Monday, December 24, 2007

Chocolate Yule Log

Note: the French version is here.

Sorry dear readers I don't have time to write the English version. I just did the French one (here). I'm in a motel up North New-York city on our way to Quebec to celebrate Christmas ( a white one I guess). I will do it as soon as I have time, I promise!!

Also I would like to say: BRAVO to the Daring Bakers who (not like me, I didn't have time to bake this month, was traveling too much: Nantes, Madrid, New-York, Quebec!) fulfilled the challenge!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Foie gras on mango French toast

Note: the French version is here on my other food blog.

A week ago I took my second cooking class at Lenôtre school in Cannes. The first class was all about macarons, those lovely cute French cookies.
Lenôtre is a top notch pastry shop in Cannes, on rue d' Antibes not far away from La Croisette. Gaston Lenôtre is a top pastry chef. He wrote THE DEFINITE pastry book.
Lenôtre's school trained the best stars in pastry like Pierre Hermé. I could write endlessly about Lenôtre, I have such admiration about the art of pastry developed by this talented chef. Oh! one more thing before diving into Christmas menu, don't forget to donate to Menu for Hope IV, I am giving away a prize (code EU28): a lunch date at ... Lenôtre, you bet!

In France, Foie gras is truly a luxurious ingredient and a synonym for celebration!! Adding it to your menu will guarantee your feast to be a true success!

Here I am sharing with you a great Holidays appetizer: foie gras on mango French toast.

Ingredients: (for a party of 6)
- one Foie Gras lobe around 550g (or 6 "steak" like pieces)
- 1dl (6 to 7 tablespoons) of Porto wine
- 1/2 dl (3 to 4 tablespoons) of Xeres vinegar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup of whole milk (please no skim milk here!)
- half a baguette
- 1 mango
- coarse ground pepper
- kosher salt and regular salt

1- Remove from the foie gras lobe all the visible nerves. Cut into 6 equal "steak" like pieces. Place into the fridge.
2- Peel and cut the mango into thin slices.
3- Heat olive oil in a skillet, add the mango slices with coarse ground pepper and regular salt. Set aside.
4- Make French toasts (in France we call it pain perdu, it was a classic at my house. It's wonderful to transform old bread into a delicious dessert or snack): beat the egg with milk. Dip the slices of bread into the egg mixture (remember to flip them so both sides are coated). Place them into a skillet with warm olive oil, at medium heat.
5- Reduce the Porto wine and Xeres vinegar at medium heat.
6- Criss-cross the foie gras with fine cuts, add salt and pepper. Cook them like the French toasts in a skillet and olive oil.
7- Present like in the picture :-)


Note: the French version is here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Goat cheese and mache risotto

Note: the French version is here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth.

Here I'm back after few adventures in the kitchen (a great class at Lenôtre school in Cannes all about Christmas menu and French Holidays cooking, stay tuned for more!), a nasty illness, a surprise Birthday party to organize, the return of my husband and ... work!

After that busy period there was very little time left to post my participation for Aurely's Food blog game :"Blog me your recipe". It's pretty simple and amusing too. Participants have to "steal" a recipe from the blog Aurely points you to and badaboom you have to rush to your kitchen and redo one recipe.
Flo from "Un Flo de bonnes choses"already stolen one of my cream split peas and bacon soup.
My mission was to dig into a great blog: "Beau à la louche" and pick a victim err... a recipe.
I took my pick and the winner is: "Goat cheese and baby spinach risotto"
I followed the recipe but replaced the spinach by mache salad (a seasonal pick!)

Ingredients: (for party of 2)
- 120g (3/4 cup) of Arborio rice
- 1/2 onion
- 400ml (1 and 3/4 cup) of chicken broth (made from Kub bouillon cube dissolved in water)
- 50ml (around 1/4 cup) of white wine
- one Crottin de Chavignol (goat cheese)
- 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese
- olive oil (aka e.v.o.o.)
- 1 cup of mache salad or baby spinach

1- Heat olive oil in a skillet and add the cut out onion.
2- Add the rice and mix till the rice is coated with oil.
3- Pour the broth ladle by ladle. Note: wait for the rice to absorb the broth before pouring the next ladle.
4- When the risotto rice is cooked add the cut out goat cheese, mache salad and Parmesan. Mix few minutes at low heat.

