How to get your head round a restaurant menu in Normandy
We demystify those untranslatable dishes and change your menu nightmare in to menu heaven!
Agneau de pré-salé
Meadow-salted lamb. The flavour of lamb from the meadows of Cotentin and Saint-Michel bay are periodically covered by seawater. La Baie de Mont St. Michel therefore boasts the famous pre-salé – lambs grazing on the meadow-grass have a very distinctive, salty taste.
Rice pudding made from full fat milk, flavoured with cinnamon and baked for hours in the bread oven as it cools down after a breadmaking session ……
A la Normande / Vallée d’Auge
You will see lots of meat or poultry on the menu described as à la Normande/Vallée d’Augée e.g. Escalope de volaille à la Normande (Poultry à la normande) The ‘à la Normande’ bit refers to the sauce and generally means an addition of cream and butter, and sometimes mushrooms.
Omelette – à la Mère Poulard
Le Mont St. Michel is also reknowned for it’s omelette – à la Mère Poulard….the egg whites and yolks are simply beaten separately before cooking thereby giving a lighter consistency. The omelette is name after the restaurant located in the village and that invented this omelette
Tripes à la mode de Caen
Literally Caen-style tripe. Tripe braised in cider and calvados for hours on end thereby giving a melt-in-your-mouth result – wonderful!
Joue de Bœuf
Cow’s cheek (from the face!)
Once marinated in red wine for a couple of days with a selection of légumes, then braised for 10 hours, the result is worth waiting for – heavenly!
Andouille de Vire
(Chitterling in English) is definitely something of a delicacy. Made from pig’s stomach and intestines, the bundles of gut are tied, encased in more intestine and smoked over an open fire for up to 6 weeks, before being simmered with herbs for up to 8 hours. Andouille is generally served as a starter.