Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Les Tartes de Françoise arrives in nyc

We all have favorite desserts. When I start musing about cheesecakes, I can taste them with my eyes. New York varieties are thick and rich made with cream cheese and graham crackers, Italian versions created with ricotta cheese feel so homey, while the French versions are altogether another taste and texture, made with fromage blanc. One of my most favorite is “Fromage blanc spéculoos” from Les Tartes de Françoise. No matter how many times I’ve eaten it, at room temperature or slightly warm from the oven, it never fails to surprise and delight with its perfect combination of textures -- the fluffy, light, cheese snuggled into a crunchy crust of crushed spice cookies, the traditional, Belgium spéculoos variety. Only their ovens and chefs know how to bake them, just so. I have just returned from the Brussels, tiny, discreet, Françoise shop, actually the atelier, which as an afterthought happens to kindly also sell retail via word of mouth. When they heard my accent, the staff proudly told me that they have just opened a shop in NYC. So if you live in the neighborhood, and want to fall in love, do scout them out and enjoy a slice of Françoise’s Fromage blanc spéculoos!
And if you don't live in NYC or Brussels, here is a recipe for those special Belgium spice cookies, spéculoos.

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