Every once in a while, when a great travel bargain and those tricky airline points serendipitously align, an opportunity for adventure arises. This October I was delighted to travel to France for an (all too quick) boat trip on the lovely Seine river with stops in beautiful Normandy, an area I've always wanted to visit.
|on the river Normandy, CPaul2015|
A highlight of the trip was a stop at the artist Claude Monet's garden in Giverny, and though it must be spectacular in Spring and Summer, the beautiful grounds, even at the end of the season, did not disappoint.
I soon learned that the region of Normandy is known worldwide for it's fine apples, delicious, but strong, calvados (an apple brandy) and exceptional cheeses. Boasting lush farmland, charming stone farmhouses and it's famous Norman cows, the area inspires rustic cozy recipes perfect for celebrating the crisp arrival of Fall.
|changing trees, Giverny France CPaul2015|
I thought I'd recreate a little taste of Normandy once at home with this simple apple tart from the Barefoot Contessa (click HERE for recipe)
topped with a chantilly cream recipe I found on about food.com
I halved this recipe and found it made enough for a generous dollop on each serving
Calvados can be pricey and tricky to find,
but you can easily substitute rum, water or apple juice
Frozen puff pastry sheets makes this an easy recipe for those
with limited baking skills (moi!)
lovely for dessert or a breakfast treat
served warm or at room temperature, these tarts are perfect with a cup of tea and good book
Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile
William Cullen Bryant