube. To be continued.

Montecristo Sandwich

The first time I tasted this legendary sandwich was at a restaurant. The pig's foot, in the heart of the Plateau, in Montreal. I counted seven different meats, a divine blend of cheeses and too much syrup for one plate. This sandwich is the ultimate combination of sweet and savory! I reinterpret it here more simply (your liver will thank me!). 

Servings: 4 to 6 < strong>| Preparation: 20 mins | Cooking: 15 min 

Ingredients  

  • 1 loaf of white bread
  • 4 c. mayonnaise with old-fashioned mustard, divided
  • 1 cup finely grated Swiss cheese, divided + for serving
  • 1⁄ 3 cups finely grated Emmental cheese, divided
  • 15 oz white ham, divided
  • 5 oz old-fashioned ham, divided
  • 3 eggs
  • 1⁄2 cup whole milk
  • 5 tbsp. butter, divided
  • A good drizzle of maple syrup (real!)
  • Pepper from the mill 

Preparation 

  1. Using a bread knife or a very sharp chef's knife, carve the crust of the loaf on all sides. Shape the bread into a perfect rectangular shape. Cut the bread lengthwise into 3 equal slices.
  2. Spread three-quarters of the old-fashioned mustard mayonnaise on the 3 slices of bread.
  3. Assemble the sandwich: add half the cheese and ham on one slice. Cover with a second slice of bread, mayonnaise side down, and spread the top with the remaining mayonnaise. Add the rest of the cheese and ham and close the sandwich with the remaining slice of bread.
  4. Break the eggs into a rectangular dish large enough to hold the sandwich. Whisk until combined, then stir in the milk.
  5. Dip the sandwich in the egg-milk mixture on all sides for a few minutes to allow the bread to absorb the mixture.
  6.  In a non-stick skillet over medium heat, melt half the butter and toast the sandwich. Move the sandwich frequently so that it does not burn and to obtain a nice golden crust. When the butter turns brown, add more to cool the pan.
  7. When the bread is golden brown on all sides, place the sandwich on a cutting board. Cut into 4 or 6 slices and garnish with a generous amount of maple syrup. 

Cucumber gazpacho

The perfect recipe to start summer on the right foot! It can be served as is or add cucumber chunks, feta cheese and pickled red onions. 

Servings : 4 | Preparation: 15 mins | Refrigeration: 1 hour

Ingredients 

  • 8 Lebanese cucumbers, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 12 drops hot jalapeno sauce (green tabasco)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Olive oil, to taste

Toppings

  • 4 tbsp. sour cream
  • A few sprigs of dill 

Preparation 

  1. In a blender, blend the cucumbers, buttermilk, hot sauce, salt and pepper until smooth.
  2. Add the olive oil in a thin stream.
  3. Pass the gazpacho through a sieve and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  4. Serve very cold in iced bowls, garnished with a tablespoon of sour cream and a few sprigs of dill. 

Arancini tomato and mozzarella

Servings: 10 to 12 | Preparation: 40 mins | Cooking: 5 mins | Freezing: 20 min 

Ingredients  

  • 3 c. olive oil, divided
  • 1 French shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 cup carnaroli or arborio rice
  • 2⁄3 cup white wine
  • 4 cups vegetable broth, hot
  • 2⁄3 cup tomato sauce
  • 2⁄3 cup of grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 12 basil leaves
  • 12 mini bocconcini
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cups breadcrumbs
  • 8 cups frying oil (I use canola oil)
  • Salt, to taste 

