No Ortolans Were Hurt During the Making of This Film

“The Taste of Things,” a French food film, will be shown in theaters this week in order to qualify for the Oscars and to make you really, really hungry. The 145-minute film by Tran An Hung, starring Juliette Binoche and Benoit Magimel, is based on the 1920 novel “The Life and Passion of Dodin-Bouffant, Gourmet” by Marcel Rouff, inspired by the French gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, who gave his name to a cheese and a cake. The film is set at a modest château in the Loire region, the centerpiece of which is the robust kitchen where Dodin-Bouffant and his cook, Eugénie, prepare sumptuous meal after meal for Dodin’s small coterie of gourmands, as their own love story gently simmers. The pièce de résistance is a classic pot-au-feu. The chef Pierre Gagnaire was the consultant for the cooking, and in an interview in New York he said “everything is real; there was no faking.” (Not quite: There was backup gas fuel for the wood-burning stove, and small quail stood in for ortolans, a delicacy that is illegal.) He said the stars knew how to cook and “jumped right in.” Ms. Binoche told me that the food “haute cuisine but not pretentious.”From Dec. 13 through 20, there will be a menu at Frenchette, in TriBeCa, with three dishes from “The Taste of Things”: a ballotine of duck, pot-au-feu and baked Alaska ($90 or à la carte).

“The Taste of Things,” in theaters in New York (Dec. 13-20) and Los Angeles (Dec. 15-21), with a general release Feb. 14.

Order a Magnum, Sans Alcohol

There’s no better indication of the acceptance of drinks without alcohol than a booze-free magnum (1.5 liters). Kolonne Null Cuvée Blanc, a celebration-worthy sparkler, is a blend of pinot gris, pinot blanc and chardonnay from Germany for a balanced quaff with nice minerality, fizz and a pleasantly soft touch on the finish. The impressive bottle adds to its luster, especially for a holiday gathering or gift.

Kolonne Null Cuvée Blanc Sparkling Magnum, $58,

For Your Christmas Stocking

Credit…Neil Patrick Harris

Tuck the flavor of summer into that colorful stocking with a jar of “Merry Winter” Cherry Preserves. The tart-sweet jam made with New York State sour cherries, an ephemeral crop, is seasoned with toasted mulling spices in a recipe from the actors and couple David Burtka and Neil Patrick Harris, who own Funhouse Farm in East Hampton; the jam is cooked up by Beth’s Farm Kitchen, in Old Chatham, N.Y. Half the $12 price goes to City Harvest, the hunger relief organization that Mr. Harris and Burtka support. It’s available through Jan. 15.

Jam Sessions “Merry Winter” Cherry Preserves, $12 for 7.2 ounces,

Two Stollens for the Holiday Season

Credit…Christopher Testani for The New York Times. Food Stylist: Simon Andrews.

This year, a number of chefs are turning to stollen, another of those Christmas specialties like fruitcake and panettone which give dried fruit a workout. Masaki Takahashi, the executive pastry chef at Restaurant Yuu in Greenpoint, bakes a large cardamom-scented stollen, with a mosaic of rum-soaked dried fruit and nuts. A lover of history, he said he enjoys delving into traditions that are not just Japanese. The Austrian-born chef Markus Glocker’s stollen, from the kitchen of Koloman, is moist and rich like many being made today, and has an interior nugget of marzipan among the fruits and nuts that he said is typically German. He’s making two sizes and also selling portions. Stollen is a keeper that’s excellent a week or two after it’s baked.

Restaurant Yuu stollen, $45 large, to order for pickup, Tuesdays through Saturdays 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.,; Koloman stollen, $35 small, $68 large, $12 slice, to order for pickup Thursdays through Sundays 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.,

Pop a Spanish Tortilla in the Microwave

Credit…via La Tienda

They’ve shrunk the Spanish tortilla. The thick frittata of potatoes and onions, a tapas bar staple typically made for multiple servings now comes in minis from Peregrino by La Tienda, in Spain. Each is about four inches wide, making for an easy side dish alongside roasted meat or poultry, as the centerpiece on an individual vegetarian plate, or for a quick breakfast. Cut them in small wedges to toothpick and serve with drinks. The tortillas are four to a box, frozen and individually wrapped, to be heated in minutes in a microwave, a pan or a regular oven.

Peregrino Mini Tortilla Española, $32 for eight,

A Box of Macarons (Recipes)

Credit…via Laduree

A gift that might disappoint? At first glance the elegant pale green box holding the new book, “Macarons: The Recipes,” from Ladurée, the Paris-based company known for the colorful filled cookies, looks like it might contain an assortment of them. In a way it does, with pictures and recipes, but nothing to eat. Still, a macaron lover and baker would appreciate and exploit what fills its pages. Chapters according to categories of the treats, like the Classics, and Winter Aromas, show and describe scores of varieties, when they were created and suggested servings. There are recipes for most of them. The book also comes with a fold-out poster showing 130 macarons.

“Macarons: The Recipes” by Ladurée. (Accart Books, $39.95),

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