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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pumpkin Soufflé

About 5 minutes out of the oven
You can make this in a large ramekin that will serve about 4 people as a side and is quite nice to bring to the table.  Otherwise, you can use small individual ramekins and serve it as a starter with a small salad.   Guaranteed ooh and ah's!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Really Easy Chocolate Soufflé

There are a few dishes that people will always be really impressed with.  A soufflé is one of them.  I think it is just because so much has been said about how hard it is to cook them and that it takes just a small shock to send it tumbling.  I tried making soufflé a little while ago and have had only success with what I think is a really easy dish to prepare.  Lots of bang for your buck (or effort) on this one!  Go ahead and try it. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Smoked Cream

Add a piece of crisp smoked bacon for texture and roasted seeds

This is one of those great recipes that is easy and can be dressed up a bit for any occasion. The flavor of the soup is really good and the smoked cream adds a little subtle surprise in the mouth. We served this at a cocktail party in little shot glasses with a breadstick and it was quite a hit.

Infusing milk and cream are quite popular in France.  The principle is always the same in that the liquid is heated and left to cool with the ingredients it is being infused with. 

Sour Cream Pumpkin Bread

This pumpkin bread is a staple in our house.  I make it and everyone eats it for breakfast.  By day two, there is usually nothing left.  It's also great for an afternoon break with a cup of coffee or tea (if I can get to it in time).  The sour cream makes it very moist and is lighter than using only oil

Monday, November 29, 2010

Pumpkin Pie with Nutmeg Infused Crème Fraîche

It's that time of year again.  Actually, the height of the pumpkin season has probably come and gone but here are a few of the recipes I tried this year.  All in all they were very well received with a big honorable mention going to the Pumpkin Soufflé.  My daughters asked me to make it over and over again which was a pleasure because it is so simple.

Here is the classic pumpkin pie.  Dot the infused crème fraîche on the filling and then drag a toothpick through it to create a heart shape before baking.  You can do better than this one by making the dots more regular in shape and following a pattern.  

Also, try to use a pie dish with a removable base so that you can easily remove the whole pie to put on a stand - this looks very nice and is easier to cut.

A Sunday in Paris

Wondering what to do in Paris on a Sunday?  Le Marais

Still considered a day of rest to be spent with family, Sundays in Paris can be a little difficult for North Americans.  Many things are closed and even finding a restaurant can be a challenge.   The normal tourist spots however are all open and so are the museums  - oh by the way, museums on the first Sunday of each month are free.  Crowds can be a problem and sometimes you just need something a little different.

We quickly were told to check out Le Marais.  This is a charming neighbourhood located in the 3rd and 4th arrondissements.  What a find that has become a part of our Sunday routine.   We are regulars on la rue des Rosiers where we venture to shop and eat the best falafel in Paris at L'As du Falafel.   You'll have to wait in line to get in for a sit-down meal but the wait is usually short and a great opportunity to people watch.  If you don't have time to wait, just grab a falafel pita sandwich to go.  Then you can stroll and eat at the same time.  You'll be joined by many!


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Really Easy Chocolate Mousse

Really light and airy with no whipped cream!

We were served this desert at a friend's house.  It was served just like this in a big bowl and we helped ourselves.  It was so good and she assured me so easy to make.  As it turns out, it is one of the easiest recipes I've ever made and it's quite low-carb friendly as you can easily omit the sugar.  I love these kind of recipes that have a big bang for the little effort they require.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Great Restaurants in Paris

chef02.jpg 18.4KGreat Paris Restaurants

It takes years of hits and misses to put together a list of great restaurants to suit every mood.  It's hard to find a bad restaurant in Paris but here is a list of our all time favorites:

Price review for a meal consisting of appetizer + meal  OR  meal + desert:
                        $ = 10 - 25 euros per person without wine or drinks
                      $$ =  25 - 40 euros per person without wine or drinks
                    $$$ =  40 - 60 euros per person without wine or drinks
                  $$$$ = over 60 euros per person without wine or drinks

Count about 5 - 8 euros for a glass of wine.

Our Number One -  Casual Chic  French  $$
LE HIDE:  This is a small bistrot in the 17th arrondissement.  It is owned by a wonderful chef name Koba who is classically trained in French cuisine but adds a little asian spirit to his cooking.  The food is amazing, and the prices are very reasonable.  Our favorites are the crayfish raviolis, anything with leeks or asparagus and the scallops.  The staff are very friendly and bilingual.  It is a small, cozy place that is always completely full - so make reservations.  You'll want to go back again and again.  Great place to go with friends or as a couple.  They don't take large groups of more than 7 people.

Closed on Saturday lunch and Sunday