Note: the French version is here.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Menu for Hope IV

Note: French version of this post here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth.

You may not be familiar with menu for hope even if this is the fourth edition :-)
Menu for Hope is an annual fund raising event in support of the UN World Food Program. One wonderful blogger is behind all this charitable movement: Pim. She's blogging in English from Chez Pim. The devastating tsunami in Southeast Asia inspired her to find a way to help

Each year, food bloggers from all over the world join forces to host the Menu for Hope online offering an array of delectable culinary prizes: books, cooking gears or cooking dates. For every US$10, the donor receive a virtual raffle ticket toward a prize of their choice. All you need is $10 and a bit of luck.

As Pim says:" We may never eradicate hunger from the face of the earth, but why should that stop us from trying?"

This year as usual also the money will be given to the UN' s Worl Food Programme and in particular Lesotho children.

Here in Europe menu for hope is managed by Fanny from the lovely Foofbeam blog. She centralized all the info.

Ok, and you may say what is Babeth offering? Well, I'm offering a lunch date with me at Café Lenôtre in Cannes (Lenôtre is one of best pastry in France). If you' re living in the area or I'm sure you may plan a trip to the French Riviera (you know we just kidnapped the sun: is always shinning). See at the end of this post how you can win a lunch date with me in Cannes :-)

To bid and win go to: firstgiving web site here and my code prize is" EU28.
Winners will be announced the 9th of January on Pim' s blog.

Hope we all participate a little to help a lot!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Candied onion recipe!

Note: the French version is here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth.

Once upon a time a plump onion got lost in my kitchen, or how once I bought a bulky onion for clear conscience (healthy-wise). If you know me a little bit you that I have a dreadful aversion for raw onions. Pissaladière (typically French Riviera onion tart) is fine in my menu, more than fine actually :-).

This onion stays a while on my kitchen counter; we looked at each other a lot. I really didn't know what to do with it. And one day: Bingo! (No I didn't see the mega lottery winning numbers) I remembered that I have somewhere a recipe of candied onion in kosher salt. I just needed to find the recipe now ...

Result is very nice: visually and taste wise (I must admit I will re-try this recipe for sure). The onion is just sweet like it should not too much. I had it with a chicory salad and real vinaigrette (olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper whisked in a bowl). I'm sure it will be also perfect with mayonnaise.

Before giving you my recipe I would like to talk a little bit about my next post. I spent a full afternoon at Lenôtre école gourmande in Cannes (where I learned how to make beautiful macarons) cooking a full Christmas diner. Stay tuned :-)

-one onion
-kosher salt (gros sel)

1- Preheat the oven at 425 F.
2- Place in an oven-proof pan a next of kosher salt.
3- Cut the base of the onion and in the flesh make a cross with your knife.
4- Put in the oven for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 300 F and let it cook for 1 hour.

For oven conversions I use this very useful link from Food Network.
Note: the French version is here.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Garlic pork roast with its crispy potatoes

Note: The French version is here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth.

As I
promised, after my charitable duty yesterday and Brad Pitt's picture showing :-) today will be all about food.

I love to have diner parties at home (and to go to, in that case I don't have to clean the dishes (my kitchen is too tiny to let a dishwasher in, ARGHHH)). That started a long long time ago (well not so long, I'm not that old anyway) when I was in College, then continued and grow when I was a Californian and never dies.

In College diner parties were pretty simple and frugal. Me and my friends didn't have any money. So we had: pasta parties, tartiflette parties (a typical French dish from the mountains, not to mention that it's a winter dish) and crepes parties. Very often I baked a cake, chocolate or fruit one (let me confess: chocolate was and still is my favorite).

Then in California I was part of a joyful Wednesday diners group. I was the only French in the middle of bunch of Americans. I was making a serious effort to cook French food for them, and I was kind of proud of my results: cheese souffle, creme anglaise, creme brulee, quiche lorraine and so on. Also I will never be grateful enough to them for being so patient with my broken English. I learn a lot among them. Thanks guys!

