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I recently bought a book, Whole Grain Mornings which is all about breakfasts with a variety of whole grains. Oats, rye, barley, cracked wheat. A great book. I highly recommend it. Of course, given that its about whole grains, how this will fit into a French food lovin’ guy like me used to using adulterated pastry flour or white flour, bringing in the whole wheat variety, cornmeal, well…small wonder that it didn’t hit the mark for my wife’s palate. She found the crust rather flavorless (I disagree) whereas I found its crunch to be a nice counterpoint to the soft custard filling of smoked salmon, capers, onions, and dill.

She requested me to never make it again. But she really liked the rectangular tart pan.

Accompanying tonight’s Smoked Salmon Creme Fraiche Tart with Cornmeal Millet Crust was my real success– Arugula and Avocado Salad with Parmesan Crisps. Made from scratch, it was simply young arugula leaves with slices of avocado and Parmesan Crisps sprinkled on top, all with a simple olive oil and wine vinegar vinaigrette. The Parmesan crisps are so simple to make, and add a nice crunch and salty kick to the salad (or even a risotto): heat up a nonstick skillet to medium heat, then pile small tablespoon-sized lumps of Parmesan cheese on the top. No extra oil needed; just let them melt, carefully flip them when they start to brown, and finish the other sides. Put them on some waxed paper to cool and continue to harden.

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A nice enough dinner despite my wife’s dismay about whole wheat, but as I also made a couple of other successful dishes from this book which will appear on another post, I’ll delve into it some more. And yes, more whole wheat dishes will come through. I still suspect that whole wheat has less of a place in many formal dinner plans, but they still shine for breakfast and such.

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