Monday, June 20, 2011

Tunisian Lamb & Eggplant Stew with Farro, Parsley, & Harissa

I have so much more to tell you about our Paris trip, but I have to pause that story line for a moment, so that I can tell you about our Father's Day meal. Truthfully, I've been itching to write about cooking again too.

I bought a lamb shoulder the other day at Whole Foods with no real plan. I figured some sort of long slow cook would produce a scrumptious meal and I knew that hiding somewhere within the hundreds of cookbooks I have lining my shelves I would find the perfect inspiration.

My mom came over later in the day and we realized the best option for Father's Day would be to gather the gang over here at my house for dinner. Lamb shoulder to the rescue! I flipped through a few French cookbooks, but I wasn't finding what I was searching for. When I came across Suzanne Goin's Sunday Suppers At Lucques, I had a hunch my Father's Day recipe was inside.

Right I was!

On page 223 was just the thing, a recipe for Tunisian lamb and eggplant stew with farro, parsley, and harissa. It looked exotic and homey, but exciting and like something that would appeal to the two important fathers in my life. The recipe was in the fall portion of the book, but with all this miserable June Gloom, a stew seemed appropriate.

This was Thursday, so I had to get started immediately. Suzanne Goin's food is deceptive in its honest, straightforward appeal. It seems simple, but it is not. At all. Her recipes tend to take a few days or at least one entire day to complete. Almost every recipe contains three or four recipes that come together to produce an enticing and marvelous whole.

Needless to say they are rather time-consuming and I haven't bothered with the book since Fe. was born. Since I was starting well in advance the Tunisian lamb seemed manageable and kind of thrilling. An exciting food project that I could share with you!

The effort was absolutely worth it. Dinner was a smash hit and I felt deeply satisfied with the results. Plus I have plenty of tender lamb left over for another dinner and a crock of dark, smoky harissa in the refrigerator that I have been sneaking nips of all day.

You need to marinate the lamb the night before you plan to cook it. You can cook the lamb one to two days before you intend to eat the stew, because as with most braises this one tastes even better after a day or two of rest. My plan of attack was to marinate Thursday, cook Friday, and prepare the harissa on Saturday. That left me with only the farro to wrangle with on Father's Day. It isn't necessary to spend this many days on this menu, but I had to do most of the cooking during Fe.'s naps.

The lamb is seasoned with toasted caraway and coriander seeds, chiles de árbol, paprika and cayenne (I cut it in half, so as not to punish my parents), garlic and olive oil. The overnight marinade penetrates the meat giving it a spicy Tunisian flavor. The smell of the caraway and coriander toasting was fantastic. In fact ever aspect of cooking this dish fills the house with extraordinary aromas.

The marinating is the easy part. Browning all of that lamb is another story. Have you noticed when a cookbook suggests that you might have to brown the meat in two batches that they actually mean four? And when you multiply the twenty minutes alloted for this project by four batches you are actually getting hot oil spattered on your face for closer to an hour? I don't mind browning a large cut of meat, but when it comes to searing two-inch cubes of meat, I find that it gives me a real pain-in-the-ass. Sorry, but it's the truth.

After the browning, the rest of the braise is no problem. You cook the onions, scrape up the crispy bits, add the stocks (Goin asks for veal and chicken, but I used chicken exclusively) and spices and then you cover tightly with plastic wrap and aluminum foil. This step is crucial.

Cover that pot tightly, because otherwise you'll lose more of the precious broth then you'd like. I was careful with the plastic wrap, but a tiny bit lazy with the foil. I also let the lamb braise for closer to three and three-quarters hours than the required three (what can I say? we had a Birthday party to attend). When I uncovered the pot, the meat was perfectly cooked, but there was far less broth than I would have wanted and far less than Goin suggested there would be.

This wasn't grave. I added chicken stock to soup up the dish a bit when I reheated the stew on Father's Day. Just keep these things in mind if you tend towards being a perfectionist (which Goin clearly does).

