Maple Leaf Farms Duck: Your Nutritious and Sustainable Recipe for Success

By | Appetizers, Farm To Table, Meats, What Chefs Want

In the dynamic world of dining, one protein source is emerging as a star for its exceptional taste, versatility, and eco-friendly ethos. Allow us to introduce you to Maple Leaf Farms—the farm that’s revolutionizing how chefs and food enthusiasts perceive duck meat.

A Nutritional Marvel Awaits: The White Pekin Duck

Before we delve into the legacy and sustainable practices of Maple Leaf Farms, let’s uncover the nutritional treasure that is White Pekin Duck. Beyond its deliciousness, this duck variety boasts a commendable nutritional profile that’s catching the attention of chefs and foodies worldwide.

The White Pekin duck is a protein source that not only dazzles your palate but also supports your health goals. This duck variety has lower fat and calorie content compared to many other meats, making it a winning pick for those who crave incredible flavors while upholding a balanced diet.

A skinless duck breast weighs in at a mere 110 calories per 4 oz. serving, accompanied by a paltry 2 grams of total fat. Compare this to the leanest chicken breast, and duck claims the victory in the realm of lean meats.

Duck fat isn’t just a culinary secret; it’s a nutritional revelation. Bursting with monounsaturated fats, akin to revered olive oil, duck fat is a wonder in the world of healthy fats. Its saturated fat content is notably low, especially considering that much of it resides in the skin—which can be conveniently rendered off or removed before cooking, putting you in charge of your dish’s fat content.
And this duck isn’t just about less fat; it’s about more goodness. This variety is a treasure trove of essential nutrients, boasting impressive quantities of iron and selenium—crucial elements that bolster your well-being.

Duck’s Culinary Identity: Red Meat with a Twist

Contrary to its poultry companions like chicken and turkey, duck strides into the realm of red meat, ushering in a diverse flavor profile akin to steak. This distinction lends duck a versatile culinary nature that shines in everything from elegant soirées to casual gatherings—a must-have ingredient for chefs aiming to elevate their creations.

Cooking duck is an art that marries precision with passion. Unlike traditional white meats, a skillfully prepared duck breast delights with a slight pink center when cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This artistry doesn’t just ensure tenderness; it enriches the distinctive flavor profile duck is celebrated for.

In a world where flavor often collides with wellness, White Pekin duck bridges the gap. Its delectable taste, partnered with its stellar nutritional qualities, makes it a prime choice for health-conscious chefs and food enthusiasts alike.

Maple Leaf Farm Makes Duck Approachable

Maple Leaf Farms is on a mission to make duck a staple in every kitchen. From gourmet sit-down meals to approachable, shareable dishes, there’s a place for duck in every type of restaurant. Imagine duck tacos that tantalize the taste buds or savory appetizers like duck bacon wontons and crispy duck wings—these are just the beginning of your culinary journey.

For those curious but hesitant, Maple Leaf Farms offers recipes and inspiration on their website, guiding chefs of all levels to create delectable duck dishes that will have diners coming back for more.

A Legacy of Excellence and Sustainability

While the spotlight on White Pekin duck’s nutritional wonders shines bright, let’s shift our focus to the legacy that is Maple Leaf Farms—a story of passion, dedication, and an unwavering commitment to delivering unparalleled duck products.

Maple Leaf Farms’ journey begins with a dedication to sustainability. Partnering with local farmers and raising ducks in open-air barns at a comfortable temperature, their approach guarantees consistent, top-tier meat—a chef’s dream come true. With innovative barn designs that effectively manage waste and eco-friendly practices like repurposing manure for local fields, sustainability takes center stage.

No Waste, Just Excellence

Maple Leaf Farms’ commitment to sustainability echoes through every step, from processing ducks themselves to ensuring each part serves a purpose. No element is overlooked—even feathers find their place, transformed into pillows and comforters, showcasing a zero-waste mindset that’s both responsible and innovative.

A Global Impact with Local Roots

Maple Leaf Farms’ global presence retains a heartwarming small-town feel. From a modest 1958 Indiana duck operation, it has evolved into an international powerhouse, exporting to various corners of the world. This journey is a testament to their dedication to excellence, rooted in founder Donald Wentzel’s vision and carried forward through generations.

Culinary Excellence Meets Sustainability: Your Journey Begins

So, are you ready to elevate your creations with Maple Leaf Farms Duck? We offer a variety of Maple Leaf Farms duck products, delivered right to your door. Search our website or app for Maple Leaf or search by item code:

  • Bone in duck leg & thigh – Item #00890
  • Ground duck – Item #00889
  • Duck leg confit – Item #00893
  • Duck breast – Item #00841
  • Whole duck – Item #00384

Anthonino’s Taverna: From Family Roots to Culinary Heights

By | Appetizers, Chef's Feed, Italian, Pizza, Produce, What Chefs Want

In the heart of St. Louis, MO, Anthonino’s Taverna stands as a testament to the dynamic fusion of Italian and Greek cuisines, owned by brothers Anthony and Rosario Scarato. Their culinary journey is rooted in family traditions, echoing through generations in their Italian and Greek heritage. With a legacy in the restaurant business and an innate passion for flavors, the Scarato brothers embarked on a culinary venture that has earned accolades for both the best Italian and Greek restaurant in town.

