To say that you are spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing a dessert in France, is a bit of an understatement. You could have a Creme Brulee consisting of a rich custard base topped with a contrasting layer of hard caramel. Or how about a floating Island or île flottante as the French like to call it; a dessert consisting of meringue floating on crème anglaise (a vanilla custard). The meringues are prepared from whipped egg whites, sugar and vanilla extract then quickly poached. The crème anglaise is prepared with the egg yolks, vanilla, and hot milk, briefly cooked. A Tart Tatin is another favourite which is an upside-down tart in which the fruit (usually apples) are caramelized in butter and sugar before the tart is baked.
Creme Brulee Ile Flottante Tart Tatin
Of course, being France the home of great food, the lists of desserts is endless, trying to decide which one to choose is a tough challenge as the waiter is hovering about waiting to take your order. In fact they all seem so tasty that it would be nice to try them all, or even a few favourites. Luckily the clever French have a solution to your dessert dilemma, entitled a Cafe Gourmand. Apparently The first “café gourmand” is believed to have appeared in restaurants in Paris around 2005, it normally consists of four different desserts and an espresso coffee. While there is no set rules for the composition of a “café gourmand”, the desserts most commonly included are chocolate mousse, apple pie, ice cream and crème brûlée. However, the composition will vary depending on the restaurant and some even add an extra dessert. There is even a Cafe Gourmand at Mc Donald’s outlets in France.
Here are a few to whet your appetite