The other day I was having a small diner party at home with 2 guy friends of mine. So as you know men need their piece of meat, no way I would have been able to serve girly food like beet mouse or fat-free tatziki. So that night, on the menu we had: fresh green salad, garlic pork roast with its crispy potatoes and a chocolate tart (recipe another day my dear readers, it will come this is on of my classics).

Garlic pork roast with its crispy potatoes:
-1 3lbs boneless pork loin roast (larded one so the meat keeps all its moist)
-8 to 10 garlic cloves
-6 medium potatoes
-dry thyme
-sea salt and pepper

1- Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2- Undress the garlic cloves.
3- Peel and cut into slices the potatoes.
4- Place the pork roast in a buttered roasting pan.
5- With a knife pick the meat for each garlic cloves and introduce the cloves into them. (by picking with a knife it's easier introduce the cloves inside the meat). Put aside 3 or 4 cloves.
6- Place the potatoes' slices around the roast; put the remaining cloves on top of the potatoes.
7- Sprinkle with thyme, pepper and salt.
8- Roast it uncovered in the oven, 20 to 30 minutes per pound.

Bon appétit!

Other pork recipes:
- cured pork with green lentils
- Carrot and turnip pork roast

Note: The French version is here.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Brad Pitt' s Christmas wish!

(Today Show, NBC picture)

Oh, I hear you even from my screen, not again she skipped the recipe! Yes but I promise, tomorrow I will publish a great one, a so-typically French one!
Anyway let's come back to our raviolis.
What is Brad Pitt's Christmas wish hum?
Well the guy, quite a normal guy (LOL) is part of a great and generous charitable project: the Make It Right project (see the web site here). And on his Christmas list there is: a home for everybody in New Orleans!

You can, like me, watch Brad chatting with Ann Curry on yesterday Today Show (video here).
If you are still here, and did not rush to watch Bradddddddddddd :-) the Make it Right project is to rebuild in a devastated area: New Orleans (remember Katrina and what happened to New Orleans? The city underwater, people in shelters or in the streets with no water, no food).

The MIR project is to build green affordable houses in New-Orleans. They even thought about new possible flooding and houses will be built on piles.
On the MIR project web site you can visit a virtual house that will be built in NoLa.
It's Christmas time so why not to donate a little, there is no minimum and what I really like it that you can while visiting the virtual house donate for a compact fluorescent bulb ($5), or a rooftop solar system or even adopt a house i.e. buy the full house.
Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Plastic is not eco-friendly!

Note: The French version of this post is here.

Today on our blog-plate no recipe but some exposure for some great and smart eco-friendly products that I love! I'm doing it for free; I'm not paid and will not receive any free gifts, not even a diner with Bruce Willis :-). I just love their products, smart and eco-friendly!
Are you, like me fed up by all the plastics cups coming out of your company coffee machine? Plastic cups that are going straight to the trash.
Are you, like me sick of all the plastic plates/forks/spoons/cups that you put into the trashcan after a BBQ/party or picnic?

Well my friend I found the solution: BIOSYLVA products! (Ok their web-page is only in French but you can contact them or me to have more info)
Biosylva plates/cups and silverware are disposable like your red or blue plastic cups but are not made from oil and are not taking centuries to disappear! They are 100% compostable, on other great aspect of Biosylva: the company respect eco-friendly processes.
And my dear friends it's not more expensive than plastic! How great is that?

Now let's have a look at their products:

Palm tree wood plates:

Sugar cane plates, bowls and cups (can you believe it: sugar cane plates! and they can go into the microwave! no it's not Sci-Fi):

Cellulose cups (organic cellulose):

So if you're like their products as much I love them why not talking about them at work, asking your favorite store to register them.
To contact them go to their web site: BIOSYLVA

Note: The French version of this post is here.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Soup season: cream split peas and bacon soup

Note: For the French version it's here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth.

God it's cold outside! Ok I must admit I might be a little chilly and I turn into an ice-cube very easily. Let face it: even here in Antibes under the palm trees I think it's freezing outside ... and I'm going to New-York and Quebec for the Holidays ... crazy me!
If you're like me: freezing, a little home made cream soup will warm you up, I promise and with not a lot of work!
After the cream Hakkaido squash soup featured here, let me introduce: the cream split peas and bacon soup ("velouté de pois-cassés et lardons" ). I had the idea to add bacon to the split peas after having a frozen chickpeas soup from "Mister Picard" (if you live in France you know who is Mister Picard: the king of frozen food, it's a store chain, expensive but meal saver).

