Our group was invited to have lunch at the home of cookbook author Susan Hermann Loomis on rue Tatin in the village of Louviers in Normandy. On our way there, we stopped at a gas station, which is not exactly like the Petro Canada stations at home. You can buy ridiculously overpriced North American candy (Malteesers for almost 7 euros) and my personal favourite: a laminated map of the kings of France (yes this baby is following me home).
The tiny village of Louviers is very charming, with beautiful architecture and a large church in the centre of town, that is kept at a rather cold temperature inside and is a tad on the eerie side. Susan Hermann Loomis’ home on the other hand, is picture perfect and she has a kitchen to die for.
We began with a tasting of a variety of oils. Of course my favourites happened to include one that is made from the nut inside the pit of a plum. Not exactly something readily available at the grocery store, but nevertheless good stuff. We continued with a tasting of chocolates and I’ve come to the conclusion that cocoa nibs are downright bitter, nasty stuff.
Lunch included fantastic local produce, including fresh asparagus, carrots and onions, as well as roasted chicken with aioli and salad with a mixture of nut oils for dressing. This was followed by a fantastic cheese course. Since I have less brain capacity than a Timbit, I can’t recall the names of the cheeses, but I’ve included a photo of their pretty, milky goodness. This was followed by strawberry sorbet and creme fraiche – miam miam… And afterwards, my stomach exploded from all the food – just kidding, but not too far from the truth!
Keep your fingers crossed I can still fit into my pants by the end of the week…