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SORTING THROUGH THE cookbook shelves, I came upon this little gem from Auberge D’Chez Eux, a Parisian restaurant having earlier made a SimanaitisSays appearance.
Its Traditions et cuisine de Sud-Ouest call for a encore here. I didn’t realize back in 2006 that the restaurant already had forty years of serving the specialities of southwestern France. Here are tidbits, including several recipes as well as charming illustrations of traditional French cuisine.
Coquilles Saint-Jacques Avec Echalote Confite. My first cookbook was Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. And, together with flipping omelettes, learning Julia’s Coquilles Saint-Jacques was one of my first serious culinary adventures.
Crystallized aka caramelized shallots have become trendy today. Check out Jenna Passaro’s technique.
Cassoulet au Confit de Canard. Cassoulet is a French country stew containing white beans, sausages, duck or goose confit, and additional meat. As described by Wikipedia, “It is named after its traditional cooking vessel, the casserole, a deep, round, earthenware pot with slanted sides.”
Wikipedia cites, “In the process of preparing the dish it is traditional to deglaze the pot from the previous cassoulet in order to give a base for the next one. This has led to stories, such as the one given by Elizabeth David, citing Anatole France, of a single original cassoulet being extended for years or even decades.”
Techniques and Equipment. Those trained in classical French cuisine learn painstaking techniques, several of which are illustrated.
I suspect I’m less than artful in my mixing ingredients or preparing mushrooms. I confess that, with exception of a couple hours with Paul Prudhomme, my formal training is zilch.
I appreciate, however, the mechanical sturdiness of the Machine à hacher. I wonder where I might find a classic one.
Farçon Savoyard. Saveur magazine says a farçon may be “interpreted in many delicious ways…. And in the Savoie… Well, it is a grand tradition. In its hearty simplicity and imaginative combination of raw materials, it just might be the quintessential Savoyard dish.”
Saveur observes, “Every village—every family, it sometimes seems—has its own method for preparing it…. The one thing everyone seems to agree on, though, is that farçon should be cooked long and slow. It is a Sunday dish, one that can be put in the oven before leaving for Mass. The longer the cooking, the better the farçon.”
Or one might simply enjoy it at D’Chez Eux. ds
© Dennis Simanaitis, SimanaitisSays.com, 2022