French chefs have a reputation for being stern and bad-tempered. They do exist, but Nicolas Bacheyre, the award-winning head pastry chef at Un Dimanche à Paris, although very disciplined, and hard working can also be seen making mischief in the kitchen from time to time. And he has been my target for the past four years.
It’s that time of year when we gather with friends and family and crack open a bottle of that heavenly bubbly wine in the spirit of celebration. While entertaining, I am often trotting lots of appetizers out of the kitchen to serve to guests. Champagne really is a very versatile option and more than any other wine, it pairs surprisingly well with lots of appetizers and a broad range of foods.
The low alcohol content of champagne won’t overwhelm food. Its acidity cuts through rich, fatty dishes, and also works well with things like tomatoes, vinegars and mildly spiced foods. There is always the brie or camembert cheese with a crispy baguette, as well as strawberries that make a quintessential pairing. Fish and seafoods are also classics. However, here are a few more common appetizers that you can bump up a notch for a special occasion by adding champagne as an accompaniment:
To up your game a little and very simply, add some truffle salt to the popcorn or fries. For special, seasonal, deviled eggs here is a simple recipe for foie gras deviled eggs:
3 tablespoons, Heavy cream
1 tablespoon, Whole grain mustard
2 tablespoons, Mayonnaise
4 tablespoons, Foie gras
Put eggs in a pot of cold water, bring to a boil and cook for 12 minutes. Pour out water, put eggs in cold water, then peel them, cut in half and separate the yolks.
Mix the yolks with the mustard, cream, mayonnaise and foie gras in a food processor and season with salt and pepper.
Use a pastry bag to fill the halves of the egg whites with the mixture. Sprinkle lightly with tarragon. Real bacon bits also make a delicious addition.
Many of us believe that champagne is too delicate for many food pairings, but don’t let that fizz of fine, champagne bubbles dancing on your tongue deceive you. It mingles beautifully with so many flavors and textures that it is the perfect drink to add to the to the joyful spirit of the holiday season.
Jojo&Co Take Away:
Marché d'Aligre 75012 Paris - 06 18 34 26 02
From Wednesday to Saturday: 9h-13h and 16h-19h / Saturday: 9h-14h30 and 15h-19h30 / Sunday: 8h30-14h
Jojo&Co Tea Room:
5 Rue Bourdaloue 75009 Paris - 09 80 36 59 60
From Tuesday to Friday : 8h30-18h30 / Saturday: 10h-18h30
Article by Cindy Joffroy, Parisian based reporter with a penchant for sussing out the sweetest addresses in the city.
The Marché d’Aligre, tucked away in the east end, is known to be one of the most animated, exotic and cosmopolitan food markets in Paris. Full of fruits, vegetables, spices and specialties from all around the world, it is, in itself, an intriguing place to visit while staying in the city.
Between grocers and cheese mongers, the small Jojo&Co’s pastry booth offers a large range of treats. All of them are homemade, entirely cooked and baked on the spot. In a minute, windowed kitchen, you can observe the pastry team at work, performing acts that are truly magical.
Seasonal fine pastries (the Paris-Sesame is a classic here; similar to a Paris-Brest except that hazelnut has been replaced by roasted sesame seeds) stand alongside viennoiseries, biscuits and individual cakes. The most difficult part for you will be to pick just one of them.
The good news is that for those of you who want to take your time and enjoy a relaxing moment, in a natural and cozy place, they have recently opened in center of Paris. In both spots you will find the same sweet proposals but the salon adds several savory snacks cooked on site (quiches, gratin dauphinoise, salads and sandwiches).
Must Eat: The “Brioche Feuilletée”. This is brioche dough folded like puff pastry to create a unique crusty and moist swirl of happiness.