Friday, March 25, 2011

2011: A Foodie Odyssey part 7: Fance, Pot Au Feu

France.  The word to me speaks of food.  It is a culinary destination for so many aspiring chefs and foodies alike.  My budget dose not allow me to travel at the moment so I decided to bring a little piece of France to my kitchen.  If your like me then you think most French food is over the top and a great deal of work or skill is required to prepare it.  That can be true, as with every other country in the world, but what about the average home maker?  Do you think they slave over Duck A L'Orange or fuss over Creme Brulee?  Heck no!  They are as busy as the rest of us.  Working.  Dropping the kids off at practice and countless other obligations.  The recipes we are accustomed seeing are not the average home dinner.  That is why it's on your favorite celebrity chef's show, or restaurants menu.  It is special and dose take skill and that's what makes it interesting to watch.

I found lots of simple home recipes.  Pot A Feu, or Pot of Fire, was one that caught my eye for two reasons.  Reason one was simple enough, it was the style I was looking for.  It is known as a peasant food with a long history, right up my alley!  Reason two is that it is similar to the Rippli recipe I used for Switzerland.  I thought it was interesting to see two variations of a similar dish from two different countries.

Here is What You'll Need:

3 pounds of beef with bone in (beef spare ribs are what I used)
11 ounces of bacon (cut in thirds)
10 peal onions
3 cloves of garlic chopped
4 medium carrots peeled and cut into cubes or sliced
2 leeks cut into rounds
5 tomatoes diced
1 cup beef stock
all purpose flour
sea salt to taste
black pepper to taste

Season the beef and brown over medium heat. 
You want a good color and caramelization, this is where your flavor is!  Sprinkle lightly with flour and turn as needed.  Place the beef in a slow cooker and move on.

 Fry the bacon, onions, garlic, and carrots.  Cook until bacon is just under done.  Add the tomatoes and leeks along with the beef stock. 

Bring to a boil then add the mixture to the slow cooker with the ribs and let cook on low for about 5 hours.
Plate, or bowl rather and serve!

So so so easy!  It was very good to but rich.  I loved it!  You can cook it ahead of time, chill and remove the oil from the top when it solidifies but I went for the full affect!  It was so good and flavorful I had a hard time not eating it all.  In comparison to the Swiss version it held it's own.  Though it did not have a wine base for the soup it was still packed with flavor.  I love the leeks in the mix as I have just discovered a new affinity for them. 

All in all I hope that you have learned that not all French cooking is for the pros!  This was an easy one to throw together and move on to chores as it simmers to perfection! 

Scotland is next up followed by Estonia on 2011: A Foodie Odyssey!  Don't forget to vote for the next country on the top of the page.

I have some exciting news as well.  I will be having two of my favorite bloggers doing a guest post on Wichita Falls Foodie!  They are both very talented and crafty women who feature homemaking tips, crafts, food, and lots of other cool features.  It will be a good chance for you to get a glimpse of some other talented bloggers and see who I draw some inspiration from!  The buttons are for the respective blogs, give them a peek!

Love Food, Live Life!


  1. After you sent me the link to this yesterday, I HAD to make it !
    Everything is in the crock pot, & I must say- the house smells AMAZING!
    I can't wait for this to be done !
    Will let you know how it comes out!

  2. Thanks for stopping by and giving it a go!!! It was one of my favorites so far. Hope it turns out well for you!!!
    Love Food, Live Life!