Baguettes, brioche, croissants, pain complet, etc. We eat a lot of bread.
So I was looking to make something a little less carb-focused last week. I was flipping through our go-to French cookbook (described here) looking for a little inspiration and came across a beautiful dish called Chou Farçi. This means stuffed cabbage, but that doesn’t sound as elegant so we will refer to it by its French name. Chou Farçi is a layered cabbage and meat dish, which brings me to the other important reason for making this dish. It would finally compel us to go to a boucherie for the first time, a place we have been intimidated by for a while.
We went to Guilhien Jean-Bernard (82 Rue du Bac 75007) and purchased 300g of ground beef and 300g of ground pork. And as has been our experience so far, the employees were very nice to us as we stumbled through our French and explaining that no, we didn’t want the pre-mixed version they already had. About three other people came in or left while we were there, and the rapport people have with these butchers is really amazing. We have a long way to go before that ever happens, but nevertheless, we have been slowly working through specialty shops, and visiting a butcher was a key milestone.
As usual, I didn’t strictly follow the recipe. I’d say I “adapted” it, but that sounds a bit more thoughtful than what I typically do. I eliminate, switch, and add ingredients according to my whims and what is available. And it usually works out. This time, it sort of worked out.
The end result didn’t turn out visually anywhere close to the pretty pictures in the cookbook (I’m still going to show it to you). But, luckily, it tasted much better than it looked. And after a meal that’s a little more figure- and budget- friendly, it seemed only appropriate that we wrap up dinner with a glass of Côtes du Rhône at a cafe down the street.