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12 Foods You Must Eat in Southwest France

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

If you are a salivating traveler heading to the Southwest of France you are in the right spot. Mathieu, my significant other, and a native to the area, has helped me come up with a list of the most foodgasmic cuisines you can find. Brace yourself fellow anglophones, because these dishes are about to rock your waistline. 

1. Pipérade
photo credit: curebybacon.wordpress.com
Pipérade is a traditional recipe of the Basque Country. A yummy mix of Spanish and French cultures that is perfect for any vegetarian! Its main ingredients are onions, green peppers, tomatoes, and red peppers. Find the recipe here.

2. Brandade de Morue
photo credit: lesfoodies.
A dish that has actually originated from Languedoc and Provence, however it is found all throughout the Southwest. Brandade de morue is greatly appreciated by fish lovers! It is a mix of potatoes, olive oil, and cod fish. Find the recipe here.

3. Cannelés Bordelais
After living in Bordeaux, I can wholeheartedly tell you that cannelés are a huge hit. It is a simple vanilla and rum pastry that creates a little piece of dessert heaven. You will only find the best of the best in Bordeaux itself (the most delicious cannelés are at the Sunday markets!) Find the recipe here.

4. Cassoulet
photo credit: allies.fr
Mathieu LOVES cassoulet. It originates from his area of Toulouse, as well as Carcassonne (both are cities worth visiting). A variety of meats can be used in cassoulet such as goose, duck, pork, or beef. As long as it's cooked with white beans you are good to go! Find the recipe here.

 5. Poulet Basquaise
photo credit: actualities.brithotel.fr
This is by far one of the most popular chicken dishes in France (you won't find too many). Another foodie's dream that comes from the basque country. Cooked like a casserole, this plate consists of tomatoes, peppers, chicken, garlic, and onions. Find the recipe here.

6. Les Cèpes
photo credit: foie-gras-godard.fr
The best place to find les cèpes, a type of mushroom, are in the Dordogne region and the Lot-et-Garonne region. They can be cooked in olive oil with some salt to taste and voilà, they're done! Unfortunately for anyone not visiting the country, there is no way to make this one.

7. Magret de Canard
photo credit: dianeyoon.wordpress.com
Duck is such a big part of the Southwestern food culture. You will see duck farms EVERYWHERE. If this is a food that sparks your appetite, then it is the best region of France to find it. Magret is a filet coming from the chest of the duck, cooked fairly rare. Find how to cook the duck breast here.

8. Pain Perdu
photo credit: hervecuisine.com
Pain Perdu translates to "lost bread." Why? Because the stale bread, once lost and alone, has now found its way to our stomachs again! The French do not cook "french toast," like we do. It is not meant to be doused in syrup, nor smothered in Nutella. However, adding a little ice cream on the side is acceptable (and delectable!). This dish should be eaten as DESSERT in the Southwest; so if you are out to find pain perdu for breakfast, you better expect some crazy looks! Find the recipe here.

9. Pot Au Feu
photo credit: matvpratique.com
Pot au feu is such a simple, yet incredible French dish. It can be eaten all-at-once or in separate courses. Mathieu's family serves the dish first with the vegetables, followed by the meat. Boiled veggies, veal, and beef are all it takes to make a traditional French cuisine that has been around since the 17th century. Find the recipe here.

10. Foie Gras
photo credit: seriouseats.com
There is no better place to go than the Southwest of France if you are looking for foie gras. It is a a delicacy of the country, who is the top producer in the world. Foie gras is better known as duck liver, and can be cooked or made into a pâté. It begins with the feeding of the duck, so your best bet is to head to France to find this one!

photo credit: chefdamien.750g.com
Tourin is simply known as garlic soup, and is another easy, do-it-yourself French plate. I'm considering making this one myself because it is making me über hungry. Find the recipe here.

12. Tourtière Aux Pommes
This photo comes straight off of the kitchen table. Mathieu's mom brought this over and it was SO good. A tasty, Toulousain dessert. As you can see it is a bit difficult, even in the design of the cake. However, if you are a fan of Armagnac alcohol, it is worth making! There are not many recipes in English for this one, so you are better off using a French site and translating it through Google: find it here

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