Dijon, the capital of Burgundy, is renowned for its cuisine, and the international summer school had an arrangement with a local chef’s school to provide cooking classes for summer students while the regular French chef students were on vacation.
I was a French major in college and was lucky enough to spend some extended periods of time in France.
In the summer of 1968 (if you’re old enough you’ll remember the student uprising in May of ’68…it was an interesting time to be in France) I studied at the University of Dijon.
For the princely sum of 5 francs (about US$1 at the time), I could go to the hotel and work with master chefs to prepare a three-course dinner.
While it was cooking we had a class describing the region of France the menu came from and the appropriate wines to serve with it…and then we sat down and ate a fabulous feast. My appreciation for French food grew each time I went.
Perhaps that is where my life-long fascination with French Patisseries—pastry shops—began.
My husband realized during our first trip to France that I had to stop at every pastry shop we passed—not to buy (though of course on occasion we did…) but to admire the gorgeous creations.
French tarts, the closest thing to a pie, are works of art, with beautifully arranged patterns of fruit and shiny glazes.