Join us as we explore their journey and applaud their achievements, powered by the use of fresh, local ingredients and their fearless attitude towards embracing new opportunities.

Can you share a bit about your culinary background and what led you to open a restaurant?

Anthony – Our family has been in the restaurant business our whole lives, so it surrounded us growing up. As we became adults and needed to make a career for ourselves, this was it!

Rosario – Our dad had restaurants at local food courts here in St. Louis and Anthony and I grew up doing that together. When we decided to open a restaurant in 2003, we found a perfect spot on The Hill and have been at it ever since then.

Anthony – When we started it was just a 1-page menu and three or four other employees besides ourselves and we’ve been growing ever since!

For non-St. Louis natives, The Hill is a distinctive neighborhood with roots tracing back to Italian immigrants from the 1800s. This vibrant and enduring community offers a charming “little Italy” ambiance, making it a must-visit destination that encapsulates the essence of Saint Louis, Missouri.

What inspired you to showcase both Italian and Greek cuisines at Anthonino’s Taverna?

Rosario – Our culture. We started with family recipes because we grew up on them, loved them and knew everyone would enjoy them.

Anthony – Our mother was born in Greece and Dad’s parents were born in Italy. There are lots of Italian restaurants on the Hill, and our recipes and the way we do things are different, but having Greek menu items as well really helps us stand.

How does sourcing your food from What Chefs Want impact the quality of your menu?

Rosario – We like to focus on local and What Chefs Want helps us get a good variety of produce. Using them, we can feel confident that we will get good and consistent year-round product.

Anthony – We choose to use What Chefs Want because we’ve found that we can get things that we can’t get from a lot of other purveyors. We have three awesome salads that we rely on their produce for, the House Salad, Caesar Salad and Italian Salad. We use shaved kale in the Caesar, a nice artisan blend of lettuce for the Italian, and chopped romaine for the house, all with homemade dressings.

“Using What Chefs Want really takes out a lot of the leg work for us because the lettuce is coming to us clean and ready to use.”

– Anthony Scarato

  • Find our Chopped Romaine – Item #20264
  • Find our Shredded Kale Greens – Item #98742
  • Find our Arcadian Mix Lettuce – Item #20248
  • Find our Cherry Heirloom Tomatoes – Item #50901

Talk to me about your favorite family recipe how you’ve used it in your menu?

Anthony – I’d say ravioli. Growing up our grandma and aunts would always make ravioli. They would make it the traditional way and boil it, but toasted ravioli is so popular here that we added it to our menu in that way.

Rosario – We’ve really perfected it. It’s all made with fresh ingredients.

And Anthonino’s HAS perfected Toasted Ravioli. They are handmade in house and filled with ground beef, ricotta and pecorino romano cheese, served with their own marinara. They’ve won awards for the Best Toasted Ravioli in St. Louis, sell them in the new CITYPARK soccer stadium, sell them frozen at local grocery Schnucks, and were featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives where Guy Fieri RAVED about them.

    Being featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is a fantastic achievement! Could you share your experience of being on the show and how it impacted your restaurant’s visibility and success?

    Anthony – It was pretty wild. When they first called us we thought it was a joke, but as we went through multiple phone calls and multiple interviews, each call sounded a little more serious! It’s the #1 show on The Food Network, so this was BIG. When they filmed the crew was really gracious and Guy was great.

    Rosario – Our taping was in May 2012 and in terms of our restaurant, we were still little guys, still growing. It was an extremely big deal for us. In 2014 we were able to get a bank on board to add onto our dining room, allowing us to double in size. I’m not saying that it is all because of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, but our exposure there played a big role.

    Anthony – After the show films, it doesn’t air for a couple months, but when it does, it reruns six times a year. It drives people to us even to this day and we’ve even had people from Europe who visited us after seeing us on the show.

    Tell me about finding your pizza and toasted ravioli in stores? How did that come about?

    Rosario – It started during Covid. We were looking for a way to keep the business going, a way to keep our people working. We were doing to-go orders and started just by selling frozen pizzas to the people who were there to pick up orders. We started jarring our sauce at the same time. We started a great relationship with Schnucks grocery store. They liked that our product was local, made with a focus on local products, and now our frozen pizzas are available in 115 of their stores! Our frozen ravioli, marinara and two salad dressings are also available in their stores.

    What would your advice be to chefs or restaurateurs who are looking to break out of the brick-and-mortar mold?

    Anthony – Do your research, but take a chance. If you have something that is unique and different, get out there and try it. Just take the chance.

    Item of the Day:  Bavarian Pretzels

    By | Appetizers, Asian, Asian Cuisine, Catering, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, What Chefs Want

    Bavarian Pretzel Sticks

    Oktoberfest begins Saturday, September 17th!

