It was a gutsy move baking these for the best French chef around, but I learned to make them from chef Mark Ramsdell of L’ Academie de Cuisine. I was elated when Jacques pronounced them “terrific!” and his daughter (and TV costar), Claudine Pépin said they were the best she’s ever had.
The foundation of this dish is onions and apples, classic pork go-withs in both France and America, while the flavorful wet rub — grainy mustard (French), honey, brown sugar, Sriracha and bourbon (from Kentucky) — is a mélange. Roasted in the oven for under an hour, everything comes together in a mix of sweet and hot that calls for some dunkables — biscuits or baguette.
If ever there was a melt-in-the-mouth dessert, this is it! Chocolate and caramel tarts are high on the list of the most popular desserts.
A cookie crust is firmer but more tender than a flaky pie crust. It maintains its crisp and tender texture even when chilled, which makes it more suitable for tarts that require refrigeration.
The French chef Joël Robuchon has been known to say he limits his dishes to no more than three dominant flavors so you appreciate the intrinsic flavors of a dish. Here I flavor French string beans with toasted hazelnuts and fresh dill, and I think they all work really well together.
There’s actually a fair amount of “classical” French cookery here: the chicken roasted with a mustard glaze, the potatoes done in a little chicken fat (as it runs off the bird). Serve this rich meal alongside a shredded lettuce and carrot salad with a vinegary dressing.