My Summer Menu from Provence
Enjoy the Relaxed Season
Summer is a wonderful time of year in Provence, with blue skies everywhere and brilliant sunflowers and lavender in bloom. My favourite time of day is the early evening when the heat of the day is past and you can look forward to a long, lazy meal.
Even if you are not in Provence right now, here’s a menu that will bring the flavours of the region to you. We start with a refreshing aperitif, move on to an appetizer and a main dish, and finish with a cool and refreshing dessert. I’ve chosen some of my favourite dishes, all very Provençal, and I hope you’ll enjoy them.
Start with a Drink:
You see people drinking rosé all over Provence in the summertime. On a hot day, some even add ice cubes to their drink! Here’s a recipe that adds some bubbles a refreshing rosé spritz.
Nibbles with Cocktails:
What shall we have to go along with our rosé spritz? Let’s try panisse, that crunchy/salty chickpea fritter that’s so popular in Provence. It’s a great way to wake up the appetite! It’s delicious and, for our friends who have trouble eating wheat, it’s entirely gluten-free.
You may already be familiar with aïoli, that fragrant garlicky mayonnaise. It’s the centrepiece of Le Grand Aïoli—a big bowl of aïoli surrounded by fish, potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, and seasonal vegetables. There’s no better time to have it than in the summer when the markets are full of fresh vegetables bursting with flavour.
France is a Catholic country and traditionally Catholics ate fish on Friday. The good people of Provence, who love their garlic and appreciate the gifts of the land, added this bounty to their fish to make Le Grand Aïoli, still the traditional Friday meal in the region.
Nougat is a popular French treat and the best version comes from Montélimar, a charming town at the northern tip of Provence. Here’s a recipe for a cool, refreshing frozen nougat, a perfect way to end a meal on a warm summer day.
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