Holidays in France are a great experience. A new culture and great food and wine. But it can become expensive. We use our apartment a lot, so have made sure there is plenty of cooking equipment for all of your needs. Especially after a busy day out, you may not feel like changing and going out to find a restaurant. Grab a few things from the village butcher or supermarket before you settle in for the evening and try one of the local specialities. There’s couple of recipes in our book next to the microwave you can try, or add one of your own. Oreilles d’Ane is a popular local dish with cheese and spinach. (Recipe below).
If you don’t feel like cooking yourself, there’s also the option of ready prepared meals. the butcher usually has a daily special. Maybe you could just grab some bread, cheese and wine for a lovely simple supper. You can enjoy it on the terrace in summer or in the cosy warmth of the apartment during the winter. No need to brave the cold nights.
Oreille D’Ane (for 4 people)
400g Spinach leaves. Wash in water and wilt in a covered pan. Drain thoroughly and squeeze out water before chopping finely.
Pancake batter :-(if you’re feeling really lazy buy some lasagne sheets instead. If they are dried ones, soak in water for a couple of miinutes to soften.)
240g flour, pinch salt, 2 eggs, 1tbsp oil, 500ml fresh milk.
Make into a batter and leave to stand for half an hour. Make into 6-8 thin pancakes in a frying pan. (you may have too much batter, in which case, cover the jug and leave in the fridge for breakfast pancakes-just add a little sugar and lemon).
40g flour, 40g butter, 400ml fresh milk, 1 egg yolk.
Melt butter in a saucepan over a medium high heat, add the flour and mix together until it looks like a honeycomb. Stir in the milk off the heat a little at a time and bring to the boil to form a smooth sauce. Simmer gently, stirring regularly for 5 minutes to cook the flour. Season with salt and pepper and some freshly grated nutmeg. Take off the heat and add the egg yolk. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes.
Add half of the Spinach to the white sauce, add some sauce to each pancake, and roll up. Cut each pancake into 4 pieces and put into the bottom of a buttered baking dish.
Spoon the remaining spinach and sauce , 100g creme fraiche, 100g grated gruyere cheese and 2 tbsps fresh breadcrumbs over the top of the pancakes. YOu can omit the breadcrumbs if you wish, but I think it gives it a nice crunch.
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes at 210c. Leave to stand for 5-10 minutes before serving with fresh crusty bread and some thick sliced mountain ham.