- 2 cups and a half of split peas (around 250g)
- 4 carrots
- 4 slices of bacon (150g of "lardons")
- 1 cup (around 20cl) of dairy cream
- 30 seeds of coriander
- ginger

1- Cook the split peas according to the instructions.
2- Peel and cut the carrots.
3- Cook the bacon.
4- Scoop out the mix carrots and slip peas then add the cream, the ginger and the seeds and coriander to the food processor.

You can add to your bowl a drop of chestnut oil and croutons.

Other soups recipes:
- Jerusalem artichoke soup
- soup at Tiffany
- cream hokkaido squash soup

Note: For the French version it's here.

Monday, November 26, 2007

[Daring bakers] Tender potato bread

I'm so happy to post today! I'm now a "Daring bakers" member, I'm so proud!
Today all the Daring Bakers members are posting the same recipe, we all prepared, baked in secret. So today on the menu we have: Tender Potato Bread! Let's celebrate because: it's my first home-made bread ever and it looks like a bread from the bakery (I'm even more proud: I did not use any help: human or machine).

Here my Bread (and Oh my God it's soooooooo yummmy!):

The recipe (is from Tana):
4 medium to large floury (baking) potatoes (peeled and cut into chunks)
4 cups water (keep the potato's cooking water) (950ml)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons active dry yeast (16g )
6 ½ cups to 8 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour (1kg)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened (25g)
1 cup whole wheat flour (150g)

1-Mix & stir yeast into cooled water and mashed potatoes & water and let stand 5 minutes.
Then mix in 2 cups of all-purpose flour and mix. Allow to rest several minutes.

2-Sprinkle on the remaining 1 tablespoon salt and the softened butter; mix well. Add the 1 cup whole wheat flour, stir briefly.

3-Add 2 cups of the unbleached all-purpose flour and stir until all the flour has been incorporated.
Note: At this point you have used 4 cups of the possible 8 ½ cups suggested by the recipe.

4-Turn the dough out onto a generously floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, incorporating flour as needed to prevent sticking. The dough will be very sticky to begin with, but as it takes up more flour from the kneading surface, it will become easier to handle; use a dough scraper to keep your surface clean. The kneaded dough will still be very soft.

5-Place the dough in a large clean bowl or your rising container of choice, cover with plastic wrap or lid, and let rise about 2 hours or until doubled in volume.

6-Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead gently several minutes. It will be moist and a little sticky.

You can shape your bread into a large loaf, rolls or focaccia!

Oven: preheat to 450°F/230°C
Bake rolls until golden, about 30 minutes.
Bake the small loaf for about 40 minutes.
Bake the large loaf for about 50 minutes.

Note: For the French version it's here.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Restaurant review "La taille de guêpe", Antibes

NOTE: the French version is here on my other food blog

Let's eat flowers!
For all of you who wants to have a tasty lunch while keeping control of calories, here's a good spot here in Antibes, on the French Riviera.

I went on a mission with my 2 lunch-girlfriends (as you may know, I am working from home and my husband lives in New-York, as a matter of fact I don't see a lot of real people during the day and I'm really in need to go out for lunch/coffee/diner) : we tested this restaurant for you!

Food is tasty, plates are colorful and it's not your typical lunch place. You'll find the famous flower salad and a lot of sprouts or quinoa on its menu.

The retaurant is located in the old village of Antibes in a very cute and quite boho street (walking distance from my place :-) ).
Restaurant La taille de guêpe, 24 rue de Fersen, 06600 Antibes (more details below)

For lunch expect to pay around 15 euros (pretty decent price for Cote d'Azur standards).
For such a long time I wanted to test and taste flowers, I've been seen a lot of flowers on farmers markets in California or some food blogs. Now I can say that I did it, Yes!

