It’s a full-on French weekend coming up!  Grab your beret and celebrate Bastille Day tomorrow (Saturday July 14) with a traditional communal meal.   Since the weather will be scorching, we suggest a French picnic near a lake or Elliott Bay.  On Sunday (July 15), watch France play Croatia in the World Cup final game.

French flagWe have 4″ x 6″ decorative French flags in stock ($2.99 each).  Display the tricolor on your table, around the house, or in the car.

We’ve got plenty of chilled rosé, Champagne, Cremants and refreshing white wines to keep everyone cool.   If you are a red wine drinker, we’ve got a great selection of picnic-ready vins rouges.   Some of these are even better with a slight chill.

Bayonne Dry-Cured Ham

Jambon du Bayonne

We have the authentic Jambon de Bayonne from the French Basque country.   This ham is first salted and dried and then aged for 12 months, where it develops a depth of aromas and flavors.  Slightly salty and sweet with notes of hazelnuts, it makes a tasty sandwich with Dijon mustard or served on a charcuterie plate.   We also carry Saucisson Sec and Rosette de Lyon salamis (approximately 10 oz each), which can be purchased whole or sliced.  Add some Pâté de Campagne or Duck Mousse au Porto, cornichons and French mini toasts to the mix and celebrate like you’re in Paris.  Our French fromage selection includes soft-ripened double cream cheese, Roquefort, Brie, Mimolette and more.   Stop in, taste, and select the cheeses that suit your palate.

Here is a delicious picnic recipe that can be made in advance.
Leeks in Vinaigrette  (4 servings)

4 large leeks, white and pale-green parts only, tough outer layer removed
Kosher salt
1 small shallot, finely chopped
leeks in vinaigrette½ garlic clove, finely grated
1 tablespoon Sherry vinegar*
1 teaspoon Fallot Dijon mustard*
1 teaspoon Maille whole grain mustard*
½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
¼ cup olive oil*
1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
2 Tablespoons chopped roasted Marcona Almonds*
Freshly ground black pepper
* Available at Paris-Madrid Grocery


Trim root end of leeks (leave as intact as possible so they don’t break apart while cooking) and cook in a large pot of boiling salted water until meltingly tender (a paring knife should go all the way through with no resistance), 15–20 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain; let cool.

Whisk shallot, garlic, vinegar, Dijon and whole grain mustards, and thyme in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in oil and 1 Tbsp. water; season vinaigrette with salt and pepper.

Halve leeks lengthwise and arrange on a platter, cut side up; drizzle with vinaigrette and let sit at least 10 minutes before serving.    Just before serving, sprinkle the chopped egg and almonds over the leeks.

DO AHEAD: Leeks can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Bon week-end!    Sharon