Endives in the ham

DSCF0671It’s a family recipe, fast and good. To do it for 5 guests, you need : 5 endives, 5 slices of boiled ham and a béchamel sauce (2 oz of butter, 1 cup of flour, 2 cups of milk, salt and pepper), grated swiss cheese.

Cook your endives in a pan of boiling water during 30 minutes. To check it’s enough cooked, plant a fork in the endives. If you have no resistance, it’s ready. Drain the vegetables during 30 more minutes.

Prepare the béchamel sauce. Melt the butter in a pan, add the flour and mix. Add the milk and whip the preparation without stopping on a slowly fire, until the sauce thickens. Add salt and pepper at your convenience and mix.

Roll an endive in each slice of ham. Put it in an oven plate. Pour the sauce on endives in the ham. Add some grated cheese on the top and put the plate in the oven during 15 minutes with a temperature of 400 °F.

It’s ready to serve.

Bon appétit !

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Beef Bourguignon

DSCF0854The beef Bourguignon is a traditionnal french recipe for winter dinner. To prepare it, you need : 35 oz of shoulder of beef, 2 onions, 4 carrots, 10 potatoes, one bottle of burgundy wine (a first prize to cook, keep the good wine to drink with that dish :)), 2 tablespoon of oil, 1 oz of butter, 2 tablespoon of flour, salt and pepper.

 

Take a pot (in cast iron rather). Put the oil and make warm it slowly. During that time, cut the meat in medium-sized pieces. Brown the meat with the oil . During that time, cut the onions in small-sized pieces. When the meat has a nice brown, reserve it out of the pot and put the onions in the pot to cook. Reserve it out of the pot.

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Put the butter in the pot. When it’s melted, add the flour and mix it to obtain a thick sauce (a red as we said). When your sauce is ready, add the meat and onions, mix it with the sauce. Add the wine.

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Peel carrots, wash it and cut it in fine slices. Peel the potatoes, wash it and add it in the pot with the carrots. Put salt and pepper at your convenience. If you want to have an original result and to amaze your guests, you can replace classic potatoes by purple potatoes, as I made it in these recipe. If you want to have a more flavourful dish, you can add some mushrooms and diced bacon.

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Put the lid on the pot and let simmer during 2 hours, by mixing time to time.

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It’s ready to serve. Accompany this dish of very good burgundy wine, it will be just delicious.

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Bon appétit !

 

Quails in mandarins with a risotto in hazelnuts – Christmas Eve Menu 8/9

094My second main course was a success, specially the risotto.

To do it for 12 guests, you need :

For the meat : 12 quails, 12 mandarins, 6 vanilla pods, 6 tablespoon of honey, 6 tablespoon of oil, 1.5 oz of butter, salt and pepper.

Preheat your oven at 400 °F. In a big frying pan, warm the butter and roast the quails on each side. Peel the mandarins and separate the pieces of the fruits. Cut each vanilla pods in two, take all the vanilla powder and put it in a bowl. Add and mix in the bowl the oil and the honey with the vanilla.

In an oven plate, put the quails with the mandarins around. Baste the meat and mandarins with the vanilla sauce. Put the plate in the oven for 20 minutes. During that time, don’t forget to baste the dish with its own juice (every five minutes). It’s cooked, you can serve it.

For the risotto : 17 oz of rice ( round rice for risotto), 2 onions, 4 cups of vegetable broth, 2 oz of crushed hazelnuts, 4 tablespoons of white wine, 1 oz of butter, 3 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper.

Prepare the risotto. Warm the vegetable broth. Peel and slice thinly onions. Warm the oil and the butter in a frying pan wok. Make in the frying pan the rice return and the onions until they are translucent. Add the white wine and cook it until the wine is completely absorbed. Add a ladle of broth in the rice, mix slowly and cook until all the liquid is absorbed. Continue to cook it slowly 20 minutes. During that time, add the broth each time the rice had absorbed it. Add salt and pepper at your convenience.

In an other frying pan, roast the crushed hazelnuts for 5 minutes. Add it in the risotto and mix slowly. The risotto is ready.

Bon appétit !

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scallop in a champagne sauce – Christmas Eve menu 7/9

092My first main course is really fast to do and really good. You can do it when your guests are around the table and have started to eat.

To do it, you need for 12 guests : 36 fresh scallops, 3/4 cup of liquid cream, 2/3 of a champagne bottle, some chervil, some chive, 2 shallots, 1 oz of butter, salt and pepper.

In a frying pan, put the butter and the scallops (you have already washed and wiped with an absorbing paper). Frying the scallops 2 minutes on each side. Reserve it out of the frying pan. Mix the shallots in little pieces. Put the champagne and the shallots in the frying pan and cook it until the champagne reduce by half its volume. Then, add the chervil and the chive you have cut in little pieces with the cream. Put some salt and pepper, at your convenience. Add the scallop to hot it a little bit (around 1 minute).

Dispatch the scallops and the champagne sauce in your serving plates. It’s ready to eat.

Bon appétit !

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Croque-monsieur (toasted ham and cheese sandwich)

In France, we too have our national hot sandwich : it’s not the hamburger but the « Croque-monsieur », a toasted ham and cheese sandwich. Easy and fast to prepare, this sandwich is very well known in French families for a fast dinner at the end of the week-end, for example.

To do 6 croque-monsieurs, you need : 12 slices of bread, 6 slices of ham, 6 slices of Swiss cheese (or grated Swiss cheese), some sour cream and some grated Swiss cheese.

Put 6 slices of bread on a cookie sheet. Spread some sour cream on each slice, making a fine layer. Add the slices of ham on each slice. Cut it on the sides not to exceed any sandwich. Add the slices of Swiss cheese above the ham and close the sandwich with the second slice of bread. Sprinkle each croque-monsieur with some grated Swiss cheese to brown.