With Isa and Sandrine (my lunch buddies) we had:

- flower salad (salade de fleurs): a mix of mesclun , sprouts and flowers with walnut oil. It's like still-dead art on a plate: colorful and well presented (sorry guys but I took those pictures with my cell phone and the quality -is it allowed to say quality in this matter?- is crappy)

-then 2 of us had white fish (poisson) and the other one chicken breast. They were served with brown rice, sprouts, veggies and flowers.

-and for dessert: a lovely lavender chocolate cream (DELICIOUSLY CHOCOLATE).

If you're visiting Antibes you have to try this spot!

NOTE: the French version is here.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Controversy in the cookbook aisle!

I am reading and watching, as much as I can, American newspapers and TV shows. And around a great idea: having American kids eat healthier and fighting against children obesity, a great controversy arose. Two women, who didn’t know each other existence before all that controversial media attention:
- on one side Jessica Seinfeld, well connected, the wife of you-know-who
- and the other side Missy Chase Lapine a former publisher and founder of BabySpa
There is a lot of similarity in their books and recipes and one can easily questioned why those 2 books got on bookstores shelves at the same time ... Honestly I don't have the answer on who copied on whom or if it's only one of those celestial coincidence!
I did talked about Jessica Seinfeld book: Deceptively delicious in a previous post, so I though it would be fair to talk as well about Missy Chase Lapine book: The Sneaky Chef.

If you want to make your own idea about the controversy you can read this article in the New-York times or watch here the Today Show.

After all for years mums were pretty inventive to get their little monsters -euh picture-perfect kids :-)- to eat veggies. Those 2 women are not the Einstein inventors of the purée method, but we can give them the credit for talking about really simple easy to apply at home methods to have healthier meals.
I just have to say: You go girls!

Here one recipe from The Sneaky Chef book (I gave one from Deceptively Delicious in my previous post)

Sneaky Chef masterful mac 'n' cheese

Ingredients (4-6 servings)

Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4: White Puree

2 cups cauliflower, cut into florets
2 small to medium zucchini, peeled and rough-chopped
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons water, if necessary

Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2: Orange Puree

1 medium sweet potato or yam, peeled and rough-chopped
3 medium to large carrots, peeled and sliced into thick chunks
2-3 tablespoons water


1/2 pound macaroni (preferably whole-wheat blend)
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup White Puree (See Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4)
1/4 cup Orange Puree (see Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups grated Colby or Cheddar cheese
Optional extra boost: 2 large eggs


Sneaky Chef Make-Ahead Recipe No. 2 — Orange Puree: In a medium pot, cover carrots and potatoes with cold water and boil for about 20 minutes until yams, and especially carrots, are very tender. If the carrots aren’t thoroughly cooked, they’ll leave telltale little nuggets of vegetable, which will reveal their presence (a gigantic no-no for the sneaky chef).

Drain the potatoes and carrots and put them in the food processor with two tablespoons of water. Puree on high until smooth; no pieces of carrots or potatoes should remain. Stop occasionally to push the contents from the top to the bottom. If necessary, use the third tablespoon of water to make a smooth puree, but the less water the better.

This makes about 2 cups of puree. Double the recipe if you want to store another cup of puree. Store in refrigerator up to three days, or freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

Sneaky Chef Make-Ahead Recipe No. 4 — White Puree: Steam cauliflower in a vegetable steamer over 2 inches of water, using a tightly covered pot, for about 10 to 12 minutes until very tender. Alternatively, place cauliflower in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with water, and microwave on high for 8 to 10 minutes until very tender.

While waiting for the cauliflower to finish steaming, start to pulse the raw peeled zucchini with the lemon juice only (no water at this point). Drain the cooked cauliflower. Working in batches if necessary, add it to the pulsed zucchini in the bowl of the food processor with one tablespoon of water. Puree on high until smooth. Stop occasionally and push contents from the top to the bottom. If necessary, use the second tablespoon of water to make a smooth (but not wet) puree.

Makes about 2 cups of puree. Double recipe if you want to store even more, which can be done in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze 1/4-cup portions in sealed plastic bags or small plastic containers.

For macaroni: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch-square baking pan.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook according to the package directions, until firm and slightly undercooked. Drain and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the milk with the White Puree and salt. (If using eggs, whisk them in with the milk mixture.) Put half of the macaroni into the baking pan and top with half the Cheddar (or Colby) cheese. Next, layer with the rest of the macaroni, and then pour the milk mixture over the top, finishing with the last of the cheese on top.

