Trader Joe’s (Maitre Pierre) Tarte D’Alace

traderjoesTrader Joe’s (Maitre Pierre) Tarte D’Alace

Here is Trader Joe’s trying to get all sophisticated on us! Tarte D’Alsace? Who would’ve thunk they’d try and make us all world travelers? This is something that’s been in the freezer section of Trader Joe’s for a few years now and I thought it would be easy come, easy go but it’s survived the test of time and I think that’s great for all of us! The bigger question is this a pizza or not? It sure looks like one, but there are many types of “flatbread” around the world that look similar to pizza. They even call it flatbread on the box, but reality this is very similar to something called Tarte Flambee (yes too EEs at the end).

Tarte Flambée http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarte_flamb%C3%A9e is something that I am very familiar with having travelled to the Alsace on a couple of occasions. If you are not familiar with Alsace, it sits mainly between the Vosge mountains to the west and the Rhine River to the east on the German border. This part of France has switched between German rule and the French for hundreds of years and is a mix of both culture, but in my opinion leans towards German more. Most people there speak French and German. One of the specialty foods you will find in the local pubs and bistro is Tarte Flambée.  Traditional Tarte Flambée is made in a wood fired oven and the toppings are usually fromage blanc (similar to cream cheese or cream fraiche) onions and ham. Gruyere (or a local cheese that is similar) is an upgrade. Sometimes mushrooms are added and Munster cheese is another upgrade if like your cheese stinky! This is usually served as an appetizer at a restaurant, but you can easily get as a main course.  It brings back a lot of memories of the Alsace!

TraderJoesTarteDAlsaceThis is an odd product from Trader Joe’s. First, the quality seems too high to be from a US source, but I could be wrong there. Nothing on the box that indicates that it’s from France (Unlike a couple of other “flatbreads” that say Product of France on the back). The other thing is that there is no indication that this is from Trader Joe’s. All it says is that it’s from Maitre Pierre which I found doing a Google Search. http://www.maitrepierre.com/It appears to be a French company located in the Alsace. A similar product, that has all the same fonts and product styling is the Trader Joe’s Tarte d’Champignon , which is a Product of France and has the Trader Joe’s name on the box. Go figure!

Anyway, how did this taste? I really, really liked it! My wife and I had this with a salad last night. I baked it per the directions and it came out perfect. Nice thin, crunchy crust. More like pie crust than pizza crust. The toppings were all excellent. The ham was perfectly cooked and very flavorful. The onions were perfectly caramelized and had no hard onion flavor, they were very sweet. The cheese was great too. Not too much cheese. The edge of the crust has a fancy edge to it that makes it quite visually appealing. It did taste fairly authentic too! The only thing missing was a hint of smoke flavor from the wood fired oven.

I highly recommend this pizza… umm… flatbread! I could eat it all by myself as a meal or split it with a salad or something else.  You could serve it as a nibble at a dinner party. It was truly authentic and I truly enjoy the Maitre Pierre’s (AKA Trader Joe’s) Tarte d’Alsace. I recommend having a big glass of Alsatian Dry Riesling with this as a perfect pairing and I am going to rate this 9 Bells!

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21 Replies to “Trader Joe’s (Maitre Pierre) Tarte D’Alace”

  1. The Alsace region has indeed gone between German and French rule several times in the last 150 years. Despite many aspects of German roots in its culture, the allegiance of its people is to France, especially given the horror of annexation during WWII. The tart is the local Alsatian language is “Flammekueche”. It is a delightful onion tart with creme fraiche and bacon. Lovely and I can’t wait to try the Trader Joe’s version. This tart is also seen in Germany across the Rhine. Because of the fierce fighting there during WWII, there are several American military cemeteries in the area. See them when you are there. Alsatians love sauerkraut with smoked meats. They enjoy it as a main course, not just a condiment. Try that too when you go.

  2. As I mentioned in the review, this is the real deal from a company out of Strasbourg. You can probably find the same product on the selves of markets in the Alsace.