Frying the eggplant is another grease facial that took many batches. Five, I believe. Not a big deal, but it does mean that you are using substantially more olive oil than the recipe indicates. You'll need to adjust to keep the pan oiled. It's possible too, that my eggplants were larger than the medium-sized nightshades that Goin requests. Honestly, you don't mind all this frying because the house is already smelling so divine that you're feeling quite good about yourself and your culinary prowess.

After the lamb has braised, a good portion of the braising juices are removed, and the Dutch oven full of lamb is then popped back into an even hotter oven to caramelize the meat. Finally the luscious little cubes of eggplant are folded into the lamb. Goin asks you to reduce the braising juices, but since I was so short on broth, I omitted this step entirely. I also didn't do much of the straining she requires, because I was happy with the soft vegetable matter.

I returned the broth to the pot and happily tucked the stew into the refrigerator, once it had cooled. I was enthused, but also rather relieved to be done for the day.

Saturday brought the harissa preparation. This was far less complicated than I had anticipated and the reward was far greater. I'd make this smoky and warming North African spice paste again in a heartbeat. It's the kind of thing that I'd like to have in the refrigerator all the time. In fact, I do routinely have harissa in the fridge all the time, but this is different in a smokier and slightly less spicy way than the more vegetal condiment I buy in the tube or the fancier and spicier paste I purchase in the jar.

The ancho chiles are seeded and toasted in a pan. While they are soaking in hot water, you cook a third of a cup of tomatoes for a spell to deepen their flavor. There's more seed toasting and pounding. This time it's cumin. And after that, all the ingredients are given a whiz in the food processor. Slowly add olive oil and then a squeeze of lemon and perhaps a pinch more salt.

And just like that, you have homemade harissa. It's well worth having this recipe for harissa in your arsenal. Dip raw vegetables in it. Or jazz up the flank steak you meant to marinate and grill. I can't wait to try it on chicken tonight.

My mom had agreed to bring the appetizers, dessert and a salad, so Sunday was really a cinch. I actually got to spend some time with the fathers. Making farro is not hard. You just need time to cook the grain to your liking. It is a bit of a crunchy sucker. Farro has lots of texture. A. said something about how chewing it was like bouncing tiny basketballs off his teeth. Not sure if that's good or bad, but I'm a fan. It is far more interesting, healthier and nuttier than rice.

Goin's recipe for farro includes onion, thyme, cinnamon, chiles de árbol, bay, parsley, and butter. This portion of the menu also smells heavenly as it cooks. I'd give yourself at least forty minutes to bring the grain to tender.

The recipe suggests plating all of the farro on a large platter and spooning the lamb and eggplant on top, then dolloping the harissa over the meat and serving the braising juices and the rest of the harissa on the side. I didn't bother with this presentation. I served each portion individually with the broth poured over. I also kept the harissa in a dish on the side, respecting those who couldn't really hack any more heat.

I don't think it matters at all which way you choose to plate the dish. I'm certain your guests will be very pleased to receive the piping hot, spicy and earthy stew anyway they can get it.

Tunisian Lamb & Eggplant Stew

1 tablespoon caraway seeds
2 tablespoons coriander seeds
3 pounds lamb shoulder, cut into 1 1/2-to-2-inch chunks
6 cloves garlic, smashed
3 chiles de árbol, crumbled
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups diced onion
2 bay leaves, fresh if possible
3/4 cup San Marzano canned tomatoes, crushed
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 1/2 cups veal stock
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon allspice berries, tied in cheesecloth
2 medium eggplants
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Toast the caraway seeds in a small pan, until fragrant and slightly darkened. Pound the seeds coarsely using a mortar and pestle. Do the same with the coriander.

Mix the lamb in a large bowl with the caraway, coriander, garlic, chiles, paprika, cayenne, and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Mix with your hands until the lamb is well coated with the oil and spices. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Remove the meat from the refrigerator about 45 minutes prior to cooking. After 15 minutes season all over with 1 tablespoon and 2 teaspoons of salt and plenty of pepper. Reserve the garlic.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Heat a large Dutch oven over high heat for 3 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons olive oil to the pot and let it warm for 2 minutes, until the pot is very hot, nearly smoking. Add the meat to the pot. Do not crowd the pan. This will take at least two, likely three or four batches. Brown the meat until it is well seared on all sides. As each batch is completed, place the meat on a large platter.

