Tour France; A Michelin-Starred Evening

Bliss Clients Create their Own Gourmet Meal

The chef shows us the ropes

The chef shows us the ropes

One thing Bliss Travels prides itself on is giving our clients unique insider experiences on our journeys through France, Spain, and Belgium. Since we customize each trip to suit the interests of the group, these experiences are always a little different. From private wine tastings in 800 year old cellars in Burgundy, to painting lessons in the lavender fields of Provence with a professional artist, to private tours of the Sagrada Familia Basilica of Barcelona with a seasoned art specialist as your guide, Bliss always leaves you with unforgettable memories.

Clients working hard for the perfect meal

Clients working hard for the perfect meal

For our clients touring France this May, this proved to be exactly the case! On our journey through Provence, this group of foodies were taken to a renowned restaurant to meet the head chef, a Michelin-starred creative genius and enthusiastic lover of cuisine. But of course things didn’t end there. The head chef led the group to the restaurant’s kitchen for a private cooking lesson, where they chopped, sautéed, and laughed their way to a gourmet meal.

You can practically smell it from here!

You can practically smell the ripe melon it from here!

Under the guidance of the engaging chef, who is also a TV personality here, the meal came out stunningly. It was promptly enjoyed with bottles of local wine hand picked by Bliss (Who turns down a local wine when the area includes Chateauneuf du Pape and the other great Cote du Rhone wines?)  Of course, it’s not all food and wine. It’s also a great (and small) group of eight fun loving, interesting people that make these sorts of events a success. And this group laughed and enjoyed themselves late into the night.

Pure Bliss? We would say so. Come tour France with us and decide what your next adventure will be!

A Bientot!

Bliss Travels

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Cooking Lesson in Provence

How To Make Soupe au Pistou!

Soupe au Pistou is a Provencal dish (and a real treat). It’s a vegetable soup laced (read: filled) with a garlic and basil pesto. Everyone has different recipes for it. Bliss Travels recipe is below. We taught it to a group last May, and they loved it. Of course, they picked herbs on a farm in Provence, sat outside, using a “summer kitchen” and drank wonderful rose! Dinner was served on a terrace, by candlelight, and everyone thought it a great success. Needless to say, people were happy!

My preference is to use a small amount of potato for the starch, rather than the slightly less traditional pasta. I do this because the potato essentially dissolves and the starch thickens the broth. Pasta doesn’t do this. And pasta will continually expand and “eat up” all of the liquid in your soup. This soup is better, better, best room temperature after sitting a few days. Yum! Serve it with a roast Camembert (not at all Provencal) or some local sausages and bread (much more “local”) and have a wonderful evening in and “from” the garden!

Soupe au Pistou

4 Medium Leeks, white and light green only, thinly sliced

12 ounces onion, thinly sliced

12 ounces carrots, cut into quarters and thinly slice

1 to 1 ½ pounds of potatoes, thinly sliced

Bay leaf

Thyme, 1 stick celery

12 ounces or more of haricots verts and other varieties of green beans

2-3 zucchini, sliced thinly

2 Tomatoes, finely chopped

Pistou:

4 cloves of garlic

3 plus ounces of Basil leaves

Salt/pepper

3 ounces of grated parmesan cheese

Approximately one cup of Olive oil

Lemon, if desired Continue reading