Friday, March 7, 2014

Tartines from La Croix Rouge

Per Nana~
I have not had a tartine made with pain Poilâne, but I did have a 
croque monsieur, and there is nothing like it. Poilâne also makes 
wonderful croissants and I remember Tricia and I enjoying them for
 breakfast as we stayed in hotels nearby. 
This week's recipe was a bit of a challenge, but not because it was difficult.
 Jim does not eat smoked salmon and will not even consider rare roast beef. 
On top of that, I decided to give up bread for Lent (we'll see how far that goes)
 so I had to make this on Tuesday. 
At the deli counter I asked for a very small portion of roast beef and
 fortunately the salmon came in a small package. I used sourdough bread 
for the tartine, toasted under the broiler, and covering each with mayo or butter. 
I love capers and Cornichons, and each of these went very 
with the tartines. They turned out so delicious, I am not even 
ashamed to say that I ate them both for dinner.
Per Tricia~
While Dorie explains that the recipe's name refers to a Parisian café in her 
neighborhood, her discussions about "pain Poilâne" really got my attention.
  And brought back wonderful memories. 
I have eaten more croque monsieurs in Paris than I care to admit to, and
 gladly paid extra to have it served on the venerable bread from Poilâne. 
An early trip to that city and pilgrimage to 8 Rue du Cherche-Midi
 turned into a repeat event any time we are lucky enough to make it back. 
 I even bought a pillow at Restoration Hardware that had this street name 
emblazoned on it - and thought it was "such the find" .....
Close up of  Poilâne's charming door handle
 I am sorry to report however, that we have yet to make
 it to the attached "Cuisine de Bar" - the related and attached shop that
 sells tartines exclusively, in many varieties, on Poilâne bread. 
I'm a sucker for a vintage mini. Parked here, I couldn't resist. The well heeled elderly gentleman
who arrived in it (and whose younger blond nurse was driving...) was inside stuffing his
expensive blazer pockets with the free "punition" cookies when the clerk wasn't looking......
Clearly we need to get book a flight back there and remedy this oversight.  
Now, this week's "Around My French Table" tartines.
Deliciously easy, this week's tartines consisted of lightly toasting good quality
 hearty bread and topping one with rare roast beef, mayo and Cornichons 
while the second was treated to butter, salmon and capers. I purchased a
 dense loaf that I thought would be perfect (it was) at my favorite local
 bakery- le Bus, and topped per Dorie's instructions.
 No surprise on the recipe- the results were delicious.
 What was a surprise was my husband reporting that this is his "usual".
 I knew he liked roast beef but in going on 25 years of marriage, I never
 realized he ordered his with mayo AND pickles. That said, this combo
 from our local sub shop does not vaguely resemble the tartines created
 this week....but I still got a kick out of the revelation.
These shots are from the 2010 trip and lunch in a little café near
 the Bon Marché. Nana caught yours truly digging into one of the best
 lunches on record, which included the famed pain Poilâne. I actually
 have a photo of this sandwich at work. Enough said. 
Happy French Friday ~


  1. I want to accompany you on your next trip to Paris...lead me to that tartine, Tricia!!! Loved reading both your memories of your takes on these simple sandwiches :) Happy weekend!

    PS...Nana, I could never give up bread for Lent! Good luck with that...a true sacrifice :)

  2. You are lucky ladies to have actually been in the region where this originates from. I draw a blank on the geography! Both sets of tartines look wonderful, and I am not surprised you ate them both for dinner Nana.

  3. My husband thought I was insane when I stuffed a giant loaf of Poilane in my suitcase last October. (When weighed with all our wine and other souvenirs, and, oh, our clothes, we were totally over the weight limit, and were THOSE PEOPLE with their suitcases open all over the airport floor, moving stuff around and ultimately having to buy an extra bag's worth of weight. Oops.)

    Giving up bread for Lent? Ooph. Hard core.

    I love that you travel together! My mom is coming to visit for a month in April. I sure do hope we figure out how to travel together as nicely as you have. We operate at 2 discordant speeds, though, so it's going to be tricky.