Lower the heat to medium and add the onion, bay leaves, and garlic. Stir with a wooden spoon, being certain to scrape up all the browned bits. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, until the onions are caramelized. Add the tomatoes and lemon juice and cook for 2 minutes, stirring.

Stir in the stocks, cinnamon, and allspice. Bring to a boil.

Remove the pot from the heat. Add the lamb and the accumulated juices to the pot. Cover with plastic wrap, aluminum foil and a tight lid. Braise in the oven for 3 hours.

While the meat is braising, cut the eggplant into 1-inch cubes. Place the eggplant in a large colander and toss with salt. Allow to drain for 10 minutes. Dry the eggplant with paper towels. Heat a large pan over high heat for 2 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons olive oil, and let warm for 1 minute. Add the eggplant and allow to brown for a couple of minutes. Again, do not crowd the pan. This will take 3 or 4 batches to complete. Stir the eggplant to achieve a golden brown color on all sides, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet.

When the 3 hours is up, check the meat for tenderness, being exceptionally careful of the hot steam that will come wafting out of the pot. If it is not nearly falling apart, cook for a bit longer.

When done, remove the meat from the oven and raise the oven temperature to 400 degrees.

Ladle most of the braising liquid into a strainer set over a saucepan, leaving an inch or two of juices in the pot with the lamb. Press down on the vegetables with the ladle to extract all the juices. Discard the cinnamon and allspice.

Return the lamb to the oven for 15 minutes, in order to caramelize it.

Skim the fat from the braising liquid. Reduce the broth over medium-high heat to thicken it, if necessary. Taste for salt and pepper.

Mix in the eggplant with the lamb and pour the hot broth over the top, stirring.

Transfer the farro onto a large warm platter. Spoon the lamb and eggplant over the farro. Dollop the harissa over the meat, scatter the parsley on top, and serve the remaining harissa and braising juices on the side.


6 dried ancho chiles, seeded, membranes removed
1/3 cup San Marzano canned tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
A healthy pinch cayene pepper
1/2 teaspoon sherry vinegar
1/2 lemon, for juicing
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat a large pan over high heat for 1 minute. Add the chiles and dry-toast them for a few minutes until blistered and slightly darkened. Place them in a bowl and cover with hot water. Let soak for 15 minutes.

Return the pan to the burner and add the tomato. Cook over medium heat for a few minutes until slightly darkened and juices are reduced.

Toast the cumin seeds in a small pan, until aromatic and slightly darkened. Pound coarsely using a mortar and pestle.

Drain the chiles well and put them in a food processor with the garlic, tomatoes, paprika, cumin, cayenne, vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, and a pinch of pepper. Purée. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil and blend until incorporated. Season with a good squeeze of lemon juice and more salt if needed.

Farro with Parsley and Butter

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion
1 tablespoon thyme leaves
1 cinnamon stick
2 chiles de árbol, crumbled
1 bay leaf, preferably fresh
1 1/2 cups farro (spelt)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat a medium saucepan over high heat for 1 minute. Pour in the olive oil and add the diced onion, thyme, cinnamon stick, chiles, and bay leaf. Cook for 4 minutes stirring, until the onion is translucent.

Add the farro, stirring to coat it with oil, and toast it slightly. Add 8 cups water and 2 teaspoons salt. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for approximately 30 minutes, until tender and just cooked through. Drain the farro, and discard the cinnamon stick, chiles, and bay leaf. Toss the farro with the butter. When the butter has melted, stir in the parsley and a few grindings of black pepper. Taste for salt.

Serves 6

Monday, June 13, 2011

Paris - Chéri Bibi

I can't confidently recommend taking an Ambien on the flight to Paris from Los Angeles. I thought I had it all figured out. A nonstop 1 p.m. flight would land us in Paris at 8:55 a.m. (Paris time) the following morning. So I took the sleeping meds about seven and a half hours before we arrived. Well, I was in something of a jetlagged fog for the next three days. While A. was recovering in less than two. Sleep bedevils me all the time. I cannot conquer it, and Ambien never really helps.

