I usually stick to one style or one cuisine when I make or change dishes but here the Italian and Japanese traditions where so close that I could not resist to mix and match. So instead of using white wine, olive oil and parsley for spaghetti alle vongole, I used a soybean paste, coriander and some seaweed powder. The result was excellent.
We often go to Dieppe and buy fresh fish there on the quay, walk around the market and have lunch in one of the many restaurants.
A favourite place often serves “crushed potatoes’ as a side dish – cooked potatoes crushed with a fork and some cream for smoothness.
Back home, I tried my version to accompany a dish of small sole with a clam sauce.
We spent a Saturday at the Normandy coast, with nice moules frites — mussels and fries, in this case with ham, chorizo and cream — in Houlgate and large windy villa’s in Cabourg along a sandy beach.
In Ouistreham, a small port down close to the Orne estuary from which ferries go to Portsmouth and Southampton, there are some fish stalls on the quai and I bought fresh clams.
At the fresh market in our town we found a fishmonger from Brittany who had a good selection of sea food. We bought some, including fresh clams to use in an Italian inspired dish of spaghetti con vongole.
I saw ‘oursins’ on the market, sea urchins. They look like spiky purple balls. Usually the fish monger has opened one up to show the orange “tongues” that are eaten. This way you can see the freshness. As with all sea food, the further away from the water, the more perishable it is. Some people … Read more