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How to Host an Epic Bastille Day Bash Sans Trip to Paris!

 By Marie-Antoinette Issa.

If you haven't made it to France this Summer, then an at-home Bastille Day Party may just be the next best thing! We caught up with Tom Deadman, Head Chef at popular Sydney French institution Bistro Moncur and asked him to spill his tips on hosting a très bien Bastille Day bash. 

Bon appetit

With a deep-seated passion for French cuisine cultivated during his time living in France and his current role at Bistro Moncur, Tom brings a wealth of experience and authenticity to the table for those keen to celebrate France's National Day on Sunday, July 14. 

According to Tom, a Bastille Day celebration isn't complete without a couple of classic French dishes. 
How to Host an Epic Bastille Day Bash Sans Trip to Paris!

"In France, it's all about going out on Bastille Day,” he says. "Tucking into Godiveau sausages with baguette and Dijon as you walk around at the ‘fête de village’ drinking Marquisette - a French cocktail of Champagne, white wine and rum.”
However, closer to home, Tom recommends opting for easy-to-make appetisers and mains with authentic ingredients to avoid making any French foodie faux pas.

"Wine, cheese and bread embody quintessential French conviviality,” says Tom. "With the best options including camembert, brie and crusty baguettes.”

Similarly, he suggests party planners take inspiration from the Bastille Day offerings at Bistro Moncur (or simply make a Bastille Day booking) where the menu will feature, "a full-blown plate of charcuterie to start with, alongside our duck rillettes and pâté.”

For something a little more substantial: "Steak tartare is my absolute go-to,” says Tom. "Simply pair it with Dijon, cornichon, eschalot, capers, black pepper and olive oil and serve with freshly fried bowls of pommes frites!”

As for sweet treats, Tom (who will be plating up four exquisite mini desserts: mousse aux chocolat, pistachio choux bun, pear and frangipane slice and tarte au citron at Bistro Moncur’s Cafe Gourmand on Sunday, July 14) recommends a few crowd-pleasing classics- such as crème brûlée and tart tatin. 

How to Host an Epic Bastille Day Bash Sans Trip to Paris!
Both are simple to make and pay homage to the flavours of France: "Match them with pastis followed by Côtes de Provence, for the perfect pairing of drinks and desserts.”

When it comes to accommodating dietary requirements, Tom acknowledges it can be difficult to recreate authentic French fare without dairy and gluten, but says he has "substituted corn flour for regular flour in savoury soufflé and chocolate fondant recipes and it comes out great.” 

All about the ambience

Creating an authentic French atmosphere at home, ready to celebrate the national holiday involves attention to detail. For that reason, Tom advises "starting with appetisers and canapés upon guests' arrival as they set the tone for the evening.”

Beyond this, traditional Bastille Day colours should dominate - bleu, blanc and rouge rule - Tom suggests plastering the room with national flags.

How to Host an Epic Bastille Day Bash Sans Trip to Paris!

For those seeking the perfect musical backdrop, Tom proposes the vintage charm of Les Frères Jacques: "My wife's grandfather was in this quartet that started in 1946 and I highly recommend their music for French ambience and bringing a buzz to your Bastille Day bash.” 

French day festivities

Finally, Tom recommends incorporating a few engaging activities into your entertainment to bring the fun to your French Day festivities.
"I’m not too sure about traditional but pentanque is a classic game to be played!” 
To imbue the celebration with a touch of culture, Tom encourages guests to embrace iconic French attire.

"Don your best blue and white marine, grab a red beret and celebrate with a bottle of Charles Heidsieck Champagne!”
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