Franche-Comte

The Franche-Comté cuisine is essentially made of cheese and charcuterie, with some variations depending on the department. Thus, in the Jura, many recipes are based on yellow wine, wine very characteristic produced almost exclusively in this department. Overall, the traditional recipes of the Franche-Comté are more caloric, often with fatty sauces. Few specialties there are made of green vegetables for example.

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This is due to the almost self-sufficient lifestyle of the Franche-Comté. During the long mountain winters (in the Haut-Doubs, for example), farmers had to produce almost all of their food themselves. They raised a lot of cows and pigs, and therefore produced their own meat and their own dairy products. The menus were therefore more often composed of ham and cheese than green beans that are difficult to grow in colder areas.

However, we must not forget that the Franche-Comté is a region with a diverse landscape. Men do not live the same way in the plains of Upper Saone and the Jura mountains. Therefore, they eat sometimes completely differently. It is produced, for example much more fruits in the orchards north of Haute-Saône than in the rest of the department.

The last feature of the culinary tradition of Franche-Comté is the disparity: there is virtually no local specialty in Belfort or Besançon, which are nevertheless among the largest cities in the region. Moreover, in the Territoire de Belfort, that was for long attached to Alsace, with a large part of the population born in Alsace, recipes typically comtoises as well as typically Alsatian (sauerkraut for example, even if cabbage is often replaced by salted turnips).

The country is much richer than the small cities in gourmet dishes. Because farmers had more time to cook than the rich bourgeois? It’s a possibility … but in fact Comté cuisine is essentially a rustic kitchen, of peasant origin, passed through a village gentrification that helped solidify a number of traditional recipes and elevate them to regional specialties.

Being near Switzerland requires the majority of restaurants in Franche-Comté to offer a multitude of dish made of cheese. Fondue is an institution here in the developed state of the art, and the fondue of Jura contains only Comte. But fashions change and chefs know how to adapt to the tastes of our time. Thus, cancoillotte appears in some dishes, like Bleu de Gex or Mont d’Or, it is also eaten hot. But fans of traditional charcuterie do not shun the region because the Franche-Comté, Doubs to be exact, has a treasure trove of French gastronomy: the Montbéliard sausage, and the Morteau, thicker and longer and more smoked than the first, which can be eaten as an appetizer or main course, embellished with a knob of butter. Yellow Jura wine also helps to make coq au vin jaune, and rarer but equally delicious trout with yellow wine. The Franche Comté cuisine will surprise the most discerning palates.

Long times stronghold of the Dukes of Burgundy, Franche-Comte, on the border of Switzerland, is an area that was not completely attached to the kingdom of France before Louis XIV. In the nineteenth century, in the Comte Prussians destroyed the Second Empire. Today it consists of the Haute Saône, Territoire de Belfort, Doubs and Jura, and Franche-Comté is a region where life is good, proud of its traditions and culture. Here, near the Swiss border, watchmaking was long known and although superb comtoises clocks are most often found in museums, watchmakers were able to revive a moribund industry in our times. In addition to watches, Franche-Comté is also the home of the pipes, toy or eyewear …

If the Franche-Comté have always seen outstanding craftsmen, gastronomy is also renowned. In winter, when the air cools, do not miss all the flavor of a good Sausage, along with “Rösti” (potato pancakes) and a salad of “cramaillots” (dandelions). Wild mushrooms canned lovingly will flavour some of the best dishes of our gastronomy. For fans, the Jura will surprise a Yellow Arbois wine with flavors of wax, nuts and almonds that is sometimes confused with straw wine, another Jurassic curiosity. But the fame of the region is undoubtedly in the cheeses, the most famous is the Comte with a yellow and fruity pulp, but also cancoillotte, Bleu de Gex and Mont d’Or du Haut Doubs which can be eaten hot, with a spoon …

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