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Farmers Market Find: Scrumptious Beautiful Eats By Jinou Edible Art

Posted By Karen Young On April 12, 2011 @ 11:21 pm In Farmers Markets,Featured,Food,Food Trucks,My Daily Find,Restaurants,spotlight,Sweets | 4 Comments


The reason I like strolling through farmers markets is that each experience is different. Sometimes I go for a specific purpose and grab what I need. Other times I peruse through the stalls of fruits, vegetables and locally produced goods and wares which brings back memories of travels or stirs up dreams. Finding Jinou Edible Art was one of those times when I felt like I could’ve been in a patisserie in the south of France.

Croix de Lorrraine Photos: Karen Young

Jinou Nikjou is the talent behind the beautiful handcrafted baked creations I found arranged on an unassuming table at the Studio City Farmers Market one Sunday (she is also at Calabasas on Saturdays). Nikjou was born in Iran, but raised in France where received a Masters Degree in Fine Arts from the University of Paris. She parlayed her art into pastry making and the combination makes her works almost too pretty to eat.

Quiches come with and without crust.

What initially caught my eye were cakes with designs etched in powdered sugar — the Croix de Lorraine — a recipe from 17th century France made with only powdered organic almonds, sugar, egg whites, praline powder and vanilla. No egg yolks, flour or preservatives. This simple cake became popular in Lorraine, France and was originally decorated with a picture of the double cross of the Duke of Lorraine. Jinou only uses natural, market fresh ingredients with no preservatives in all her products.

Much of Jinou’s goods have a historical significance. In fact, she has background information about a few printed out on parchment looking paper to relay history — and is certain to tell all willing customers about it.

Trois Freres and other tarts.

I learned that the chocolate soufflé is a French invention of the late 18th century and literally means “puffed up,” while the Trois Freres (Three Brothers Walnut Cake) was created by three brothers in the 18th century who opened a Paris shop that began a dynasty of pastry chefs.

Jinou creates a variety of desserts including tarts, muffins, puddings and organic oat bars. While entranced by the desserts, especially the dark chocolate cake and chocolate soufflé with fresh berries (and I’m not usually a chocolate lover), I am also a bit obsessed with her quiches.

Jinou is an artist and pastry chef.

The quiches are the most beautiful I’ve seen with herbs arranged in flowery designs or vegetables and cheese  placed in carefully arranged patterns. She uses a combination of ingredients in the various quiches, including tomatoes, spinach, caramelized onion, sundried tomatoes, mushrooms and a variety of cheeses.  They come with crusts and without. She also makes small lasagnas. One is more traditional in the Italian vein, while another is French with a rich béchamel sauce.

Jinou Edible Art is my new favorite find — with a combination of beauty and taste – I can almost channel that little patisserie I once visited in Aix-En-Provence. Tres bien.

Quiches run $6 (sampler) to $12. Baked desserts are $3-$27, Lasagna (for 1-2) $6.

Jinou Edible Art is available on Sundays at the Studio City Farmers Market, Saturday at the Calabasas  Farmers MarketCooportunity in Santa Monica, Full O’Life Burbank.

Karen Young is the Founder/Editor of My Daily Find. Email: karen@mydailyfind.com

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