Making Tartine Like Grandmère Did
When you eat one of the signature tartines at Le Pain Quotidien, you’re not just eating the traditional Belgian open-faced sandwich – you’re tasting a bit of Alain Coumont’s childhood.
Courmont, founder of the chain of artisan bakeries, was at his Coconut Grove restaurant, sharing tips for making some of his favorite savory treats at a special workshop around the communal table. As a young boy in Belgium, he recalled going to his grandmother’s house every Wednesday for steaming hot chocolate. Here, the table recalls the tradition of breaking bread, warm and hot from the ovens, with friends and family.
The rustic sandwiches are far from fancy, made from fresh ingredients atop toasted organic whole-wheat sourdough (it’s baked daily in-house), then cut into easy-to-eat triangles so it’s “easy to eat with your fingers," says Courmont. He assembled his version of avocado toast, spreading the bread lightly with avocado mashed with a bit of lemon and salt and layering avocado slices on top. (The recipe for his citrus cumin salt is here)
He makes another popular tartine by spreading the toast with a few spoonsful of ricotta cheese, scattering dried figs on top and drizzling it with honey. Paper-thin slices of prosciutto are draped on top, sprinkled with a bit of olive oil and strewn with a few peppery arugula leaves.
Menu items at all locations Le Pain Quotidien include pastries and breakfast and brunch foods – Belgian waffles, eggs, soups and salads, croque monsieur and quiche – but each restaurant incorporates seasonal specials and local flavors, like a dragon fruit smoothie bowl and a key lime chia parfait. Tartines, from $10.95 to $14.95, can be customized by adding an egg or smoked salmon.
Le Pain Quotidien
3425 Main Highway, Coconut Grove
Open Mon-Fri 7am-10pm; Sat 8am-10pm; Sun 8am-8pm