Put the sheet in your oven for 12 minutes at 400 °F. Your croque-monsieur should be well browned on the outside and soft inside. It’s ready to serve and you can accompany this dish with some salad. You can also cut the sandwich in little pieces for kids.

The traditional croque-monsieur has two different variations :

The croque-madame where you replace the grated cheese on the top of the sandwich with an egg you’ve just broken over the bread before putting it in the oven.

The banana croque-monsieur for dessert or breakfast. I will give you the recipe very soon.

Bon appétit !

Home made tomato sauce

When summer arrive, we can find very good and flavorful tomatoes. At that period, I found someone who can keep the kids a day long. Then, with a lot of fresh tomatoes from my parents’ vegetables garden, I cook my tomato sauce for the year in bottles, because I can use it in a lot of recipes (with meats, pasta, fishes, eggs) and I don’t waste time when I need a tomato sauce to prepare a dish. Here, I’m going to share with you the recipe to prepare a fresh one. You need 35 minutes to do it.

You need : 8 tomatoes, 2.5 oz of concentrated by tomato, 1 carrot, 1 red onion, 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil, 10 basil’s sheets, 1 oz of sugar, 1 teaspoon of salt.

Wash the vegetables, peel carrot and onion, remove the green head of the tomatoes. Put all the ingredients in your blender and liquidize the preparation. Overturn into a hollow frying pan and cook it slowly during 30 minutes. Mix from time to time. The color will change from pink to nice red.  At the end of the cooking time, taste the sauce. If it’s too bitter, you can add a little bit more of sugar and cook it 5 minutes more. It’s ready.

Bon appétit !

Basque chicken

The recipe I’m going to share with you is one of my favorites for a family dinner. The Basque chicken is, as usual, a traditional main course in French cooking. To prepare it, you need 1 1/2 hours to prepare it.

You will need : 1 chicken, cut up into 8 pieces, 2.5 cups of tomato sauce (see recipe for my homemade  sauce), 1 onion (a red one is better), 1 green pepper, 1 red pepper, 1 yellow pepper, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 pinches of chili (Espelette chili is the best one for that recipe), salt.

First, cut the chicken in individual pieces. Take a casserole and put the oil inside. Heat the oil and add the chicken pieces and brown on all sides. During that time, cut the three peppers into strips. Add them to the casserole with the browning chicken. Cut the onion in little cubes and add it, too. Mix all the vegetables around the chicken. When all the ingredients have a nice color, add the tomato sauce, salt and chili. Mix all ingredients, cover the casserole and let cook over low heat slowly for 1 hour.

It’s ready to serve. You can accompany this dish with rice or potatoes.

Bon appétit !

Sole from Dijon-Elegant and Easy!

This fish dishs absolutely delicious : very fast to make (5 minutes) and appealing to all, even my husband who usually doesn’t like fish and seafood. To prepare it for 4, you need :

4 sole filets, a dash of oil, 2 tablespoons of natural yoghurt, 2 tablepoons of mayonnaise, 1 teaspoon of mustard, 2 tablespoons of breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley and 2 tablespoons of grated swiss cheese.

In an oven safe dish, put a dash of oil on the bottom and place 4 filets on it.

In a bowl, mix together yoghurt, mayonnaise and mustard. In another bowl, mix together breadcrumbs, parsley and grated swiss cheese.

Take a spoon and coat the filet’s with the cream mixture. Then, sprinkle it with the dry mixture from the second bowl.

Put the plat in the oven with a temperature of 350 °F for 15 to 20 minutes (it depends how you like the topping, very brown or not).

It’s ready to serve. This dish is excellent with rice.

Bon appétit !

Stuffed Veal Cutlet

Here’s a great dish to impress your guests without lost time in the kitchen.

To make it for 4 people, you need : 4 veal cutlets, 4 slices of bacon, 4 slices of swiss cheese, some kitchen twine and, to accompany it, I suggest a mashed sweet potato with : 4 lbs sweet potatoes, 1 cup of whole milk, 1 T. butter, 1 T. heavy cream, ground nutmeg (optional), salt and pepper.

Stack each veal cutlet with a slice of bacon and a slice of swiss cheese. Roll it and tie it with some kitchen twine in the middle, to be sure it will not open during cooking. Put some salt (not too much because the bacon is already salty) and pepper around it. Brown them over med high heat in a frying pan with a little bit of butter. Turn it very often to brown uniformly. After that, put it in an oven-proof dish and cook it in the oven 20 minutes at a temperature of 300 °F. That will be enough to melt the cheese.  It’s ready to serve, now you just have to cut the kitchen twine and don’t worry, now that it’s cooked, your roll will stay a roll.

During the time your meat is in the oven you can make your mashed sweet potatoes. Wash and peel the potatoes. Put it in a pan of boiling water and cook it for 30 minutes. Empty the water and mix it with the milk, the butter and the cream. Add some ground nutmeg (if you have some), salt and pepper at your convenience.

Bon appétit !

Tomatoes tart

This tart is really easy to do. You need a pie plate, a pastry base, 5 tomatoes, swiss grated cheese, mustard, salt and pepper.

Prepare your oven with a temperature of 400°F.

Put your pastry base in the pie plate. With a fork, make some holes in the pate. Take a spoon and put mustard to cover the pate (a fine coat of mustard). Cut the tomatoes and prepare fine slices. Put the tomatoes on your pie. Put some salt and pepper according to your taste. To finish, put swiss grated cheese on the top of your pie to cover all the tomatoes.

Put on your oven for 30 minutes (or less if your oven cook really fast) to cook your tart with a temperature of 400 °F.

It’s ready to eat. You can serve it with a salad.

Bon Appétit !