Friday, November 9, 2007

New discovery at the farmers market: chayote

Note: for the French version it's here!

On Saturday I was strolling down the farmers market, market installed just down my building. I must say that it' s pretty convenient, but really noisy and not good for sleeping late. I was daydreaming when a weird flashy-green thing came across. I immediately came back from my dream and ask the old farmer what that green stuff was. He simply and nicely replied to me "It's a chayote and it’s very yummy sautéed". I wouldn’t have lost my savings buying the greeny stuff - for one the old guy was asking for 75 cents (of euros but still not expensive).
So I tried my luck and bought one. The old farmer gave on more advice (just like in a movie) " to peel it effortlessly cut it into quarters and then peel it".

So I was back at home with my usual basket loaded with organic tomatoes, rucola, zucchini and one chayote. In front of the chayote with a knife in one hand I was thinking "à quelle sauce" (just meaning: how) I would eat it. I prepared it with eggplants, bell peppers and extra virgin oil (e.v.o.o as on TV star would say) and Provence herbs.
Review: When I cut it it was firm and crunchy and watery, and for the taste: well not really pronounced.

Apparently in La Réunion they prepare chayote it in cakes. I would try again for sure but into a cake preparation.

Note: for the French version it's here!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Squash season, cream Hakkaido squash soup

Note: For the French version it' s on my French blog: " La cuisine de Babeth"

It's fall season and I love it! All the warm colors: the vibrant red and orange warm up our mind and spirit while the weather is starting to become chilly. It's the perfect time to become a child again (if you were ever a grown-up anyway) and run into the falling leaves.

At this time of the year, near Halloween I always got nostalgic of my years in California where at every single cross sections pumpkins patches open, and all homes are decorated with carved pumpkins.

While visiting my parents in the Northern-West part of France, I went to help my mother to get her weekly AMAP basket. AMAP (Association pour le maintien de l' agriculture paysanne) is a French nationwide association promoting sustainable organic agriculture. My parents are members and each week they got a basket full of organic vegetables grown nearby so no outrageous amount of gas are used (because everything is coming from not too far away of consumers' homes). In her basket my mom got carrots, leaks, cauliflower, spinach and lovely orange Hokkaido squash ("potimarron").

The squash was decorating my parents' kitchen beautifully until I transformed it into cream soup ("velouté" ). The recipe I' ve created is a tasty vegetarian recipe with an Asian twist to it (coconut milk added).

- 1 Hokkaido squashes (about 2kg)
- 2 leaks
- 2 spoons of powered ginger
- 30 seeds of coriander
- 2 liters of water
- 5 spoons of corn starch (in France we call it Maizena)
- 200ml of coconut milk (about half of a can)

1- Remove the seeds and the heart of the squashes. Our squashes were organic so no need to peel them, just clean them. Cut into pieces the squashes.
2- Clean and cut the leaks.
3- In a pot combine the squashes, leaks, ginger and coriander. Sprinkle with the corn starch.
4- Add the boiling water.
5- When in the pot it's boiling again, cover with the pot lid and let it cook for 30 minutes at medium heat.
6- Scoop out the mix then add the coconut milk to the food processor.

Other soups recipes:
- Jerusalem artichoke soup
- soup at Tiffany
- cream slip peas and bacon

Note: For the French version it' s on my French blog: " La cuisine de Babeth"

Thursday, October 18, 2007

[pink ribbon] pink recipe contest

If you like my beet mousse recipe you can vote for me on Couture Cupcakes: here
or any other pink recipes featured you may like!

Monday, October 15, 2007

[Pink ribbon] beet mousse

Note: the French version of this recipe is here on my other food blog.

Fall is the season for Breast Cancer awareness, in France we' re having " la chaine rose" an e-cookbook realized by bloggers with only pink recipes. You can download it from the pink flashing widget on top of this post (see my previous post).

And while reading food blogs in English I realized that Couture Cupcakes is having a pink recipe contest. I wanted to be part of it because breast cancer is running in my family and in my entourage, also I got really scared last year when my doctor send me to do a mammography and a biopsy because I have some solid -alien- stuffs inside my breasts. Thanks God it's not malicious, but I still need to check with doctors every other years.

