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What is worth eating in Provence?

| Monika Kraska |

We travel the world not only to see beautiful sights. We travel the world to learn about the culture and customs of other nations, as well as to taste a country’s regional delicacies. Lying in the south of France, Provence, while mostly known for its huge lavender crops and unusual tourist attractions, also boasts a Provençal cuisine rich in tradition. So, what is worth eating in Provence?

Provençal Tian

Tian is already an iconic dish originating in Provence. It is a simplified version of ratatouille. The name Tian derives from a special vessel – a round clay pot, which has been used in Provence for generations to cook vegetables. Tian is usually prepared with sliced tomatoes, eggplants, onions, zucchini, and peppers. To bring out the flavor, Provençal herbs are used, of course. Tian often serves as a side dish for the main course, but nothing prevents you from eating it as a light lunch or dinner.

Provençal stew

Provençal stew, also known as daube, although once described as a poor man’s dish, is now one of the favorite dishes of the people of Provence – especially in winter. Preparing daube is a true ritual. It begins with layering meat (beef or mutton) along with vegetables in a special red clay pot, which is usually quite narrow.

The feature that distinguishes daube from the ordinary stew is that the whole thing is marinated in wine for several hours. Usually, white wine is used for veal and lamb, and red wine for beef. A traditional Provençal stew is roasted over an open fire for about four hours. The whole dish is the main course and is usually served with gnocchi pasta.

Soup pistou

La soupe au pistou is a vegetable soup, prepared with a base of broth or water. It was created by Provençal cooks who wanted to make the most of Provence’s abundant gifts of nature. One more special ingredient – pistou sauce – is added to pistou soup, which contains various vegetables in its composition, as well as olive oil and pasta. It is made from tomatoes, garlic, Parmesan cheese, basil, and olive oil. Pistou sauce has become known as a cousin of Italian pesto sauce.