I had planned ahead for the fog, and reserved a table at a bistro near our B&B in the Montmartre district several weeks earlier. In fact I made a quite a few calls to Paris in advance of our trip, struggling with poor connections and seriously rusty French. I was denied a number of times, but was successful a satisfying four (more to come!)!

Unamusingly, I just received the phone bill that reflects my earnest attempts to secure divine dining in Paris. I'll tell you this, but don't tell A. The bill came to $313.11.

We could have gone out for at least one more dinner!

I'll keep my feelings about AT&T to myself, but really, $3.25 per minute to France makes me feel rather murderous.

Cough. Sorry for the rant! Back to what matters.

I'd read about Chéri Bibi in Alexander Lobrano's handy Hungry For Paris: The Ultimate Guide to the City's 102 Best Restaurants. One hundred and two! Funny number. In any event the restaurant was one of the one hundred and two and was walking distance from our B&B, the lovely and very clean Au Sourire de Monmartre, (highly recommend it!). Possessing only one dollar sign out of a possible four rating, this was inexpensive by Paris standards, and perfect for us.

We managed a nap, and strolled around the Sacre Coeur and later the Champs Elysée, but our lids were heavy and we lacked our usual pizzazz. Why are jetlag and plane travel such killers? It was almost too much to motivate to stay up for dinner.

Chéri Bibi was the perfect antidote to our fatigue. The staff was kind and forgave us our grammatical embarrassments. It is a smallish bistro with warm lighting and folding glass doors which open onto the sidewalks on summer evenings, run by a youthful crew of gorgeous French folk. The menu is written on a chalkboard and you might have to twist about to get a look at the wine list on the wall. Casual and comfortable (and comforting), this bistro has a hip and exciting buzz about it.

Not too far into our meal, I was bemoaning the lack of restaurants like Chéri Bibi in Los Angeles. It's the kind of place that I would love to have down the street from my house, something like a Canelé in Los Angeles, but way more French and far more delicious. I started thinking that I should open a bistro like Chéri Bibi, but that's not right.

I want someone else to do it.

The menu is 26 euros for an entrée, un plat (main dish) and a dessert. I opted for the plump violet asparagus from Landes that I had already seen in many of the vegetable shops around the city. They were lightly steamed or poached and dressed with a fruity olive oil, a sheep's milk cacciota and cracked pepper. These asparagus were stunning in their simplicity. We don't see asparagus this delectable in Los Angeles. Or at least, I haven't.

A. selected the shrimp with piment (might have been paprika or more likely piment d'espelette) and coriander. These were succulent beasts. We chomped the heads and all.

The food at Chéri Bibi is supposedly terroir style cooking. Meaning that it harkens back to an older time in Paris when the cuisine was heartier and more rustic, more of the earth. This may be the case, but somehow I managed to order in a different vane. I was delighted by how fresh and light everything seemed (except les pommes de terre).

Of course, I wasn't the one who ordered the lamb shoulder cooked in milk from the Pyrenees and duck fat. That was A. I've never seen lamb shoulder served on the bone here in the States as it was at Chéri Bibi. When A. saw it presented at another table, he wondered if it might be the duck magret.

Um, not quite. But let's face it, he isn't that familiar with fowl. The lamb was scrumptious and I suppose you could call it rustic. It took quite a bit of carving to finish it off, but I felt it was well worth the effort.

Each main dish comes with a choice of sautéed vegetables, mashed potatoes, house made fries, or a salad. It must have been the sound of pommes purées in French that had me ordering mashed potatoes with my lieu jaune (pollack) tartare. I never order mashed potatoes (and certainly not with a fish tartare). They are far too heavy and fattening to justify.

But, whoa! If it is possible, these were a revelation in potatoes. They were as buttery and decadent as any dessert. Just as sinful and equally as satisfying. It was a entirely different potato experience. My eyes have been opened anew.

Can you see all that butter? When the general guilt surrounding eating in Paris wears off, I am going to prepare some potatoes like those at Chéri Bibi. Those alone were worth staying awake for.

