French Summer Menu Try A Taste of le Sud with Friends
Our 2022 summer menu comes from Emma Kershaw, who lives in the South of France near the Spanish border. Start the evening with a savoury octopus pie from Sète, followed by a chilled soup, then the Catalan variation of fish stew and a sweet fruit finish.
In June 2016, several French administrative regions amalgamated to achieve service and staffing efficiencies. One such change was Languedoc-Roussillon, the area that shares borders with Provence and Spain. It is now part of Occitanie. Incorporating the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean coastline, it is one of France’s major wine-producing areas. This is where Emma Kershaw and her family established La Maison du Rire (the House of Laughter), a wine and food school in Corbières. An author of two cookbooks and an accredited wine expert, Emma agreed to curate our French Summer Menu for 2022 with recipes from her book A Taste of Le Sud – A collection of recipes and wine pairings.
“Good food and wine should be celebrated, enjoyed together amongst friends and family.”~Emma Kershaw
For me, summer here in the South of France is all about fresh vegetables and abundant seafood.
Nibbles with Drinks:
Tielle Setoise are spicy octopus pies brought to the region by the Italian immigrants; make them bite-sized or the size of a large pizza!
Tomatoes are bursting with flavour and need to be celebrated, in my opinion! Gazpacho should only be made with only the freshest and ripest fruit and plenty of herbs. It is refreshing and light, perfect for the hot balmy summer days.
Zarzuela is a classic dish that feeds the crowds, served in enormous pans in all of the local markets.
Strawberries in the summer are full of sweetness and perfume; this is the simplest of desserts. Serve chilled alongside my almond cake.
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Emma Kershaw Bio
“Life is too short to drink bad wine and not be laughing!”
In 2010, Emma Kershaw and her family moved to Corbières, creating La Maison du Rire, a food and wine school out of an old, dilapidated winery. For many years, Emma has taught individuals and professionals about the world of wine, from beginner level to Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Diploma. She has also worked with many chefs and restaurateurs on wine and food pairings.
At La Maison du Rire, there is a focus on the wines and the gastronomy of Occitanie. Here, under Emma’s guidance, students explore a wide range of courses about the wines and foods of this incredibly diverse region. It is one of the largest wine regions in the world with an incredible range of grape varieties, from indigenous to classic, a diversity of climate, soil, topography and the people creating the wines.
Emma’s recipes are so popular that many people asked her to create a cookbook, and now she has two books: A Taste of Le Sud and The Day Louis Was Eating / Le jour où Louis mangeait. The books are available in English or French, and the recipes are a combination of originals and her take on some classic dishes. Each recipe has a wine match chosen from the vast range of wines in the Languedoc-Roussillon.
Get in Touch with Emma
Facebook page: La Maison du Rire