Paris Grocery seattle

January 29, 2015

Bonjour mes Amis, 

Spring is coming! The daffodils in our wine barrels out front are starting to bud, and this Monday, February 2nd is La Chandeleur

And in France forget about groundhogs. The French predict the climate of the coming year by making Crepes. There are two ways to do it:

1. Hold a coin in your left hand while you flip the crepe pan with your right. If all goes well, get ready for a lucky year.
2. Toss your first crepe on top of a high cupboard & leave it there for the year. (That would never fly in my house…)

Filling/topping ideas:
Alsa Vanilla Sugar & Paysan Breton Butter
Confitur de Cerises Noires & Creme Fraiche
Chevre & Favols Confiture Tomate Verte us Citron
Sauteed Apples & Sea Salt Caramel Cream
Jambon de Bayonne & St. Nectaire

And don’t forget some Cidre to wash it all down. We carry French ciders from Normandy, Pays Basque–even an Ice Cider!

A Bientot,
Catherine Reynolds

PUREE OF SALT COD, POTATOES, AND WALNUT OIL (Morue a la Rouergate) from The Southwest Cooking of France by Paula Wolfert $39.95
This version of Brandade gets the special southwestern touch of walnut oil…

Makes 4 1/2 to 5 cups, serves 6 to 8

1 lb boneless salt cod (whole fillets are always 10% off)
1 3/4 cup milk
Herb bouquet: 3 sprigs parsley, 1 sprig thyme, & 1 imported bay leaf tied together with string
1 onion, quartered
1 large garlic clove, halved
2 to 3 black peppercorns, freshly cracked
3/4 lb baking (russet) potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2 to 3/4 cup imported walnut oil
3 eggs: 1 raw, 2 hard-boiled
1 tsp finely chopped fresh garlic
1 tsp finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Finely ground white pepper
White wine vinegar, sherry vinegar, or fresh lemon juice
24 triangles of crustless bread, toasted or fried in olive oil, then rubbed with garlic

A day in advance, soak the cod in a large basin of cold water to cover for 18 to 24 hours, or until the fish is swollen, changing the water at least 3 times & adding 1 cup of milk for the last soaking.

Rinse the cod; cut into 3 or 4 pieces. Place in a large saucepan and cover with fresh cold water. Add the herb bouquet, onion, garlic clove, and peppercorns. Heat slowly until the first white foam appears. Remove from the heat at once; cover and let stand for 10 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the salt cod pieces to a paper towel-lined plate. Reserve the liquid for cooking the potatoes. Carefully remove any bones and hard skin; flake the flesh finely. Keep warm.

Meanwhile, cook the potatoes in the poaching water. Drain off the cooking liquid. (This broth can be used for a soup.) Dry the potatoes over low heat, then immediately mash them until smooth, using a ricer, a potato masher, or the wire beaters of an electric mixer. Beat in 2 Tbs of the walnut oil, the raw egg, and the chopped garlic. Beat until smooth. Keep warm.

Meanwhile, scald the remaining 3/4 cup milk in a small saucepan and heat the remaining walnut oil in a second saucepan.

Place the flaked cod and a little of the warm milk in a  food processor. Pulse on and off once. Gradually add the warmed oil and milk alternately, pulsing without overworking the cod. The mixture should feel light but still gritty. Scrape the fish into the mashed potatoes. Sieve the hard-boiled eggs into the mixture, then add the parsley. Gently but thoroughly mix until well-blended and light. Adjust the seasoning with white pepper and a few drops of vinegar or lemon juice to taste. Serve warm in a wide dish surrounded with the garlic toast triangles.

NOTE TO THE COOK
This spread can be made up to 6 hours in advance. If you do so, reserve a few tablespoons warm milk for reheating. Mix together over low heat.

CHEESE OF THE WEEK
Trois Laits $32.99 lb

From the remote Bethmale valley of the Pyrenees where cows, goats, and sheep are raised. As you can guess by the name, all three milks are combined in this rare version of Bethmale cheese. Roasted nuts & beefy notes with an herbaceous, almost oniony tang comes from the personality of each milk. Loves Banyuls or Muscat de Rivesalte.

