Vitaly Paley is the award-winning chef/owner of Paley's Place in Portland, Ore., and the author of The Paley's Place Cookbook: Recipes and Stories from the Pacific Northwest.
"Using chapelure de legumes, or vegetable 'crumbs,' is a technique I learned in France when I worked there in the early 1990s. I just love the way the crunchy little flecks cover the roast and perfume the dish, add some color and accent the already crispy skin of the bird. I often use little guinea fowl because they cook up into a great one-pot meal, but it's easy to apply the same technique with a chicken, a turkey, a duck — almost anything. And if you have any 'crumbs' left over, you can mix them with cider vinegar and buttermilk to make a fantastic ranch dressing."
Serve with: "A friend of mine who is a baker taught me to make an incredible potato galette that's perfect for holiday meals. Basically, you take homemade puff pastry and layer it with thinly sliced potatoes, parsley, thyme and cream, and then top it all with pastry, seal it up and bake. When it's done, you pierce the top so steam comes out and dollop it with creme fraiche, which gets all wonderfully oozy. I slice it into wedges and serve it as a side. It's so decadent and well-presented but also totally simple. The ooohs and ahhhs don't stop for hours."
Pro tip: "Two things: plan ahead and ask for help. Get those guys off the couch, give them a beer and say, 'Help me chop these onions!'"