  4. What fun pics and reminders of your trip! Funny that this is your husbands usual. :)

  5. Nana and Tricia: I really enjoy all the pictures in your wonderful post! I would love to taste the real Poilâne bread one day - from your descriptions it sounds like this kind of bread is worth travelling to Paris for. Hopefully we will make it to Paris at Easter...Your tartines look fabulous, all of them and I really like the round loaf of rustic/artisanal bread that you used for these open-faced sandwiches - how nice that we all seem to have enjoyed today´s "recipe", these really were delicious for lunch or dinner!
    Have a wonderful week!

  6. Nana - 3 days down, 37 to go. You seem to be well ahead of me, my husband and I are still arguing over what to give up for lent.

    And each time the two of you mention your adventures in Paris, I am more convinced that we are kindred travelers. I think we would have a great time hanging out together in the city of lights.

  7. Oh oh oh - this makes me yearn to be in France. I will toast all the Doristas tomorrow in Paris :)

  8. I love that you share the same memories of happy times in Paris. Sounds like a wonderful trip (trips?) And those husbands are full of surprises, aren't they? What did he think of your French version of his favorite hoagie?

  9. I'm glad both you ladies enjoyed these. Nana, I'm with yours on not liking smoked salmon but I thought the roast beef one was delicious! Good luck on Lent Nana. Bread would be a hard one. Tricia I love all your pictures. I've only been to Paris once but you are making me want to go back!

  10. Both of your posts look fantastic!

  11. Love both your posts and the write up on that wonderful trip!

  12. Oh the deli ! I don't eat beef and my husband does not eat fish so I wanted to get really small portions of both... but it did not strike me for a moment that I should check the local Deli. we kept hovering around aisles. In spite of being here for 4 yrs, I still do not know where to get what from :(

    Both your tartines look lovely. Love your pictures from Paris Tricia... love that close up of Poilâne's door handle. really charming.

  13. Wonderful, wonderful... France is the only country that pictures of bread are truly exciting. I don't think I've had Poilâne... my husband is an excellent bread baker, but water and flour are so different and different countries... may need to make a trip to France. Glad you both enjoyed this.

  14. Oh Ladies, You both did an exquisite job on your Tartines! And your photos of France are just lovely…I agree with Liz on giving up bread for Lent…I don’t think I could do it! I had to chuckle about the well heeled gentleman! Great post! Happy Weekend, to you both!!

  15. Your tartines look wonderful - and oh the memories!!!
    Nana, cudos on the bread-for-lent thing. I've decided on no "junk" bread this year (preferably homemade only), but that's really impressive. But did make for a nice Fat Tuesday meal!

  16. Both your tartines look lovely! Nana, I ate both of mine for dinner too!

  17. Clearly, you need to remedy not having visited that shop. And clearly, you need some company on that trip :-)

  18. The tartines look delicious. Love the pictures of France. Someday a trip to Paris for the French Friday's gang should be organized.

  19. Nana, can we talk? I am a Christian and card-carrying, God-fearing Episcopalian. What I know for sure is that God would NEVER expect me to give up bread. N-e-v-e-r. Maybe you should rethink that and give up something like, tapioca pudding or jicama sticks or sauerkraut. Those were my choices and I ended up with sacrificing jicama sticks for the next few weeks. (Well, it did put a smile on God's face). I so enjoy reading your and Tricia's accounts of your Paris excursions. I'm with Liz. Next time you two book that flight to Paris, I'd like to go along. You gals do know the best food sources. Every one of your photos this week is stunning - especially the pix where you threw in the M. jar and capers. I agree with you that this was fun and easy to eat and delicious.

  20. Nana and Tricia, your tartines are making me want to have these again! I love that you two have stories about (and photos of) pain Poilâne. Now, to get to Paris and sample it for myself...

  21. Tricia, I loved your story about the elderly man stuffing his pockets with free cookies. Too funny! Nana, I'm so impressed that you gave up bread for Lent. I don't think I could manage. You've both made me wish I could be in Paris eating pain Poilane.