NEW FLAVORS! 
Pok Pok Som Turmeric Drinking Vinegar 
Pok Pok Som Pomegranate Drinking Vinegar 

Pok Pok Som Thai Basil Drinking Vinegar 
$13.99 each
The latest addition to our Pok Pok drinking vinegars. Combine with sparkling water (6:1 ratio) and add a squeeze of lime for a refreshing non-alcoholic drink. I love the idea of combining them with coconut water. Try the Turmeric in a Masala Moonshine cocktail and the Thai Basil in a Gin Rickey.

JAJA: GREAT EVERYDAY DRINKERS 

Domaine le Clos des Lumieres Grenache Blanc 2013, Pays du Gard $7.99
This flirty little wine is the perfect house white. Fresh and floral, yet rich and round. Pair with an herb-roasted chicken or just enjoy this sunny day sipper on its own. How about ordering a case for your maison?

Vignerons de Saumur Les Pouches 2012, Saumur $9.99
Does the sunshine have you feeling springy? Pop open this delicious white. 100% unoaked Chenin Blanc from a coop devoted to making better wine at a lower cost. Clean & bright, meyer lemon & grapefruit, minerals with a touch of honey. Great with Asian food or chevre.

Les Heretiques 2013, VdP de’Herault $9.99
Winemaker Andre Iche inherited a 13th century castle & estate in Minervois. At first he sold to the local co-op, but a Burgundian winemaker tasted the wine and convinced him to bottle his production. 100% Carignan, of which 1/2 is fermented in barrel. Sweet cassis & raspberry jam, with a slightly rustic layer of spice and earth.

Domaine Borie de Maurel Esprit d’Automne 2012, Minervois $13.99
Winemaker Michel Escanle left a life of sailing behind to be inland with his wife. He borrowed money to buy 5 hectares, a wine cellar & an ageing house in the Languedoc. His vines cling to the rocky slopes of the Black Mountain. Scents of black olives & tobacco mingle with smooth morello cherries, mint and licorice. Pair with couscous for a southern French feast.

La Chaussynette 2011, Vin de France $14.99
This is the ‘estate secret’ of Chateauneuf house Mas de Boislauzon, at a third of the price. Brambly nose with raspberry, fig and kalamata olive notes. The rich fruit is magical with braised meat & lamb dishes.

Chateau Magneau Bordeaux Blanc 2012, Graves $15.99
“The biggest revolution has occurred in the quality of Graves dry white wines. Graves white are now more aromatic, fresh and well made; some of them with a distinctly exotic edge, with tropical fruit and a New World tang.” -The Bordeaux Atlas
This white Bordeaux comes from an ancient property run by the Ardurat family. Their philosophy is “quality before profit” and it shows. 10% Muscadelle provides an inviting bouquet, Semillon imparts ripe stonefruits and rich texture while the Sauvignon Blanc keeps things lively. Pair with halibut in a Beurre Blanc or sushi. 

Chateau Bourbon la Chapelle 2011, Medoc $16.99
A second property of Chateau Castera, one of the oldest vineyards in the Medoc.
85% Cab with 15% Merlot that spends 6 months in barrel. Black currants with tobacco & cedar, plus soft and silky tannins.

COLLECTOR’S CORNER

Roger Sabon Prestige 2012, Chateauneuf de Pape $84
“Older vine Grenache, which makes up 70% of the blend, holds the key here. The balance is shared between Syrah and Mourvèdre. Didier is pragmatic when it comes to élevage, using a combination of demi-muidbarrique and (mostly) foudre to match the specific requirements of the vintage. Accomplished and long, with plush fruit in the middle, this is an outstanding Prestige.”
Simon Field MW
93-95 points, Wine Advocate

Domaine Ferrand 2010, Chateauneuf de Pape $88
“This exotic red boasts notes of black truffles, roasted meats, charcuterie, incense, blackberries and black cherry liqueur intermixed with hints of roasted herbs and licorice. Full-bodied, dense and as concentrated as the estate’s extraordinary 2007, the spectacular 2010 needs 2-4 years of cellaring, and will age gracefully over the following two decades.” -96+ points, Robert Parker

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