The Alsace Baeckeoffe, meaning "baker's oven" is a regional French dish initially prepared at home by farmers' wives. This original French lamb casserole is exclusively cooked in Alsace, less known than other Alsatian specialities like the Sauerkraut.
The Alsatian stew was originally based on marinated vegetables and meats - pork, mutton and/ or beef - and usually served in an authentic terracotta casserole. After having marinated overnight, the Baeckeoffe used to be taken to the baker's to be oven baked for several hours. According to the tradition, meats have to be arranged between layers of potatoes.
This ancient stew recipe is no longer used; Chefs of the Alsace region of France now prefer cooking the lamb, pork and beef directly in tasty white wine. But in spite of this, the Baeckeoffe remains a common sight in the menu of Alsatian brasseries and gastronomic restaurants. Due to its regional reputation, this delightful dish even has given its name to the casserole in which is served.
Ideal for a family meal, the popular Baeckeoffe is often cooked a day before. Most of Alsatian cooks like to add onions, carrots, leeks, and typical French spices and herbs to make the lamb stew even more flavourful.
Wines - especially whites - are essential in the Alsatian gastronomy. Tasty typical dishes such asCoq-au-vin, a homemade traditional dish of cock marinated in Riesling wine, are not only served with a glass of Gewurtztraminer or Tokay but are also directly cooked with fine Alsatian wine.
To learn more about Alsace Food and Wine, you can visit French-Property.com's complete regional guide.