Far from perfect but still pretty good
Over the winter I picked up a copy of Joël Robuchon's Tout Robuchon. It is kind of laid-out as one of those "if you only have one cookbook in your kitchen, it should be this one" books. It is page after page of French classics - a type of encyclopedia of modernized traditional dishes. I figured I couldn't go wrong with that, so I bought it even though there isn't a single picture in it.
The first recipe I made out of it confirmed my good judgment. I used Robuchon's quiche base to make a porcini, spinach, bacon quiche. It was heaven. I have never had such good quiche in my entire life. There was nothing watery or curd-like about it. It came out firm and custardy. In fact, it was so delicious that I barely even thought about all the cream that went into baking it.
The Far Breton was my next stop and it left me asking for more. A far is a traditional dessert from Brittany and its batter is a cross between a flan and a clafouti and is often garnished with prunes. A good far is better than good. The prunes baked into the eggy base are soft and sweet and comforting. I admit that I didn't follow the recipe to the letter because I didn't have any prunes but I was still pretty disappointed with the rather lifeless base. I did however, manage to polish off the thing but I don't think I'll be making it again.
With a tied score - one good recipe to one not so good recipe - the only thing left to do is to keep the test-kitchen fires burning. Next on the list is Robuchon's famous purée and I have a feeling it will be just as good as at the Atelier.
Far Breton adapted from by Joël Robuchon
140 grams flour
120 grams sugar
4 eggs + 1 yolk
25 cl milk
25 cl heavy cream
1 tablespoon dark rum
optional : 200 grams prunes or two medium apples
Generously butter a square baking dish or individual ramekins. In a large bowl combine the flout (sifted) with the sugar. Form a well and add the eggs and yolk. Beat with an electric mixture until the batter is silky and then add in the milk and cream little by little. Finish off by adding the rum. Pour the batter into the molds and then add prunes, sliced apples etc.
Bake at 180° C (350° F) for 30 minutes