Preparation 

  1. In a skillet over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sweat the shallot and garlic for 2 to 3 minutes or until the shallot is translucent. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Add the rice and pearl it for 4 to 5 minutes or until translucent.
  3. Pour in the wine and let reduce completely, stirring constantly.
  4. Add the hot vegetable broth, 250 ml (1 cup) at a time, letting it reduce until dry and stirring continuously between each addition.
  5. When the rice is al dente, add the tomato sauce, the parmesan, the butter, 1 tbsp. tablespoon olive oil, cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Mix well, transfer to a baking sheet and let cool.
  6. Using a spoon, scoop out some rice in the palm of your hand. Place a basil leaf and a mini bocconcini in the center, then wrap the rice around the filling and shape into a ball the size of a golf ball. Place on another baking sheet. Shape the other 11 risotto balls in the same way. Freeze for 20 minutes.
  7. To bread the risotto balls, prepare three bowls: one with the flour, the other with the beaten eggs and the last with the breadcrumbs. Dredge each ball in flour (shake to remove excess), then in beaten eggs and finally in breadcrumbs. Make sure the balls are well coated to prevent the cheese from dripping into the fryer. Preheat the oil in the fryer to 180°C (350°F).
  8. Gently place the balls in the oil and fry for 1 or 2 minutes or until tender. they are golden and crispy.
  9. Transfer to a platter, salt and serve immediately. 

Halibut with almond sauce

Servings: 2 | Preparation: 20 mins | Cooking: 15 min 

Ingredients  

  • 2 pieces of halibut with the skin of about 150 g (5 oz) each
  • 1⁄4 cup olive oil
  • 3 onions, 1⁄2 chopped onion thinly sliced, the rest roughly diced
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 3⁄4 cup butter, divided
  • < li dir="auto">1⁄4 cup water

  • 1⁄2 cup 35% cream
  • 4 tbsp. tbsp sliced ​​almonds
  • 1⁄2 bunch tarragon, coarsely chopped + for garnish
  • Salt and pepper, to taste&nbsp ;

Preparation 

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F).
  2. Place the halibut pieces on aluminum foil, salt and drizzle with olive oil. Cover with onion slices and sprigs of thyme and close in foil. Set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add the diced onions and 60 ml (1/4 cup) of water. Salt, pepper and mix. Cook covered for 3 minutes or until the onions are soft and the liquid has completely evaporated.
  4. In a blender, purée the onions, then stir in the cream.
  5.  Put the halibut in the oven and cook for 12 minutes.
  6. While the fish is cooking, in a small pan, heat the remaining butter and toast the almonds. When the butter and almonds are well roasted (hazelnut), add the tarragon and remove from the heat.
  7. Remove the fish from the oven. Remove the skin (if it does not come off, the halibut is not cooked enough).
  8. Serve the fish with the onion puree and brown butter. Garnish with chopped tarragon. 

Flan Pie

This dessert, which was on the menu at my pop-up event at Bar St-Denis, in Montreal, was just too good not to be in my book.  

Servings: 4 to 6 | Preparation: 40 mins | Cooking: 1 hour 45 minutes | Freezing: 2 h 

Ingredients  

Pie crust

  • 1⁄2 cup butter
  • 1 1⁄4 cup flour + for the work surface
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1⁄4 cup cold water
  • Dried peas (for cooking batter)

Flan

  • 3⁄4 cup milk
  • 4/5 cup condensed “condensed” milk » sweet
  • 5 egg yolks

Toppings

  • Whipped cream
  • Dulce de leche 

Preparation 

  1. For the dough: in a bowl, sand the butter with the flour and a pinch of salt.
  2. Make a well in the center and pour very cold water into it. Mix with your hands.
  3. Stop as soon as a ball of dough is formed. Wrap in plastic wrap and let sit for at least 1 hour.
  4. On a lightly floured work surface, using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to about 5 mm (1/4 in) thick and line a 20 cm (8 in) pie pan.
  5. Let the dough rest in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F).
  7. Lay a sheet of parchment paper on the dough and add dried peas on top (to prevent it from swelling during cooking). Bake the dough for 30 minutes, then lower the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F), remove the paper and the dots and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  8. For the flan: in a saucepan, over medium heat, heat the milk and condensed milk, stirring so that they don't stick to the bottom. Place the egg yolks in a bowl. From the first broth of the milk mixture, pour over the egg yolks while whisking. Pass through a sieve and pour into the batter.
  9. Lower the oven to 160°C (325°F) and bake for 40 to 45 minutes. The flan should be set.
  10. Let cool. When ready to serve, garnish with whipped cream and dulce de leche.