Sometimes, I truly hate doing the weekly shopping.
I try to time it so the store is the least busy, meaning that I'm checking out around 1:00pm when every proper French person is sitting down to their 3 course lunch.
Unfortunately, that means that things like shelf restocking and floor sweeping are also going on.
I was in the produce section, looking for green garlic (having bought out the entire supply at the little green grocer I go to first). Some bright bulb had decided it was more decorative than vegetable and, rather than having it grouped together in a logical place, had tossed it about the entire produce department…. And very little of it at that.
As I stopped to look about, an angry employee came at me with a broom and demanded I and my trolley move to the other side of the aisle.
She needed to sweep.
No sooner had I done so than another angry employee, this one on the big floor cleaning machine, came up behind me and demanded I move.
I was already pissed off that I had to track down the green garlic one stalk at a time, and now I was trapped between two opposing cleaners, both demanding that I get out of their way, which was impossible because the other was in MY way.
I felt like a pull toy between two dogs.
I acquiesced and maneuvered out of their respective ways.
They then proceeded to have a chat with each other.
Thoroughly disgruntled and vowing to boycott the store forever, I went to the cashier.
It being lunch time, very few were open; it being Easter weekend the lines stretched on forever.
Never let it be said that the store would open up more lanes because they were busy. The customer should know and accept that it will be busy and have patience.
At supermarkets in France one bags one's own groceries…. And one brings the bags to do it.
It's usually a frantic race for the customer to finish putting their stuff on the belt at one end, then race through and get it bagged at the other while the cashier sits and serenely scans the items.
The American in me demands that I finish bagging at the same time she finishes scanning. I don't want to be the one holding up the line.
Not true of the French who are both leisurely and methodical.
I finally get close enough to the cashier to monitor the proceedings.
There is a lovely, older woman having a bit of difficulty bagging her groceries. The cashier got up and started helping her, filling her bags. But the bags were too heavy for her to lift into her trolley. The woman ahead of me moved ahead and helped get everything neatly packed into the trolley.
All the time the three were working, they were chatting and laughing.
It was nice.
No one, ahead or behind me, was upset by the delay.
Maybe I won't boycott the store after all.
Besides, they always have an ample supply of puff pastry (unlike some other stores)
This makes a light and crispy pizza – and is so quick and easy it should be considered fast food…
Perfect for dinner after playing Easter Bunny.
Puff Pastry Pizza with Prosciutto
Use regular 'pizza' mozzarella for this, as the fresh balls have too much moisture in them and make a soggy crust.
2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 cup (4oz, 125gr) shredded or sliced mozzarella for cooking or pizza
4 thin slices Prosciutto, (3.5oz, 100gr)
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
Lay the pastry crust out on a baking sheet.
Slice tomatoes as thinly as possible, 8 – 10 slices per tomato. Tear Prosciutto into small pieces. Arrange the tomato slices on the pastry. Lay the Prosciutto on top. Sprinkle with herbs, then cheese. Bake in a preheated oven, 400F (200C) for 20 – 25 minutes, or until crust and top are golden brown.
for April 2 we have Sole with Browned Butter and Capers, Emerald Soup, Roast Leg of Lamb, Pasta with Leftover Lamb and White Beans, Chicken with Bacon and Mushrooms, Stir-Fried Turkey with Spring Vegetables….
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15 thoughts on “Puff Pastry Pizza with Prosciutto; the weekly shopping”
I also feel compelled to pack everything very very quickly in French grocery stores. As a result, it is sloppy and messy. i always I will be berated by some cranky shopper if I am too slow. And I like to be methodical, too.
But yes, no one has ever yelled at me.
Some grocery stores here have you bag your own, they also charge for plastic bags which would encourage you to bring your own. We sometimes need to take cue from the French.It would also be nice to even be noticed at some grocery stores and not looked past.
oooooo. I am talking to my host on set through my headset reading about this pizza to him. He says it sounds delicious, and I happen to agree. Guess who happens to have puff pastry at home waiting to be put to good use. Do you have to score or dock at all?
