Tartine - the new bruschetta?

                                     Mafioso mutton dressed as Mont-Saint-Michel lamb

You say bruSHETta, I say bruSKETta, but where were we during the passing of the bruschetta, now we all say tartine!
A tartine is really just a fancy French name for an open-faced sandwich. It sounds so much more elegant than open sandwich, doesn't it? But the reality is its just mafioso mutton dressed as Mont- Saint -Michel lamb.Most of us are familiar with bruschetta and crostini - toasted,open-faced bread with jolly toppings.And that is exactly what a French tartine is. Just like bruschetta, tartines can be topped with a myriad of flavoursome seasonal ingredients, the only difference being the French twist. The one essential however to a great tartine is the bread.The better the bread, the better the tartine.Sourdough bread is good ,but any artesan bread with a sturdy crumb and a good flavour, that will stand up to the heat of the grill, can be used.Thicker cut slices of bread will produce knife and fork tartines while thinner slices can be hand held. Start your day or end your meal with sweet tartines,strawberries with ricotta and honey or figs and goats cheese with honey for breakfast. Move on to savoury tartines for an impromptu lunch in the garden. Spread your tartines with tapenade, anchovies olives and capers.These are the three secret piquant palate pleasers that will give your tartine that authentic taste of Provence.Lather it with chicken liver pate or foie gras, mackerel pate or creamed cheese and chives with a peppering of radish.There are so many ways to dress up a piece of toast or make a tartine.

Breakfast Strawberries ricotta and honey 

Goats cheese honey and fig 
Scrambled eggs and smoked salmon

Brunch or lunch 

Mediterranean Grilled Vegetable Tartine 
Radish chives cream cheese
Chicken liver pate parsley 
Egg avocado and rocket with capers 
White bean purée with horseradish fava beans and rocket presunto de serrano 
Mushroom bacon and spinach

Tartine of roasted mediterranean vegetables with harissa

Equal quantities of red onion sliced,Courgette in chunks, aubergine in chunks and red peppers de-seeded and cut into strips
Slices of artesan country style bread or sourdough 

Harissa paste for dressing the vegetables ( home made or a good commercial brand)

Prepare all the vegetables and put them in a roasting tray.Toss the vegetables with generous amounts of extra virgin olive oil,season with salt and pepper and place in a hot oven 200c to roast for about 40 minutes.Toast the bread on a hot griddle until crispy and cover with portions of roasted vegetables.Top with dollops of harissa paste

Tartine of goats cheese, honey and fig

Fresh figs sliced into thick rounds 

1 log of goats cheese (Chevre or queijo de cabra curado) cut into rounds
Honey for drizzling

Toast the slices of bread on a hot griddle until crispy.Cover each slice with rounds of goats cheese.top with the slices of figs, drizzle with honey.Serve.

Tartine of strawberries ricotta and honey

Thick slices country bread or sourdough
1/2 cup fresh ricotta
1 tsp honey
6 oz strawberries, washed and sliced
4 leaves basil, cut into chiffonade optional

Toast slices of bread on hot griddle until crispy. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk honey into ricotta until combined and mixture is light and airy. Divide ricotta between warm toast slices and top with strawberries and basil if using.

Find the best tartines in the Algarve, made fashionable again by Bruno at
La petite france R. Poeta. Emiliano da Costa 37, 8800-357 Tavira



  1. It's funny how a foreign name ennobles the humble "Käsebrot" or "Wurstbrot" - a staple of German "Abendbrot" (evening sandwiches). Lovely post, again.


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