My pollack tartare with pesto (not as glamorous sounding as Le Tartare de Lieu Jaune au Pesto), impressed the hell out of me. The fish was remarkably fresh and clean tasting. The coarse pesto atop the fish complemented it suprisingly well, as did the olive vinaigrette drizzled alongside. These strong pesto and olive flavors are so often paired with a stronger main-player, but this absolutely worked without overpowering the delicate fish.

After a glass of champagne, a bottle of wine and very little sleep, I was too wiped out to remember to take pictures of our desserts. We shared an adequate albeit runny rice pudding with caramel (nothing compared to the rice pudding later in our vacation) and a sheeps milk cheese with an herbaceous ruby jam of Corsican cherries and thyme.

We stumbled out of the cozy glow of the restaurant into the warm night for a tour past the Sacre Coeur and a short walk home. We were sated, exhausted and happy.

Chéri Bibi
15 rue André-del-Sarte
75018 Paris
18th. Arrondissement
01 42 54 88 96

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Paris - L'As du Fallafel

It's a little awkward when you're momentarily stumped as a close family friend asks you what you did during your eight day vacation in Paris that did not involve food. Worse is when your mother chimes in, revealing that almost all the photos taken on said vacation are shots of food.

I hope I'm not that one-dimensional.

But we were in Paris, for goodness sake! A new culinary experience may be had around every corner. I spent a lot of time preparing for the food aspect of our trip. I honestly didn't give a hoot what else we bothered with. A. and I have been to Paris quite a few times, so we'd already done our fair share of the touristy stuff. We wanted to walk and walk and walk around the city and drink (and eat!) it all in.

Don't get me wrong, we stumbled over plenty of important historic landmarks while we were in Paris. We strolled by the Sacre Coeur at night on our way back from a terrific little bistro in Monmartre called Chèri Bibi. I definitely glanced at Notre Dame whilst searching for the perfect place to enjoy a cone of Berthillon ice cream (salted caramel and bitter chocolate sorbet!). And slightly tipsy and full of rice pudding after a wonderful dinner at Chez L'Ami Jean, we wandered over to the Eiffel Tower and then along the Seine becoming more and more inebriated on the intoxicant that is Paris at night.

You get the idea.

In the end, you folks are reading this blog to hear about the food, not how extraordinary the Odilon Redon - The Prince of Dreams exhibition at the Grand Palais was. As a side note though, it was out-of-this-world and I would highly recommend it if you are in Paris before June 20, 2011. Sorry, not much time left.

I have to ease into the story. I'm overwhelmed by how much we ate. I ran seven miles yesterday in a continued attempt to wage war against certain side effects of eating your way through the French capital. So today I'll start with a smaller dining experience.

Perhaps you remember that I mentioned Lenny Kravitz' favorite falafel joint. Not that I would normally seek out Kravitz' favorite anything. I would not. But the people behind L'As du Fallafel think it is a major selling point. They display this fact prominently on their signage, which makes me laugh.

Turns out he does have great taste in falafel. So do a lot of people. L'As du Fallafel is on everyone's list of best cheap eats in Paris. I've been going there since 2003, when my dear friend Brian (Bri Bri! Thanks for the tips!) took my sister and I there during another ridiculous foodcation.

It is still really satisfying, particularly when you find that you are feeling just a little bit tired of all that French food. And trust me, you will find your palate longing for something other than la cuisine française when you are in France. This is especially true if you are from Los Angeles and partake of all the ethnic food that our diverse city has to offer. In wondering whether our family should actually pick up and pack up and move to Paris, I started panicking when I thought about how little spicy food I would be able avail myself of.

Obviously, there are trade-offs.

L'As du Fallafel is hugely popular. You'll always find a line, sometimes a very long line. If you take your falafel to go, the wait won't be nearly as taxing. Just be ready to order, because they are a rather brusque bunch.

I am unable to comment on the shwarma or anything else on the menu other than the falafel, because I am often a creature of habit and when I love something I do not want to jack up my order. I always choose the Fallafel Special.

