Brittany is a region set in the north west of France and like most other areas of the country has distinct culinary specialties for which it’s famous both nationally and globally.
Most famous of all Breton dishes I would say is the galette. A savoury kind of crêpe made from buckwheat and filled with delicious but simple ingredients. In the dessert sphere, there is the kouign amann, which is pastry sheets laminated in butter and sugar that caramelize as they cook. (The best version I’ve tasted outside of France can be found at the amazing Lune Croissanterie in Melbourne).
The third famous dish, and the one that I’m showing you today sits somewhere between the two above as it is a dessert, but far less sweet than the kouign amann. It’s the Far Breton.
Far Breton is a custard flan with tasty prunes (which have been soaked in rum or Armagnac) hiding at the bottom that is baked to form a gold or almost black shell on top. This recipe started life in the 18th century and was originally eaten completely savoury as a side to meat.
It’s super simple to make but one tip I would give to achieve the most authentic result is to use the freshest (preferably organic) milk you can find, and, despite promoting using local produce most of the time, butter imported from Brittany or Normandy. The Brittany (and Normandy) regions make some of the best butter in the world and while we have high quality dairy in Australia, the taste just isn’t quite the same.
- 700ml full fat milk
- 300ml thickened cream
- 250g plain flour
- 250g caster sugar
- 200g pitted dried prunes
- 50g salted butter
- 2 tablespoon rum
- 6 free range eggs
- 2 vanilla pods, seeds out
- Preheat the oven at 150 degrees Celsius (fan forced) and place your cake tin in the oven
- Warm up the milk and cream in a sauce pan or microwave.
- Whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla seeds together until slightly white and fluffy.
- Add the sifted flour and whisk until the batter becomes smooth.
- Pour in the warm milk and mix until combined, then add the rum.
- Pour the mix in the hot tin, put in the prunes and salted butter pieces.
- Bake in hot oven for about 1 ½ hour. Do not open the oven once the cake is in!
Leave to cool in the tin at room temperature and enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea! Or the way I like it, is with a glass of Calvados!
Watch the how to video below or visit my Youtube channel here to view more videos.