Who says the return of sunny days says… the return of the tarte flambée ovens! In Alsace, it is not uncommon to own one at home and to fuel it with wood for ideal cooking. Provided you have access to a terrace or a green space, even if some have installed it in their interior.
For all the others, therefore, remains the traditional oven. With often some disappointments at the time of tasting. No crispiness, overcooked or undercooked filling, etc. The solution ? “The slab”, a red clay cooking plate launched by a Strasbourg company, “Flammekuch Koumpanie”.
Since September, their product has known a certain success with already “more than 1,500 units sold”. “We were even out of stock for a while but we restocked,” smiles Théo Krafft, who initiated the project with his father, Dominique. The idea came to them during a visit from a client of their advertising agency. “This manufacturer of tarte flambée bases told us about the ovens and cooking stones that already existed for pizzas and came from Italy. We thought it was crazy that nobody offers the same thing in Alsace for flams! »
“Almost as good as a wood oven but with advantages”
All that remained was to find the manufacturer, locally of course. Direction the pottery village of Soufflenheim. “They came to see me and I told them that it was doable but not easy because the room is large,” recalls Pierre Siegfred. “We tested several materials, different types of clays to finally find a mixture that did not warp and a manufacturing process. I won’t say everything, but there are a dozen hours of cooking and before that, the pieces must stay two weeks in plaster moulds. »
The boss of the Siegfried-Burger pottery today produces “600 pieces per month and we have already produced 3,000”. He is a great believer in this culinary accessory, one centimeter thick, 40 wide and 35.5 deep. “We eat a lot of tartes flambées in Alsace. If we do the math, it promises a bright future! “. What about taste then? “It gives a very good, crispy flammkuchen. I would say it’s almost as good as a wood oven but with advantages. There, you can sit in front of the TV and monitor your temperature. Whereas with wood, you shouldn’t miss it! »
But why this name?
“You have to set the oven to at least 220°C, we recommend 250°C, top and bottom cooking, not fan-assisted. The sole will supply the slab with heat and allow a homogeneity of the bottom of the pie while the top will cook the filling”, specifies Théo Krafft, citing other advantages of his product. “OK, we won’t have the slight taste of wood, but not the burnt taste either, which often goes with it. And you can eat flams without asking too many questions, no need to heat your wood oven for an hour. »
It is moreover from this ease of use that comes the name of the clay slab sold for 59 euros… “Slab because presto, I’ve got the slab, I’m making myself a tarte flambée! »