A few years ago when I was visiting some wine loving friends, one of them mentioned the idea of an ABC trip. I wasn’t sure what that meant but it was explained as a trip to visit the wine regions of Alsace, Burgundy and Champagne in France. Well that sounded absolutely perfect to me and when I got back home I immediately contacted my good friend and wine colleague, John Sherwin of French Wine Tours to help in setting up this trip. Between the people I knew in the industry as well as John, an amazing itinerary was put together.
I contacted the upstate friend who had suggested the trip to give her the great news. But, she decided she wouldn’t be able to go. In the meantime, I asked my friend, Bonnie if she could go and her answer was an exuberant, yes! Hurray.
The trip was incredible and I can write more about that later but for now, I want to talk about the finale of our trip that took place in Paris. Bonnie had realized before the trip that she had accumulated a good number of reward points on her credit card that she needed to use up. So, she found a fabulous Chef in Paris who runs cooking classes from her home and signed us both up for that for the last day of the trip.
We met Chef Marthe at her lovely apartment in the Montparnasse district and one other “student” who had signed up as well. The place was filled with shelves of cookbooks and the atmosphere was warm and inviting. Within a few minutes, we all felt like it was home.
We were given aprons and handouts with recipes for 3 dishes that we’d be making. With some guidance and instructions we all chipped in when we could. First, there was a very tasty Courgette salad (zucchini), followed by a true Quiche Lorraine and ending with an apple cake. When everything was ready, we sat down to devour it all along with a tasty salad and one of Marthe’s favorite red wines.
It’s been quite some time since I had thought about that day until this past weekend when I had an urge to make a quiche. I found the recipe for Chef Marthe’s quiche lorraine and decided to try it on my own. The result was quite delicious. I have yet to try the apple cake but now that apples are coming into season I might just give it a go.
In the meantime, here is the recipe for Chef Marthe’s Quiche Lorraine:
250 g (2 cups) flour (all purpose)
pinch of salt
125 g (5 oz) unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 350 farenheit (180c)
Put the flour and salt into a large bowl. Add butter and mix with your fingers. Add the egg and little cold water if necesary (2 or 3 tblsp)
Bring dough together with your hands and shape into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour. Remove from fridge to warm up for rolling out.
Roll out the dough to form a circle that will fit into tart pan. Butter and flour the pan shaking out excess flour. Line the pan with the dough smoothing out the sides and edges. Put pan in fridge for 30 minutes.
100g bacon (about 3.5 oz)
250 g (2 cups) heavy cream
100 g finely grated gruyere cheese (about 3.5 oz)
4 small onions finely sliced
1 tblsp butter and 1 tblsp oil
Cook bacon (fry for about 5 minutes.)
Mix cream and eggs and season with salt (very little since bacon is salty), pepper and nutmeg. Add the bacon (chopped up) and the gruyere cheese.
Melt the butter and oil in heavy saucepan and add the onions. Cook and stir for 10 minutes. If using mushrooms, add them here. Cook a bit longer (5 min.) Let the onions cool and then add to the cream mixture.
Pour into the tart pan and bake for 30-45 minutes until the quiche is golden.
All the best,