It is a massive pita filled way past overflowing. It's not just falafel inside. Nope. You'll find mildly pickled red cabbage, crunchy grated cucumber, glorious fried eggplant, tahini and a moderately hot harissa. They asked me if I wanted hot sauce and I said lots! A little squirt was all I got, but that was no big thing, because the sandwich as a whole is soundly delicious.

The success of it hinges on the size of the falafel. They are small, so the oil is able to penetrate, producing a delightfully crispy yet moist little falafel. There are no ultra-dry parts right in the center of the fritter, which often happens elsewhere.

The to-go order is your best bet, but it is quite the handful and if you're alone (which I was) and juggling a giant purse and bags of goodies, you'll be challenged to be sure. I can't even begin to tell you how complicated it was to take the above photo. I must have looked like an insane American contortionist.

Ringing in at 7 euros, this will likely be one of the most affordable meals you'll find in Paris. It's the kind of tasty lunch that will fortify you and keep you happily walking along the cobblestone streets towards your next dinner.

L'As du Fallafel
34 Rue Des Rosiers
75004 Paris
4th Arrondissement
01 48 87 63 60

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

A Jaunt Up The Coast -- Part III Jocko's

I'm dying to tell you about Paris. C'était vraiment fantastique! But there is just no way that I can start that until I finish up the story about our little trip up the coast. My compulsive-self simply will not allow it. Just one last meal to mention!

You'll thank me. I'm positive.

So when I was a kid I had braces like so many others. If you check out my somewhat crooked teeth, you'll realize that the braces were hopefully not the best thing that Dr. Julian Singer did for me.

The single best thing that Dr. Singer actually did for me was to turn my family on to Jocko's in Nipomo, California. Far better and less expensive than the braces, to be sure.

Jocko's is an unassuming restaurant that serves meat -- big meat -- grilled in the Santa Maria fashion. The restaurant itself is highly unglamorous. It possesses all of the charm of an eighty-year old bingo hall. The tablecloths are red and white checked oilcloth and the crowd is likely in t-shirts and shorts or cowboy boots and hats, which all adds to a very casual central California feel.

Jocko's has been around in some form since 1926 (the barbecuing began in the '50s), so it's full of history. People love Jocko's, and for good reason. They are incredibly no-nonsense about their meat, grilling gorgeous cuts of beef over flaming Santa Maria-style barbecue pits. Hell, I've even eaten the biggest plate of sweetbreads I have ever seen in my life at Jocko's, some fifteen years ago.

These days, with Fe. in tow, I hardly make it to Jocko's and certainly not for dinner, which is sad, because that is when the grills are fired up. Dinner is the best meal at Jocko's, but don't pass the Tefft Street exit off of the 101 just because it is lunch time!

If it is lunch time at Jocko's, I always order the same thing, the steak sandwich. Now, if you're a big shot, maybe you'll order the Large Steak Sandwich for $16 (comes with fries, beans and a dinner salad). But if you're a person with a normally sizable appetite like myself, just stick with the steak sandwich ($12, comes with beans and a salad). The portions are enormous and a perfect example of why the United States has problems with obesity. But shoot, every once in awhile it is so much fun to make a pig of yourself.

The almost two-inch steak on the over two-inch thick Texas-style toast is a gorgeous, perfectly cooked rib-eye (my all time favorite cut of steak!). A little bit fatty with a just the right amount of chew, this incredibly juicy steak will satisfy all of your carnivorous cravings.

At lunch, you'll miss the wood-fire grilling right outside the dining room. You'll also miss the famous relish tray comprised of raw carrots, celery and radishes and pickled peppers. Thankfully you won't miss the mild salsa (vaguely reminiscent of stewed tomatoes, but far more compelling), the packaged garlic and onion crackers, or the dinner salad full of cold crisp iceberg lettuce and red cabbage. It is good and it will send you back to crunchier salad days.

The dark, slightly divey bar will be open at lunchtime too! We're always mid-drive to or from somewhere in California, otherwise I would partake. Believe me. I hear it can get pretty fun in there, just ask my awesome Mother-In-Law!

I think of Jocko's as a California treasure. If I were younger and slightly more carefree, I'd drive the 3 hours to Nipomo just for dinner. It's that good.

125 N. Thompson Avenue
Nipomo, CA 93444