    BTW, when I last visited we stayed in Kaysersberg and loved hiking around the hills and vineyards near there. One day we walked the couple of miles to Kientzheim just down the road and visited Paul Blanck winery http://www.blanck.com/. Kientzheim is just a small collection of homes with hardly a shop or restaurant, but right in the heart of wine country. In the middle of town is an old WWII American tank and just up the hill was a monument to the Americans. There was a fairly big battle just up the hill and it destroyed many of the vineyards.The guy at the winery told us it took them two or more years to clear all the bombs and mines. It’s a fabulous, magical place if you can ever visit. The nice thing is that it’s not high on many American list of a vacation destination so you see more Europeans and Asians.

  3. I was in Paris last week and visited the Marche d’Aligre on Sunday. I stopped in at one of the shops there to browse and it turned out to be an Alsatian grocery. In my conversations with the shopkeeper she brought up the fact that her father’s company dealt with Trader Joe’s. She showed me the tart — she made a point of the turned crust on the edges being an important identity detail. And yes, she said there are two kinds – ham and mushrooms. Vive Trader Joe’s!

  4. Recently while on a trip to NY I had one of your Tarte D Alsace flat bread, and it was wonderful! I live in Anchorage Alaska and was wondering if you have your products available in any markets in my area?

      1. Thank you for your reply. Your company should look at Anchorage for a location. There are many large chain stores in Anchorage, Costco, Sam’s Club, Walmart, and restaurants such as Olive Garden and Sullivan’s Steak house. Check it out, you might be suprised! I belive I just read the average income in Anchorage is 72K with a population of about 350K. As you said, I’ll be hoping!

  5. OMG I promised myself to only eat half…uh, that definitely did not work. The flavors are absolutely awesome. So glad I stuck to my diet earlier in the day so this did not even bring me up to my full 1200. Yea!! Try it, go ahead, you’ll like it!

  6. I love this tarte flambée. When I lived in London I’d buy the very same tarte at Waitrose, a luxury chain of grocery stores there. So you can imagine my delight when I discovered it at TJ’s. I eat a whole one for dinner, but it goes in the oven with a sprinkling of dried jalapeño every time 😉

    1. I visited the Alsace about 12 years ago and we ate Tarte Flambe until it was coming out of our ears! We loved it! This is a descent imitation of that. Not the real thing but the flavors are still good!

  7. I feel this product is the best thing I have ever eaten from the frozen food aisle.
    If I were sitting at a nice restaurant and they brought this out to me as a flatbread appetizer I would be happy!!! GOOD STUFF

  8. Yes, it is delicious, but it also has added preservatives (nitrites) and caramel color added to the onions. Not the Trader Joe’s standard for all natural foods, in my opinion.

  9. Hi-
    I have purchased several of the ham, onion and Gruyere flat breads from Trader Joes, they really are delicious. I follow the cooking instruction on the box but…. the crust never really gets done except on the edges. It’s very flimsy and uncooked, even when the rest of the flatbread is overlooked. None of them have ever gotten crispy, only the outside crust. And the rest just tears off, and the toppings slide of when you try and pick up a piece of any decent size.

    These are not cheap. They are delicious, but not cheap. I feel like you need to come of with better instructions or maybe include a tray for them to be cooked on that would actually get the crust cooked. I’ve wasted a lot of them because they don’t cook well so that was money down the drain and not much flatbread left to eat as a result.

    Anyone have and suggestions on cooking them so the entire crust actually does get crispy?

    1. When the box directions say to pre-heat the oven for 10 minutes I throw the baking sheet in to pre-heat, too. I also increase the oven temperature by 25 degrees. Then when you put the tarte on the pre-heated pan it sizzles and gets a jump start. My crusts turn out crispy and golden brown yet tender and toothsome. Hope this helps!

  10. Had one for lunch today -one of our 3 ‘go to’ TJ items. There used to be 4 until Pepperidge Farms made TJ drop the Belgian Chocolate cookies.

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