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It was inevitable that a PBS series about the nationwide farm-to-table trend would make its way to Sonoma County.

When the producers of "Moveable Feast with Fine Cooking" contacted Duskie Estes of Zazu Kitchen + Farm in Sebastopol about filming one of the 13 episodes here, the chef jumped in with both cowgirl boots.

"I'm pretty relaxed in front of the camera," said Estes, who starred on the Food Network's "The Next Iron Chef" in seasons three and five. "I'm going to do the 'Julia Child' moment, where I put it in the stove, and 'Voila!'"

Hosted by Australian chef Pete Evans, the series takes viewers on a culinary journey with some of the top chefs in the country, including Tom Douglas of Seattle, and Marcus Samuelsson and Jonathan Waxman, both based in New York.

"Our chefs have the opportunity to experiment outside the confines of their regular kitchens, in fresh territory, where they can collaborate and stretch their cooking muscles," said Laurie Donnelly, executive producer. "This inspiring new series is the culinary equivalent of a jam session."

The series, produced by WGBH-TV and Fine Cooking magazine, will launch in San Francisco at 8:30 a.m. Sept. 14 on KQED Channel 9. The Sonoma County episode is scheduled to air on Nov. 23.

During each episode, Evans follows the local chefs back to the source for ingredients. Then they join forces — working under the gun, just like home chefs throwing a dinner party — to prepare a multi-course "pop-up" dinner.

As her partner in crime, Estes chose restaurateur Mark Stark, who owns five restaurants in Sonoma County.

"It's hard not to do farm-to-table cooking in Sonoma County," Stark said.

On July 31, the film crew captured Stark and Estes as they cooked for friends and family at the Davis Family Winery in Healdsburg.

"This winery speaks Sonoma County," Estes said. "You've got it in the glass, the produce is growing here, and the river is over there, which creates the climate."

Earlier in the day, the chefs led Evans on a visit to two local farms to pick up a few iconic products that are synonymous with Sonoma.

Early in the morning, Estes led the crew to Redwood Hill Farm in Sebastopol, where they filmed the goats being milked and picked up some fresh goat cheese for the chef's gnocchi dish.

"The goat cheese for the gnocchi is crazy, creamy and smooth," Estes said. "The gnocchi that we make just adds eggs and flour, and it's like a goat cheese pillow."

To serve with the gnocchi, Estes braised pork and beef short ribs in red wine, stock, herbs and spices, creating a hearty Short Rib "Zasugo."

At mid-morning, Stark met the crew at Salmon Creek Ranch in Bodega Bay to talk birds.

"We explored the farm and talked to the ducks and goats and cattle and geese," Stark said. "I love duck, so we picked up duck legs and eggs."

Poultry has been traditionally raised in Sonoma County because the aninals thrive near the cool, breezy coast.

"Duck is readily available here, more than cattle or pork," Stark said. "It can't be too hot; it was 57 degrees out there today."

Stark, an east-coaster with a deep passion for barbecue, seared the duck legs, sweated some onions, then braised the duck in a homemade barbecue sauce. He served them over smoked cheddar polenta.

"These dishes create a perfect marriage of the Tuscan feel and my redneck upbringing," he said. "It's 'The Redneck Goes to Italy.'"

As a side dish, Stark gave an Italian twist to the barbecue side of coleslaw by making a Tuscan kale salad studded with Parmesan, fennel and radishes.

For dessert, Stark made a mouth-watering clafoutis with the duck eggs. But instead of the traditional cherries, he used local peaches from Dry Creek Peach and Produce in Healdsburg and berries from the Russian River Raspberry Farm in Santa Rosa.

During the prep, the chefs were able to jam together, improvising on some of their finishing touches.

On a whim, Estes borrowed some of Stark's smoked paprika spice mix to finish her first course: Pan-Blistered Padron Peppers with Sherry Vinegar, Marcona Almonds and Bohemian Creamery Capriago Cheese.

Then she snagged a few of his duck eggs to enrich her gnocchi with the rich yolks.

"It was like improv in the kitchen," she said. "And I guess you could say I stole most of his stuff."

The following two recipes are from Duskie Estes. The gnocchi will keep for a day in the refrigerator after they are formed.

Redwood Hill Goat Cheese Gnocchi

Makes 4 servings

1 pound Redwood Hill Goat Cheese

2 farm eggs

3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all purpose flour

— Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

In an electric mixer on medium speed, combine the goat cheese, eggs, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Once combined, add the flour and stir until just combined. Remove from the bowl onto a work surface sprinkled with flour. Flatten the dough with your hands to 1-inch thick. With a bench knife, cut 1-inch thick strips, roll each strip to round the edges, and cut into gnocchis about 1-inch long. Press onto a gnocchi paddle (or a fork) to make grooves. Store on a baking sheet sprinkled with flour.

Drop the gnocchi in boiling salted water a minute beyond when it floats, about 3 minutes. Toss in sugo with just-picked arugula. Plate in shallow bowls, placing the arugula on top and garnishing with freshly-grated parmesan cheese.

Short Rib 'Zasugo'

Makes 30 servings

1/2 cup pure olive oil

5 pounds bone-in beef short ribs

5 pounds bone-in pork shoulder

2 quarts peeled, diced carrot

2 quarts diced celery

3 quarts diced yellow onion

3 large (#10) cans tomatoes

1 bottle red wine

21/2 quarts chicken stock

1 bunch oregano

1 tablespoon Calabrian chili oil

1 teaspoon chili flakes

12 cloves garlic, peeled

4 bay leaves

— Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 pounds unsalted butter

— Arugula, for garnish

— Extra virgin olive oil, for garnish

— Parmesan cheese, for garnish

Season the meat generously with salt. Sear meat on high heat with oil until browned on all sides. Set meat aside. Then brown the carrots, celery and onion in the same pan. Add meat back in and pour in wine and let simmer 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, stock, herbs, spices and water to halfway up the meat. Cover with foil and roast in 350-degree oven until meat is tender, about 3-plus hours. Remove bones and shred meat. Before serving, whisk in cold butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve: Toss goat cheese gnocchi into sauce. Top with arugula tossed with extra virgin olive oil and then sprinkle with Parmesan.

This recipe is from Mark Stark. It was inspired by his friend, pastry chef Jenny Malicki of Spinster Sisters in Santa Rosa. This dessert is best eaten slightly warm.

Russian River River Raspberry & Peach Clafoutis

Makes 6 servings

1 vanilla bean

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 duck eggs (or 3 chicken eggs)

3/4 cup sugar

6 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup cr?e fraiche

3/4 cup coconut milk

1 ripe peach

1 pint fresh raspberries

— Powdered sugar

— Toasted sliced almonds, to garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place eggs in a bowl and whisk until light and fluffy. Split and scrape seeds out of the vanilla bean, add paste to eggs.

Add the almond extract, sugar, flour, cr?e fraiche and the coconut milk. Mix just until smooth. Let the batter rest for 15 minutes.

Brush a 9-inch gratin dish with melted butter and dust with a little granulated sugar. Shake out any excess sugar.

Slice a ripe peach into 2-inch, bite-size pieces and distribute in the dish. Scatter the raspberries evenly over the dish as well.

Slowly pour in the batter, making sure the peaches and raspberries stay evenly distributed. Place the clafoutis into the oven and bake until golden brown and the custard is just set, about 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove and let cool slightly. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and dust with powdered sugar.

You can reach Staff Writer Diane Peterson at 521-5287 or diane.peterson@pressdemocrat.com.

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