Katie: That looks amazing. Wonder if I could come up with a gluten free puff pastry…..may take some doing, but at some point will try. All of your recipes look soo yummy! Ina
I am so addicted to your stories!!!! Love them!!!!!!
But, a trolley, guess that’s a grocery cart, love it! Perfect name for it!
We have no stores here where we have to bag it ourselves and I like it that way. But, I’ll tell you what really pisses me off is the moms who let their kids steer the carts (trolleys) and they ram my behind or heels and then there’s the women who stop to chat and block the whole damn aisle. I’m cooking Easter dinner for all and shopped today, the store was packed and I was not in a good mood!!! I did discuss garlic stuffed olives with one woman and we were cracking up! Thanks for letting me get that off my chest!
I’m so glad they helped the older woman, I would’ve pitched in too! Keep going back there because good things do happen there, you observed it!
I would love to grocery shop with you, you did good! Happy Eater!
BTW, the pizza looks great and wish we had that for dinner!
French grocery store clerks intimidate me – and it’s strange because normally I love the French. But the grocery clerks seem impatient and frowning each time I go in there. And they speak so quickly that I can’t understand the amount they are asking for and have to ask them to repeat. The last one I dealt with actually sighed, rolled her eyes and grabbed my money, giving me change without explaining how much it was! I have to say that treatment is a rarity but it only takes one incident like that to stick in the mind – and the craw! 🙂
Yes, it has been an eye opening experience to shop here in St Thomas. Customer service is not a priority, and their patience for my learning curve are not in sync.
It is getting easier, but i am still shopping at three different stores a week to get my supplies to cook for two people.
Here, it’s called island time. If you are not on it, the pace gets slower just to frustrate you.
I guess we are spoiled here in the States. But I find myself spending more time at Farmer’s Markets and farm stands lately. But thank goodness for frozen puff pastry. Your pizza looks perfect. Thanks for mailing the book. I am anxious to receive it. If there is anything you want from here, just let me know and I would be glad to send you a package.
Geez if that were happening in NY there would have been a serious uproar!
Nice to know that people SOMEWHERE stop and smell the roses.
The pizza looks delicious.
I hope Ina comes up with a gluten free puff pastry so I can enjoy something like this, Katie. I do have puff pastry in the freezer however… dare I?
Mimi, it’s hard for me to get used to the fact that I can be slow and methodical with out being yelled at…. I still rush. Old habits of being in a hurry.
Val, the cashiers always look one directly in the eye and say hello before they start ringing up – and wait until you leave and they say good bye before going to the next customer.
TV, it really is a good pizza – ou can score a ring around the edge – but don’t have too, I’ve done it both ways and there is only a slight difference in the edges. Just leave 1/3 inch or so.
Ina, gluten free? not a clue – good luck!
Pam, I hate shopping in busy stores…. and I REALLY hate being rammed in the heels buy kids being ‘cute’
Zoomie, you must have been in a heavy tourist season in August…. Usually I find them to be patient and polite – not always, but usually…
Year on the Grill – but do the stores close promptly at 12:30 to frustrate you further? Some of the big stores stay open, but not all. And remember, that’s part of the ‘joy’ of being an expat (and good fodder for the blog)
Penny, the farmer;s markets are really becoming wonderful in most of the US. and you’re welcome ;-))
Joanne, one learns not to complain – as that causes people to stop and stare rather than hurry up. Best to stand and smile indulgently.
Christine, well, one must do something with the puff pastry, right? It would be a waste to throw it out.
Hi Katie – wow that pizza was so good! We made it on Saturday night. It was a pleasure to get away from attempting dough from scratch or buying pre-made from the store. The puff pastry crust made the pizza much lighter, but just as satisfying. I’ll be giving you props on my site in the next day or so. Thanks for turning me on to this recipe. – Gary
TV, glad you liked it – I made another one this weekend, too. We always eat an entire pizza (the old ‘clean you plate’ habit) – as this one is lighter I don’t feel so bad….
Me neither! We could have eaten another two or three of these pizzas… but we didn’t… we were very disciplined! This really is a great recipe for anyone who is a pizza lover. Thanks again for sharing it. – Gary
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