Eiffel Tower, Paris, France
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A Bastille Day (July 14) Menu (cont.)



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“It was in France that I first learned about food. And that even the
selection of a perfect pear, a ripe piece of Brie, the freshest butter,
the highest quality cream were as important as how the dish you
were going to be served was actually cooked.”

~ Robert Carrier

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 The Bastille Prison, 14th July 1789
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Revolutionary Text "Unite, Indivisibilite de La Republic Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite Ou La Morte."
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The Taking of the Bastille, 14th July 1789
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La Belle Cuisine


"Allons enfants de la Patrie
Le jour de gloire est arrivé!"
~ 'La Marseillaise'



A Bastille Day Menu (cont.)

Recipe Source:

Simply French
© 1991 by Patricia Wells and Joël Robuchon
William Morrow/HarperCollins

First Course:
Marinated Mushroom Salad
Fish Entrée:
Roasted Monkfish with Tomatoes,
Zucchini, Lemon, and Thyme

Meat Entrée:
Charcoal-Broiled Halved Chicken
with Hot Mustard

Side Dish:
The "Upper Crust" Potato Gratin (below)
Peaches and Strawberries in
Pink Champagne (below)


The "Upper Crust" Potato Gratin
(Le Gratin des Gratins)

“I am sure that if you polled a hundred Frenchmen, each one would have a
strong opinion on the ‘best’ potato gratin. Well, for me the ‘best’ is the last
great potato gratin I sampled. This recipe brings up the ever-present question
of ‘to wash or not to wash.’ There are those who believe that all potatoes
should be rinsed of starch, which on its own does not have a pleasing flavor.
Others enjoy the earthiness the starch imparts. Since you’re the cook, you
can have it your way. Or try the recipe both ways and see which is closer
to your own taste.”

Equipment: One oval baking dish (about 9 x 13 inches)

3 pounds baking potatoes, such as Idaho Russets
1 quart whole milk
Bouquet garni: several parsley stems, celery
leaves, and sprigs of thyme, wrapped in
the green part of a leek and securely
fastened with cotton twine
Freshly grated nutmeg to taste
Sea salt to taste
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups freshly grated imported Gruyère cheese
Freshly ground white pepper to taste
1 plump fresh garlic clove, halved lengthwise

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Peel and thinly slice the potatoes. If desired, rinse the potatoes to rid
them of starch. Dry thoroughly in a thick towel.
3. In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes, milk, bouquet garni, nutmeg,
salt, and 1 tablespoon of the butter, and bring to boil over modately
high heat. Stir occasionally to prevent the potatoes from sticking to
the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat to moderate and cook, stirring
occasionally, until the potatoes are tender but not falling apart, about
10 minutes.
4. Prepare the topping: In a medium-size bowl, combine 1/2 cup of the
cream and 1 cup of the cheese, and stir to blend. Set aside.
5. Rub the bottom of the baking dish with the garlic and the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. With a slotted spoon, transfer half the potatoes to
the baking dish. Sprinkle with additional nutmeg, pepper, the remain-
ing 1/2 cup cream, and the remaining 1 cup cheese. Cover with the
remaining potatoes and sprinkle again with nutmeg and pepper. Cover
with the reserved topping. Discard the milk and the bouquet garni.
6. Place the baking dish in the center of the oven and bake until the
potatoes are crisp and golden on top, about 1 hour. Serve
Yield: 6 to 8 servings

A Touch of Garlic
To some cooks, the idea of rubbing a baking dish with a halved clove of garlic,
then discarding the garlic, seems like a waste of time. The trick is to rub the
bottom of the dish vigorously and thoroughly, so that the clove of garlic all but
falls apart and seems to disappear, totally impregnating the baking dish with
its essence. As the gratin bakes, the garlic gently flavors the potatoes and milk,
adding that essential touch of extra seasoning.


Peaches and Strawberries in
Pink Champagne

(Salade de Pêches et Fraises au Champagne Rosé)

“A superbly festive dessert, this dish sings of summer and the sun. The
combination of peaches, strawberries and pink Champagne is elegant,
colorful, and rich. Of course, you won’t want to use your best vintage
Champagne here, but don’t skimp either.”

3 1/4 cups sugar
1 quart water
8 ounces strawberries, hulled
3 peaches
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 bottle pink Champagne, chilled
Fresh mint leaves, for garnish

1. Prepare the syrup: In a saucepan, combine the sugar with the 1 quart
water and bring to a boil over high heat. Whisk constantly until boiling.
Boil without whisking of 1 minute. Set aside to cool.
2. Prepare the fruit: Quarter the strawberries lengthwise and place them
in a large bowl. Peel the peaches and cut in half. Remove and discard
the pit, and cut each half into 4 equal slices. Place the peaches in the
bowl with the strawberries, add the lemon juice and syrup, and toss
gently to combine. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour to
allow the flavors to blend.
3. To finish, remove the peach and strawberry mixture from the refrig-
erator. With a slotted spoon, divide the fruit among 6 large shallow
Champagne coupes, allowing about 1 tablespoon of syrup in each
4. Just before serving, uncork the Champagne and pour enough into
each glass to just cover the fruit. Garnish with mint and serve.
Yield: 6 servings

We encourage you to consider accompanying this delectable fruit cup with
 Julia Child's
Tuiles aux Amandes.

A Bastille Day Menu, page 1
A Bastille Day Menu, page 2

Suggestions from our Archives:
Artichokes (and/or other vegetables)
with Anchoïade

Goat Cheese with Herbed Olive Oil
Goat Cheese with Bell Pepper Dressing

Pâté d'Aubergine Provençale
Ratatouille Dip
Beef Tenderloin Roasted in an
Herb-Infused Salt Crust

Salmon en Papillote  (Julia & Jacques)
Pork Tenderloin with Sautéed Onion,
Fennel and Fennel Cream

Herb-Roasted Chicken (Alain Ducasse)
French Potato Salad (Jacques Pépin)
Tarragon Green Bean Salad (Patricia Wells)
Oven-Roasted Vegetable Casserole
(Daniel Boulud)

Clafoutis aux Cerises Mulot
Gâteau Basque (François Payard)
Tarte au Citron Nézard
(World's Best Lemon Tart)

Madeleines (Chocolatier)
Trao-Mad with Peach Compote
(Daniel Boulud)

Tuiles aux Amandes (Julia Child)


More Lagniappe Recipes
Index - Bastille Day Recipes

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