“To cook is to immerse ourselves in the cycle of life.” So says Will Horowitz, the executive chef and owner of Ducks Eatery in Manhattan. Ducks specializes in heritage techniques: culinary traditions passed down by cultures that existed prior to modern food preparation methods like refrigeration and appliances like ovens and microwaves. Instead of these, Ducks uses processes like dry aging and canning that follow the natural timeline of the seasons. In the colder months, meats and seafood are cured and often smoked, vegetables are fermented or cellared, and dairy is cultured and repurposed. In the warmer months, it’s time to restock supplies by growing, foraging, hunting, and harvesting. Nothing goes to waste.

Horowitz is a graduate of Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado (where he studied Tibetan Buddhism and environmental sustainability), and the Culinary School of the Rockies, also in Boulder. He first learned to cook from his grandparents, who were chefs on both his paternal and maternal side.

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left: wild cockles cured in chamomile, pickled currants, and country ham granita, by Horowitz. Photograph by Noah Fecks. Right: live diver scallop, smoked cultured cream, dehydrated melon, scallop bottarga, Paddlefish roe, and chili thread, by Horowitz. Photograph by Elk Studios.

An avid forager and fisherman, Horowitz finds his inspiration in nature: “It is a dance with a world much larger than our own where we can finally breathe, free to be mystified by the universe again. The leaves’ last bow to the rain; the river’s first shimmer of morning light . . . the art form of cooking is found within the expression of our bond with nature.”

Forest to Table,” a Tricycle Original Short

 

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