But I didn't want to use the same recipe as the one I used while participating of the French e-cookbook (if you' re curious see page 80 of it) so I dig into the recipes I have and already took pictures of (did not have enough time to create a brand new recipe). And Eureka! my beet mousse is pink and one of my favorite dip mousse.

Here a very fresh and original recipe.With this red dipping sauce you will bluff your guests I promise! And the good part is that it's a very light dip (much lighter than tapenade(olive paste made here in South of France and very popular for "Apéro") for instance).


- 2 beautiful red beets already cooked
- 1 generous table spoon with of dairy fresh cream
- 1 onion
- olive oil (e.v.o.o as would say Rachel Ray)
- 4 basil sheets
- salt and pepper


1- Cut the onion and cook it with olive oil in a pan.

2- In the food processor: put the beets, cooked onion, the cream, the basil, 1 table spoon of olive oil, salt and pepper

3- Et voilà c'est prét! Enjoy the dipping!

Bon appétit !!

Note: the French version of this recipe is here.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Deceptively delicious, Jessica Seinfeld cookbook

As you may know, if:
1- you know me
2- you read me often :-)
I live in France on the beautiful French Riviera, in Antibes, but I love and miss America. I used to live in California few years ago.
I do miss many aspects of my life back there, my dear friends of course, ethnic food, weather ... and TV shows! I try not to be a TV junkie but I still like my TV shows and soap opera. Once in a while (OK, very often I must say to be honest) I watch on internet the Today Show, Oprah or Martha Stewart.

This week on the Today show and on Oprah I discovered a friendly woman talking about her first cookbook: Jessica Seinfeld, the wife of Jerry Seinfeld the great comedian.

In her book: Deceptively Delicious, Jessica Seinfeld reveals all the recipes and nifty tricks she created over the years feeding her children to have them eat the terrific: VEGETABLES ! Her children and other kids she feeds have for lunches and dinners: broccolis, cauliflowers, spinaches, sweet potatoes. Yes you 're not day-dreaming, they eat veggies! But she tricks them, her sneaky secret is to purée everything.

"The trick to all of this is hiding vegetable purees in your children's foods. You can match the color of the puree to the color of the food that your kid is used to eating." she says.

Well very ingenious and smart! And she also always put the real veggie on there plates so they are used to see veggies during meals and they assimilate that it's important to eat veggies. Also she controls portion sizes, a key in obesity growing propagation!

I don't have kids yet, but I think I will try her recipes and in the future use them!

You can find some of her recipes on Oprah web site and of course in her cookbook: Deceptively Delicious.

Here her recipe for chicken nuggets:

  • 1 cup whole-wheat, white or panko (Japanese) breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup flaxseed meal
  • 1 Tbsp. grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 cup broccoli or spinach or sweet potato or beet puree
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast or chicken tenders, rinsed, dried and cut into small chunks
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil

In a bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, flaxseed meal, Parmesan, paprika, garlic and onion powder on the paper or foil and mix well with your fingers.

In a shallow bowl, mix the vegetable puree and egg with a fork and set the bowl next to the breadcrumb mixture.

Sprinkle the chicken chunks with the salt. Dip the chunks into the egg mixture and then toss them in the breadcrumbs until completely coated.

Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and set over medium-high heat. When the skillet is hot, add the oil. Place the chicken nuggets in the skillet in a single layer, being careful not to crowd the pan, and cook until crisp and golden on one side, 3 to 4 minutes. Then turn and cook until the chicken is cooked through, golden brown and crisp all over, 4 to 5 minutes longer. (Cut through a piece to check that it's cooked through.) Serve warm.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Brunch in the city: Effy's Cafe (Manhattan)

Note: French version is on my other food blog: La cuisine de Babeth

A week ago I was in New-York visiting Mathieu, my husband. Yes we are living far away from each other. He is finishing his MBA and I am in France, Antibes (right on the French Riviera) waiting for a legal US work permit.
I spend a 3-day week-end in New-York and we enjoyed touristic stuffs, time spent with each other and some very New-York experiences.
In this post I want to write about a very nice cafe where we had brunch and coffee (coffee for me, I cannot live and even talk in the morning without my coffee joint), this cafe was perfect for us:
- it has outdoor tables
- very good coffee (my favorite is the cafe au lait)
- wonderful bagels
- salads and omelettes, must have for a brunch
- pricing is reasonable
- and it's recommended by Zagat

I just didn't like their cookies, not baked enough for me too much dough like.

