We might have said goodbye to Monsieur Mattin last week on Top Chef, but that doesn't mean we've seen the end of Basque-love. Actually, even with Mattin's presence on the show, the region got some lip service, but we didn't hear much detail about the cuisine. If Tom Colicchio's blog is to be believed (and I'd guess it is, since he was actually there for the judging), part of Mattin's downfall was that he didn't really employ Basque flavors in his cooking on the show.
But I have a feeling we're about to see and hear a lot more about Basque flavors in the months to come, especially as it gets colder.
For example, this morning's Chowhound recipe newsletter showcased chicken Basquaise, a one-pot dish that looks pretty good (and easy), and that gets its Basquiness from spice-of-the-moment, piment d'Espelette. It's a very straightforward recipe and looks great in the pot - great enough that I think I might even make it for dinner here tonight.
In the meantime, though, au revoir "Frenchie." We'll miss the neckerchief.