I’ve decided to leave the “impressions after nearly two months (part 2) for another time…I’ve just discovered this new French dish and I’m going to leap in with both feet and try it out for dinner tonight. It’s called tartiflettes. Apparently you get good tartiflettes, bad tartiflettes and outstandingly wonderful tartiflettes (I’m hoping to make the latter – but you never know). It’s simple enough but you need the right ingredients and to the French, the right ingredients mean fresh and not swamped in mustard or tomato sauce. You have to be able to taste each thing..a potato, you must taste that it is actually a potato, pulled straight from your back garden (or the market). What’s the use of using a delicious potato purely as a carrier for you to eat tomato sauce…mmm..I’m learning they have a point.
So, we have very few ingredients. Potatoes (and the lady at the market insisted that these ones were for tartiflettes, you DON’T use those ones, please put them down and take the other ones ..what’s WRONG with you..OK, so potatoes, lardons Fume..to bring this very grand sounding ingredient down to size, its simply streaky bacon cut into small thick strips..but here the choice of bacon is huge…bio, non fume ( not smoked) fume (smoked), long (like we buy in SA) or cut into bits (and called lardons). So, potatoes, lardons, garlic… I pause here again. I nearly feel over when I saw the garlic. I know the french are known to love garlic, but really – do they have to grow it so huge? And on an aside…I was complaining to the neighbour the other day ( a very nice gentleman who has taken it upon himself to see that we’re ok and to make sure anything I might say in French is pronounced correctly) that I can’t find any vitamins as such – the choice here is very limited. And he told me that the french don’t take a lot of vitamins but they do live a very long time..which is true. So I was hunting on the net to see what I could get to build up immunity ( the C.F.S has hit in a big way and I needed help) and voila, I find the best thing to take is garlic. And then I had an aahh moment..now I understand why the french don’t dwell on medicines, flu prevention, vitamins etc. They eat a lot of very fresh veggies and they lace everything with this ginormous garlic!
I digress…where was I …oh yes, potatoes, lardons, garlic, onion and a very unusual cheese called Reblochon. It’s a round cheese, a bit like brie..but not…and you layer it with the ingredient and drizzle the whole thing with white wine and the bake. This is where I am going to make a slight alteration, I don’t have any white wine, I forgot to buy some so I am going to drizzle the dish with Cidre (cider – this stuff I could drink till it’s coming out of my ears..it comes in Brut, Deus, Sec and everything in between. The husband likes it Dry (brut) I like it when it comes out of the bottle and into my glass. It tastes like apples coated in Summer sun and it goes down like a homesick mole.
So…I’m off to do that now..washed down with some cidre
Will let you know how it went and whether I would ever be brave enough to serve it to french friends…
A la Prochaine, bon appetite