Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Midnight in Paris

I love a night out with the girls....such a great opportunity for a "girl's movie",  great food eaten to live music by 3 cute  guys with great voices,  conversations about art, painting, painters, paint (all things painting!) Last Wednesday night we had just that....6 of us, all Somerset Ridge Painters. We met at Trezo Mare in Leawood, sat  outside on the Patio, listened to some great music, ate Fish Tacos, Mussels, Crab Cakes and drank some mighty fine beverages. And the chef came out to meet me and made me some  very special treats!
We laughed, we covered many subjects from painting, Art in the Vines, to the cute guys in the band!

But next came the best part.....the movie..... Midnight in Paris.

Now, I know it is not a major contender for an Academy Award, but it was so much fun!  I don't want to spoil it for anyone, so I am not going to write a review of it, but the general idea is, Gil, Owen Wilson's character, moves through Paris, after midnight,  going back in time to the 20s....meeting such notables as Hemmingway,  Gertrude Stein, the Fitzgeralds.....and an array of famous painters. The personalities of these people were so clear, and from what I've read of  them, right on. It was such fun! It was so easy to put yourself right there with them. And, as Gil walked around Paris in the rain, I had to agree with him..."Paris is the most beautiful in the rain."
So, here I have been on a "Paris High" for the last few days. In my searching the internet, I have found a book that I must have....today. Barnes and Noble is holding it for me, I will pick it up tonight! It is by John Baxter....The Most Beautiful Walk in the World: A Pedestrian in Paris [Paperback]. I'll let you know how it is.
I must read more Hemmingway....more Fitzgerald....I must study more Picasso, more Matisse! Oh, and I mustn't forget Cole Porter's music! What a era!
If you want to know more about this Woody Allen movie, go to  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/28/movies/midnight-in-paris-a-historical-view.html
I hope you have a chance to see the film....it is so much fun!

Okay, so now we need something French to eat, right? How about a Bacon Tart? Great for brunch, lunch, light supper and as an appetizer. I found it on www.frenchfood.about.com This bacon tart recipe is for the classic Alsatian specialty, flammekuche, or tarte flamme. Rolling the dough cracker-crisp thin and baking it in a super hot oven is the key to attaining the crunchy texture and caramelized onion topping that makes this tart famous.

French Bacon Tart    
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
8 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cold water
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/3 cup creme fraiche
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 large onion, thinly sliced
6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Using a food processor, pulse the flour, butter, and salt until it has a coarse, sandy texture with a few pea-size bits of butter remaining. Stir the cold water into the flour mixture just until the dough pulls together into a shaggy ball. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 2 hours, or until it is cold.
Preheat the oven to 425F. Roll the dough into an 8-inch by 12-inch rectangle on a lightly greased baking sheet. Stir the ricotta cheese, creme fraiche, flour, and salt until it is smooth. In a separate bowl, toss the sliced onions in the oil and sugar.
Spread the cheese mixture over the surface of the dough, and then arrange the onions and bacon over the cheese. Bake the bacon tart for 15 to 20 minutes, until the dough is golden brown and the onions caramelize.
This bacon tart recipe makes 4 to 6 servings.
And, of course, a Reisling wine, such as Somerset Ridge's version of the famous Alsatian wine, would be perfect!

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