Travelling and food are intrinsically linked for me. When I think of different countries I often associated them with certain foods, smell and tastes. Here are a few of our discoveries this summer:
Snowballs: It’s been unbelievably hot here. The kind of heat that makes you feel like you’re going to melt in the afternoon if you venture too far from a pool or museum. We’ve discovered snowballs and snowball stands–little sheds selling shaved ice doused in different flavors with a cheap plastic spoon to scoop it all up. Heaven in the heat! Oh, and did I mention that they’re cheap too! Unlike another one of our discoveries…
Ice Cream with Things in It: Fear not, France has ice cream and some very good ice cream too! (If you’re in Saint Malo or Dinard, you must try the Glaces Sanchez.) France is also home to my favorite way to eat ice cream–profiteroles ie puff pastry meets ice cream meets chocolate sauce and whipped cream, a decadent combination if ever there was one! This summer, however, we’ve been enjoying an American twist on ice cream. Ice cream flavors with all sorts of goodies smooshed in–brownies, cookie dough, nuts, gummy bears, the list and calories go on…
Corn on the Cob: We certainly eat sweet corn at home but eating it straight off the cob turns it into a treat and a novelty for the girls. Laura and Elise still can’t believe they’re allowed to eat corn right off the cob this summer.
Pulled Pork: Pork butt rubbed in spices and slow-cooked for hours. Thank you Fourth of July festivities for letting us get to know southern barbecue a bit better. Eaten at a picnic with fireworks, pulled pork tastes even better.
Maryland Steamed Crabs: Messy, smelly (in a good way), burn your fingers hot! We’re used to Dungeness crabs in Brittany. Normally, we eat them cold after they’ve been cooked. While the crab picking techniques seem to be the same, everything else is different. Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs are smaller crabs. We went to a crab shack to try them out. The crabs are steamed with copious amounts of Old Bay and dumped steaming hot on your table along with mallets to help get the claws open. We couldn’t pick them fast enough for the girls.
Cheesecake, Chocolate Chip Cookies and Brownies: Globalization is such that all three of these goodies can be found in France. Our local supermarket sells both chocolate chip cookies and brownies. I should have put all that in quotes, what we’ve eaten at bakeries here makes the stuff on sale at our supermarket taste like a different dessert. There is no comparison. The cookies, brownies and cheesecake here are to die for…I might have to buy a few cookbooks to take home with me!