I'm afraid to say it out loud for fear that I might jinx my good fortune, but in just one week I'm heading over to France to start getting my first culinary tour organized. The last few months of herding French producers into setting defined agendas (a similar process to ushering a hundred children through a candy store), over-analyzing every possible thing which could go wrong, quadruple checking logistics, and recipe testing ALL the foods are about to come to an end.
The recipe testing has been particularly interesting because I'm 100% sure that I'll get to Provence and realize I need to make some ingredient substitutions based on what's in the markets, or, conversely, not available as a grocery staple. That's how I like to cook anyways, so I'm not too stressed about it, but does make creating guides for everyone else significantly more difficult.
So let's start with an easy one: Tart Tatin. A classic French dessert if I ever saw one. You'll easily be able to find all of the ingredients for this tart at any market. And if you're lucky you'll even be able to snag the apples from a neglected roadside tree (there were many musings on whether roadside trees spring up predominantly from people throwing cores out of moving vehicles while we were driving through Oregon and California last week).Read More