Far Breton by Sanae 01/08/2013



The tradition is to spend Christmas in grey, misty, humid Brittany. We sit around the oval table and share a meal of roasted chicken stuffed with stewed plums and chestnuts that my grandfather has handpicked himself. It’s not that cold outside, the nearby sea keeps the air rather mild, but we like to gather around the wood fire in the afternoon and tell stories, discuss our full bellies, continue feasting. This year I was in Washington D.C., but now I’m back in Brittany. My grandmother used to be the chef at home, cooking her rice puddings, flans, green peas with carrots, gratin de courgettes, and since her death, my grandfather has reverted to sipping the same soup for dinner every evening, sometimes he eats an omelet, bread, and salad from the garden. On my first day I suggested that we prepare the stuffed chicken, a dish he always made with my grandmother. We spent two hours peeling chestnuts in the kitchen, until our fingers pruned and the windows fogged up from the heat. I saw my first chicken heart, which I cut into tiny slices for the stuffing. For dinner I made ham and cheese galettes, slathering a thick layer of sea salt butter on the buckwheat pancake. The following day, with two chickens bronzing in the oven, we set the table for ten and heated green beans from the garden that my grandfather keeps preserved in a jar during the winter. Although we ate like kings, there were leftovers in the fridge, and today we devoured them in a sweet meal of slow-cooked cabbage and chestnuts, crowned with tender pieces of chicken, and a Far Breton for dessert.

The Far Breton is like a flan, but the one my aunt makes has less sugar, is firm on the bottom and creamy on top. It may be the simplest dessert dish, the kind you make at the very last minute. It’s versatile: you can substitute the prunes for vanilla and rum, or calvados and stewed apples. Be creative! Change it depending on what ingredients you have at hand in your kitchen.


Far Breton

(Serves six)
2 tablespoons of salted butter
½ liter milk (about 2 cups)
100 grams sugar
125 grams flour
3 eggs
1 ½ cups prunes
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
In a large bowl stir flour and sugar and eggs until the mixture is smooth. Slowly add the milk and continue to whisk. Melt butter and add to a rectangular cake mold or Pyrex. Place the prunes in the cake mold, and then pour the mixture on top. Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes until top is puffed and brown-golden. The Far will be dense and creamy, and can be served cold or warm.

One Response to “Far Breton”

  1. Emmanuelle says:

    Great read Sanae! Thanks for the recipe ;)