French Luxury Food Highways
This is the first in a series of articles dedicated to the heart of French food. Why? First of all because I have a great interest in food and cooking and second, I thought it was important to give a quick but entertaining look at the world’s greatest culinary tradition each time I visit a place for fine foods.
One adventure at a time, today’s “plat du jour” is about some innovative and attractive spots around “The Bon Marché Grande Epicerie” and in the new street Rue du Bac in Paris.
The French gastronomy heritage is singular and rich. Part of it, the luxury food sector is a key asset of the French culture worldwide which is devoted to producing gourmet foods.
The luxury food sector has multiple profiles from specialists with a unique range of products, to the catering, the multi brands distributors and multi products specialists. My day-trip around the french cuisine made me realise how much love and talent we have. Even, the scenery and narration were really excellent. Luxury is definitely about detail.
However, it is crucial to always champion and challenge certain practices to keep reinventing ourselves and always stay at our best.
FOR ME, THE MOST LUXURIOUS PLACE IS SOMEWHERE THAT ALLOWS YOU TO FEEL EMOTIONS AND PLEASURES.
“Lemon Pie” recipe by French chef Thierry Marx taken from the book Daily Marx:
250g of flour
125g butter (diced)
1/2 teaspoon fine salt (only req’d if unsalted butter used)
Lemon cream filling
200g creme fraiche (whipped)
200g of sugar
1 yellow lemon
For the shortcrust pastry
Zest half the lemon.
Mix together the flour, lemon zest and chunks of butter
Add half a glass of water and knead thoroughly.
Form the dough into a ball and let rest (if possible 1 hour).
For the tart
- Preheat oven to 180°C (Gas mark 6).
- Zest the lemon and squeeze out the juice. Set it aside.
- Roll out the pastry to a thin layer and place it in a floured (or buttered) pie plate. Cover the pastry with a sheet of baking paper and top with baking beads or dried vegetables inside (dry beans / lentils etc.) so that it stays level during pre-cooking. Cook the pastry in the oven for 15 minutes.
- Prepare a lemon syrup: boil 100ml of water with 100g of sugar, the juice and half of the lemon zest.
- Make the lemon cream: Separate the yolks from the whites of 4 eggs. In a separate bowl, whisk 4 egg yolks with 3 whole eggs and the remaining sugar. Add the cornflour to the mix, whisking vigorously and then add the lemon syrup. Pour the mix into a saucepan and cook on a low heat – whilst stirring – until the cream thickens. Add the butter to the hot cream. Set aside to cool.
- When the lemon cream mix is at 20°C (approximately room temperature), add in the whipped creme fraiche and pour the entire mix into the pre-baked pastry case.
- Sprinkle with the remaining lemon zest and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.