The first leg of our Mediterranean excursion starts in France. Not a bad place to start, don’t you think? Home to the Eiffel Tower, Les Champs-Elysées, The Lourve, yes; but let’s not forget about the food.
I still remember the first time my family took me to a local French patisserie as a child. My parents love to tell me the story of how I stood in front of the glass case mesmerized by all the pretty sweets on display. It’s amazing how, within a single memory, the mind can recreate the scent of freshly baked baguettes or the image of sweets perfectly aligned on display.
I like to think that that memory played a pivotal role in me wanting to pursue cooking, but who knows. One of the things I remember most from that shop growing up is the array of tarts, sweet and savory, that the head chef was known for. Seeing as this is the first installment to A Taste of the Mediterranean and we’re on our way to France now, I thought we could make tarts for the first challenge.
The tarts could be sweet or savory, it’s up to you! Probably many of you (with exception of the kiwis and aussies) are wondering where you can find fresh berries like these this time of year without having to pay an arm and a leg for them.
The simple solution is to not limit yourself to summertime berries! Luckily, one of my favorite French food bloggers, Fanny from Foodbeam, is not only our lovely co-host for this month, but she also has a couple of amazing posts for some tart inspiration.
On her blog, Fanny has a milk chocolate passion fruit tart with roasted pineapples inspired by Pierre Hermé – of course in French that all rolls off the tongue as as simple as Tarte chocolat au lait et fruit de la passion, ananas rôti. How’s that for inspiration? Not only that, but Fanny also offers a beautiful step-by-step tutorial on how to make your very own pâte sucrée at home, here.
The first challenge for A Taste of the Mediterranean is to create your own tart, sweet or savory. The blogger with the winning tart will receive a $50 gift certificate to igourmet.
Submission Deadline:January 31, 2009