    Save time with this ready-to-go pretzel stick. Multiple heating options enable you to offer this artisan item with limited equipment. Perfect for an easy German-themed appetizer. These pretzel sticks are soft and sweet, with an earthy rye exterior. 

    7-7.5 Inches Long


    Coarse Salt Included


    Item 14604 – 72/2.4 oz Case 

    *Not available in all regions – see website or app for more information.

    Item of the Day:  Mini Lotus Buns

    By | Appetizers, Asian, Asian Cuisine, Catering, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, What Chefs Want

    Mini Bao/Lotus Buns

    Being a chef is hard. Let us help – these pre-made lotus buns are a delicious time saver.

    These Asian-inspired miniature steamed bun are perfect for sweet or savory applications.

    Fill with spicy chicken, pork belly – endless possibilities. Don’t forget the pickled carrots and mooli!


    Vegan, contains wheat and soy.

    0.8 oz per piece.

    Kabob Brand / MFG Code: K0909

    Great item for parties and catering!

    Item 90664 – 192 Ct Case 

    *Not available in all regions – see website or app for more information.

    Item of the Day:  Salmon Sashimi

    By | Appetizers, Catering, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, Japanese, Seafood, What Chefs Want

    Salmon Sashimi Kits

     The origins of Sashimi are shrouded in mystery but the art has been passed down for centuries. Now, with Wixter’s Salmon Sashimi Kit, you can join in this rich culinary tradition. With expertly sliced Norwegian Salmon (known as Sake in Japan), umami-packed soy sauce, and spicy wasabi, we’ve assembled the three ingredients that make up this simple but elegant dish. You can garnish it to your own tastes and delight guests at your next dinner party or begin your at home feast with the perfect bite.

    Three individually-sealed, 4 ounce portions of sliced frozen Norwegian Salmon Sashimi, plus three packets of soy sauce and wasabi for a whole meal solution.

    Great for retail or a ready-to-go item for parties and catering!

    Item 26406 – 20x12oz Packs (15lb Case)

    *Not available in all regions – see website or app for more information.

    Item of the Day:  Wixter Cooked Shrimp

    By | Appetizers, Catering, Charcuterie, Cheese, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, Seafood, What Chefs Want

    Wixter Cooked Norwegian Shrimp – Item 24152    


    Perfect for the upcoming catering season!

    Wixter’s succulent, white Shrimp are wild-caught and frozen at peak freshness. In fact, we are one of the few companies that do not add preservatives -including sulfites and phosphates – to its Shrimp. Providing 16 grams of protein per serving, as well as 30% of your daily value of calcium, Wixter’s sustainably sourced Shrimp are meeting the demand for America’s most popular seafood. Whether it’s an Etouffee, Shrimp cocktail, scampi, or your family’s favorite recipe, these American Shrimp are perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

    Item 24152 – 9 LB Case    

    Item of the Day:  Goat Cheese & Honey Phyllo

    By | Appetizers, Catering, Charcuterie, Cheese, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, What Chefs Want

    Goat Cheese & Honey Phyllo – Item 02873    


    Perfect for the upcoming catering season!

     The sweet flavor of wild clover honey paired with a fresh goat and cream cheese blend, wrapped in buttery phyllo pastry and brushed with a brown sugar crumble. Great for passed hors d’oeuvres and dessert plates. Contains soy, milk, and wheat. Requires baking for 4-6 minutes.

    Item 02873 – 200 CT Case   

    Item of the Day: Pinewood Boat

    By | Appetizers, Catering, Cheese, Chef's Feed, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, Paper / To-Go, What Chefs Want

    PETITE PINEWOOD BOAT 5.5X3.2 – Item 98198    


    Perfect for the upcoming catering season!

    Great for displaying a variety of items, our boat shaped bowls are an elegant way to make a statement at any event. Available in various sizes, they are multi-purpose and can be used either as a serving dish or food display. Made of pinewood they are biodegradable and disposable.

    PINEWOOD BOAT W06 – SIZE: 5.5X3.2

    *We offer a variety of different sizes 2.8″x2″ up to 8.7″x4.1″

    Item 98198 – 50 CT Pack

    Item of the Day: Mortadella with Pistachios

    By | Appetizers, Charcuterie, Chef's Feed, Gourmet, Hors d'oeuvre, Item of the Day, Meats, Pork, What Chefs Want

    Mortadella with Pistachios

    Berkshire rendition of the classic from Emilia Romagna. Studded with whole black peppercorns, cubes of back fat and Pariani DOP (Denominazione d’ Origine Protetta – “Protected Designation of Origin”Sicilian Pistachios.

    FUN FACT: Mortadella originated in Bologna, the capital of Emilia-Romagna. Anna Del Conte (The Gastronomy of Italy 2001) found a sausage mentioned in a document of the official body of meat preservers in Bologna dated 1376 that may be mortadella.

     Item 95023 – 7 Lb Piece