The Lou Messugo Blog - life in the south of France from a British/Australian TCK's perspective, bringing you French culture, travel on the Côte d'Azur and beyond, expat issues and a little bit of je ne sais quoi all mixed up with a hefty dose of photography.

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Top 8 must-try foods from Provence

Posted by on in Food & Drink

A significant part of any visitor’s time in Provence Côte d'Azur is likely to be taken up by food. Whether you’re eating in restaurants or cooking for yourself, either way you’re sure to find you spend a serious amount of time savouring and delighting in the wealth of fresh produce and local specialities.   Long lazy lunches on a shady terrace, with the sound of cicadas chirping, washed down with plenty of chilled rosé is one of the things Provence is all about.  Visiting markets and choosing your sun-ripened fruit and veg, golden olive oil, fresh goats cheese and local saucisson is another must do.  With this in mind I thought I’d put together a list of 8 Provençal dishes any visitor to Provence Côte d'Azur has just got to try.

favourite dishes from Provence

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3 of the best snacks from Nice

Posted by on in Food & Drink

Salade Niçoise, meaning salad from Nice, is served in restaurants all over the world making it undoubtedly the most famous of the local gastronomic specialities from the Côte d'Azur, but have you heard of my Top 3 snacks?  When visiting the French Riviera you've just got to try them.

Socca

  socca nice tour

A large chickpea crêpe, cooked on a copper dish about a metre wide in a wood-fired oven, consisting of chickpea flour, olive oil, salt and water.  While cooking, the flames should just lick the surface without grilling it too much; there's an art to perfecting this delicious pancake.  It should be very thin and slightly burnt on the top.  Socca is served in little scrapings, piping hot with lots of pepper and ideally a glass of cold rosé!

Pan-Bagnat

  pan-bagnat

A great big round bread roll, stuffed with tuna, tomato, onion, basil, slices of hard boiled egg, anchovy, radish, green pepper, black olives and plenty of olive oil - basically a salad niçoise in bread.  The name comes from Italian pane bagnato meaning wet bread, which indicates just how much olive oil should be used - loads!  Don't expect to look elegant when eating this delight; you'll have oil dripping everywhere. Great for eating on the beach - just jump in the sea to rinse off when you've finished.

Pissaladière

 pissaladiere

This unfortunately named dish (to English ears) often doesn't look great either, but trust me, it tastes wonderful.  The name comes from "peis salats" which means anchovy purée in Nissart, giving a clue as to one of the ingredients.  It is infact a sort of onion and anchovy tart.  It consists of a  base made of a reasonably thick, and very soft, bread-like dough topped with a generous covering of lightly caramelised onions that should melt in the mouth.  Some people add whole anchovy filets on top, others spread anchovy paste on the base before adding the onions.  Both versions are authentic and delicious. Pissaladière is dotted with black olives and can be served cold or warm but not hot.

                    socca seller

You can find Pan-Bagnat and Pissaladière in boulangeries and snack bars all over the Côte d'Azur but Socca is less widely available.  Sellers using a traditional oven are located mainly in the old town of Nice, at markets in nearby towns (Antibes every morning is a good example) and at village fêtes.

For more about food from Nice you might enjoy A gastronomic tour of Nice.

 

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