Effy's Cafe
American, Mediterranean Style
1638 3rd avenue
(between 91st & 92nd )

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Nice surprise: the mailman delivered a cook-book

I'm very pleased to present you the gift I found this morning in a nice colorful yellow and red envelope: a desert cookbook. Ok people it's in French but I am very happy like a kid unwrapping a birthday package.
A blogger fellow of mine Isa launch a nice game through what we call here, in France, "la blogosphère" (meaning the blog community): sending a cookbook to a fellow blogger she picked and on the nice gesture receiving back one from a surprise fellow food blogger. She named her name Ze BlogBook. -Ze because as you know in France we do have trouble with the prononciation of: THE :-)
The mysterious sender is Lucyna blogging on Zapbook.
I'm not sure how she discovered my sweet tooth :-) may be, I just say may be -look at my angel smile- she read my French blog "La cuisine de Babeth" which features a loooot of sweet treats.
I just browsed through it but it look very well done with desserts for each seasons. Stay tuned for live tests of those recipes!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

For a good cause; breast cancer awareness

After a while I'm back here on "La vie in English".
Today no recipes but many pink recipes and for a good cause: to help an association that is helping women with breast cancer.
The recipes are in an e-book you can download by clicking on the pink label flashing on top of this post. The download of the e-cook book is free and legal, and every time someone is downloading it Roche (the pharmaceutical lab) agreed to donate 1 Euro to the French association: "Cancer du sein, parlons-en"
You can find my very small contribution to it page 80.
I'm sorry the cookbook is in French but I am volunteering to translate -on demand- recipes you want. You just need to email me and but patient ... (I have a daytime job which doesn't involve cooking or food talks)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Madeleines, original recipe!

Note: French version is here on my other food blog La cuisine de Babeth

I'm happy to start -well I hear you saying: what! it's her second post! Yes, you're right but it's the first recipe, and here it's a food blog after all :-)

Madeleines are shell shaped classical French soft cookies. They are old and so classic, every French kids have or had those for snack after school (what we call: quatre heure, it's our tea time but at 4 o'clock!). The madeleines recipe was created in the reign of Louis the XVth and every French literature lovers know about the little Proust madeleine, knows as an image of childhood memories.
I got this madeleine de Commercy recipe from my grand-mother's cookbook, it's old and yellowed enough to say that I will share with you the true, the only one, the original recipe!

Ingredients: (for about 30 madeleines)

-the madeleine pan if you don't know where you can find this essential French cuisine item go here
-250g of sugar
-250g of flour
-150g of unsalted butter
-6 eggs
- half of a tea spoon of baking soda (or levure chimique, the most famous one in France is in a pink paper package)
- 1 tea spoon of vanilla sugar ( or vanilla extract)


1- In a large saucepan under low heat melt the butter (it should never become brown), add the eggs and whisk.
2- Remove from the heat, add the sugar and whisk. When the mix is plain and light white add the flour, baking soda and vanilla sugar and whisk again. (Oh! I forgot to say that this recipe requires some whisking skills)
3- If you don't have a non-sticky madeleine pan brush it with butter onto it -your life will get definitely easier and it's way cheaper than a life coach- . Fill the molds with a spoon.
4- Place in a preheat oven for 10 minutes at 180 Celsius degree (350 F degree).

Note: You can replace the vanilla sugar by orange or lemon zest

Monday, September 17, 2007

First post! Yeah!

Hi, welcome on my blog in English ... Please be patient with me I am not native English speaking.
But it's also a great excuse I can mis-spell and having the excuse: "Oh, I'm sorry I'm French ..."

On this blog I will try to maintain your attention with posts about: food, cooking, restaurants, cooking books, French cuisine and Provence cuisine.

I'm already behind the French food blog: La cuisine de Babeth if you want to read me in French or just see the pictures.
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