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French Friday

Currently touring: Provence, France

French Friday: Provence

Pomegranate with Brie and Balsamic Reduction

Balsamic vinegar is not made from wine like regular vinegar, but from grapes with a high sugar content. They are slowly cooked to create a concentrate and were traditionally placed in barrels where left unsealed to go through an evaporation process to create a syrupy type product.

Fresh Rosemary and Thyme Gourgeres

These Gourgeres (pronounced “ goo-zhair”) originated in the Burgandy area of France and are now very popular throughout the country .These very French cheese puffs are made from same dough as cream puffs. They are crisp on the outside and the centre is flavoured with a beautiful combination of cheese and herbs. They can be served as an appetizer or as a dinner roll (or just because they taste so good!)

Provencal Potato and Onion Loaf

There are dozens of French recipes using the humble potato. Here we have a loaf of bread which has potato, onions and a number of herbs to produce a very rustic looking loaf which is beautifully dense and full of flavour. It can be pulled apart or sliced and served alongside eggs and bacon for breakfast (toasted if you wish).  A wonderful accompaniment to a hot bowl of soup, or to pull apart and have warm on it’s own, this loaf of bread won’t disappoint you when you try it.

Lemon and Almond Tart

This tart is related to an Italian lemon and almond tart. The French version does not have lemon rind in the pastry but has extra lemon in the filling to give it a lemon flavoured tang.

Strawberry and Chocolate Marshmallow Slice

Here we have one version of an old recipe made in many different parts of the French countryside where ever strawberries grew in abundance. The women made many different variations of a recipe using strawberries to make a dessert, cake or slice, taste more delicious than the next door neighbour could make.

So here I have made this strawberry, chocolate and marshmallow slice which can also be made as a gluten free slice by substituting the plain flour with gluten free flour.

Tarte Tropezienne

This tart takes its name from Saint-Tropez on the French Riviera, where it is said to have originated in the mid 1940s and popularized in the 60s when St. Tropez became a tourist paradise.

This tart is not your typical tart. A tarte tropézienne is more like a baked doughnut that’s been filled with a creamy custard. The cake-y part of the tart is made with a brioche-like dough, so it’s not very sweet. The custard filling is sweet, which is what makes this some kind of dessert, although the French eat this tart as a snack or afternoon pick-me-up as well. The brioche/doughnut layer is light and fluffy, and of course the filling is delicious.

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