3 TINY, TASTY, AMUSES-BOUCHES

A cube of crusty French country bread topped with an olive oil-drenched roasted garlic clove, a demi-cherry tomato and a freshly picked tarragon leaf from my window sill.

Finally, it all makes sense… live to taste, taste to live. Little simple bites of splendor before a meal, or just comme ça, disappear in my mouth which turns into a satisfied smile. Get creative, search the cupboards and the fridge… here is the beginning of one early evening in July..

the bread

Bastien and I ride our bikes to a nearby organic market once every fortnight and buy this bread from a lady who grows her wheat, grinds it into flour, kneads it with water and yeast into dough, and cooks it in a wood burning old stone oven. Needless to say, it’s good bread.

the roasted garlic

When you cook something in the oven for 20 minutes or more, throw a few cloves of garlic (unpeeled) on a dish, sprinkle with olive oil, and let them roast until soft. Afterwards, you can peel them and eat them whole, or spread the garlic paste on bread…mix into pasta…etc… They also refrigerate well. There are often people who sell just garlic at the street markets here, so my garlic is always from one of these local farmers

the recipe for tarragon-topped roasted-garlic appetizer:

Slice some French bread into thick cubes. Drizzle with just a splash of olive oil. Top with a clove of roasted garlic (as explained above) and half of a cherry tomato on a toothpick. Wrap a tarragon leaf around the toothpick and serve.

A local sweet cherry tomato opens to a dab of goat’s cheese, a twinkle of black olive tapenade, and a sprinkle of balsamic vinegar.

on eating local:

I’m happy to see that eating local is in recently. It’s the theme of a number of posts online. It’s the “challenge” on many food aficionado blogs. Most of my dishes are partly, mostly, or completely local, and usually organic, officially or not. Here, the bread, garlic, tomato, tarragon, goat’s cheese, and cucumber are local. Look out soon for a post on the local products that I’m lucky enough to bring home on my bike.

Mini sake martinis refresh the palette

recipe for mini sake martinis:

Freeze small shot glasses. Thinly slice a cucumber into rounds and fill with goat’s cheese or cottage cheese. Roll and stab onto a toothpick with a green olive. Pour the cold sake (Japanese rice wine) into the ice-cold glasses, top with garnish, and serve immediately.

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