Normandy | Places to Stay | Places to Eat | Places to Visit | Things to Do | Events Calendar | Firework Displays |Market Days | Gardens Children's Activities | History | Geography & Map | Museums | Recipes & Gastronomy| Sports| World War II |Maison de Normandie
The details on this page have been kindly supplied by Maison de la Normandie et de la Manche
About Norman Cooking
Chicken in a cream sauce (poulet Vallée d’Auge) can be found almost everywhere. Cream naturally plays an important part in many sauces whether with veal or steak. Pork in cider is another country dish which originated in Calvados and Caux area. Lamb on the menu in restaurants in the south of The Manche, near Mont-saint-Michel, will usually include the term “Pré-salé”. This refers to the sheep reared on the salt plains around the bay of Mont-Saint-Michel, which gives the meat a delicate extra taste. Other Norman specialties, which may appeal to the more adventurous, include Tripe traditionally from Caen (Tripe à la mode de Caen) but also served on skewers at la Ferté Macé in the Orne. Vire is famous for its Chitterling ( Andouilles) and in Mortagne-au-Perche, they’re proud of their black pudding. Canard Rouennais is a particular crossbreed of duck from the Seine Valley, which produces a more meaty bird. It is perhaps best not to ask how authentic Canard Rouennais is prepared. For fish dishes, sole from Dieppe is a specialty as is the local fish stew (marmite Diéppoise).
Cheese - Normandy is the undisputed champion of the cheese board and virtually every part of the region can boast its own speciality. Camembert is probably the best known internationally and it hails from the village of the same name near Vimoutiers (just south of the Orne/ Calvados border). If you like your cheese a little stronger, then Livarot and the slightly salty Pont-L’Evêque (both from Calvados) will satisfy. In the Seine-Maritime, it’s the Neufchatel which counts.
Desserts - For a region seemingly overrun with apples and cream then the dessert menu is perhaps predictable. The variety of dishes based on these ingredients which appear on the menu will nevertheless astound you. Of course, the most famous is the apple tart but with the addition of a little flambéed Calvados and fresh cream.
Drink - Normandy cider is generally light and more refreshing to drink than our own notion of “scrumpy” and as such it can be the perfect companion to many dishes. The result of distilling cider is of course Calvados. The fiery Brandy is normally served with (or even in) your coffee although its traditional role is to be drunk between courses. Many restaurants now offer a more refreshing version of the Trou Normand in the form of a Calvados flavored sorbet. Calvados is used with the “must” or the “worst” of cider to produce Normandy’s very own aperitif: the Pommeau. A deliciously refreshing drink when served chilled.
The Cider Route - To the east of Caen, the cider route is assigned tourist route which weaves its way trough countryside typical of the area, linking the villages of Beuvron en Auge, Bonnebosq and Beaufour Druval via picturesque little roads. The rounded landscape, with its chateaux, manors, half-timbered houses and apple orchards, makes up the picture postcard scene. An authentic land where the horse is king, the Pays d’Auge is dotted with famous stud farms. The cider route links about twenty local producers, easily recognisable by the signpost “cru de Cambremer”. They also welcome visitors, offering a guided tour of the cellars and tasting.
The Tradition Route - Situated close to Caen, this tourist route which winds its way through the pré-Bocage via the villages of Villers-Bocage, Dampierre and Caumont l’Eventé is a true reflection of local tradition. Here farmers and craftsmen remain attached to their tradition. Their living spaces and work places, their knowledge and skills, and certain techniques productions are elements of authenticity and quality which are also linked to the methods and technology of today. These producers are open to visitors wanting to see their work places: they will take you on a tour, explaining their production methods as they go along and then selling the end products: honey, cheese, traditional breads, foie gras, cider, pommeau and Calvados…The route is also dotted with old villages, churches, chapels, and an ancient architectural heritage. Several circular footpaths have been signposted and families can also enjoy the lake at Cahagnes or the zoo at Jurques. At Caumont l’Eventé, the soutteroscope is well worth a visit-created within the old slate mines, it highlights the little-known world of geodes.
The Perry route - This itinerary from Domfront to Barenton invites you to cut cross a country of Bocage planted with hedges and peer tree’s orchards. In this only landscape in Europe was born the Perry Domfront (poiré), traditional drink elaborated from the fermentation of the pear’s juice, and which enjoy of an A.O.C. (quality label). The Domfrontais like the Barentonais could of course be discovered in all seasons. But yet don’t miss to come in April, unforgettable moment where peer tree’s dress with 1000 and one flowers. This is an invite to visit the producers, which will welcome you with pleasure and give you their products for sampling.
Some Norman recipes
Veal Escallopes in a Calvados Sauce
Preparation: 10 minutes Cooking time: 30minutes
Ingredients (to serve 5): 5 veal escalopes, 100g (4 oz) butter, 200g (8 oz) mushrooms, 2 soup spoons of vegetable oil, 1 small glass of calvados, 10 dl (1/5th pint) crème fraîche, sprig of parsley, salt, pepper
1) Clean, wash and dry the mushrooms and slice them
2) In a frying pan, heat 50g (2 oz) butter with the oil. Place the escalopes in the pan and cook them on both sides until golden brown. Pour in the calvados, flame. Salt and generously pepper. Add a tiny amount of hot water. Cook over a low heat for 10 mins.
3) In another frying pan, melt the rest of the butter and cook the mushrooms for 6 or 7 mins. Salt and pepper. Wash and shop the parsley.
4) When the escalopes are cooked, add the mushrooms and the crème fraîche and heat until piping hot. Pour into a serving dish, sprinkle on the parsley.
In a large earthenware bowl, place 25 sugar cubes (= 125g or 5oz), 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, 1 pinch of salt, 150g (6 oz) rice and 2 litters of boiling milk. Add a knob of butter. Leave to cook for 5 hours in a cool heaven.
Apple Flan flavoured with Calvados
Tripe traditionally from Caen cooked in cider
Preparation and marinating: (if using raw tripe) 1
Oyster tartlets Normandy style
Preparation: 45 mins.