Monday, November 29, 2010

Roast Chicken for les Paresseux

Yesterday I made Roast Chicken for les Paresseux, my fourth recipe this month for French Fridays with Dorie.    The chicken browned up nicely.  I didn't eat the bread.  It was swimming in chicken juice and did not look appetizing.  Was it supposed to get crispy?  I added the optional water.  Maybe if I hadn't the bread would have been more appealing.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Potato Gratin and Caramel-Topped Semolina Cake

This week for French Fridays with Dorie I made Potato Gratin (Pommes Dauphinois) and Caramel-Topped Semolina Cake. 

Alas the Potato Gratin did not turn out well.  The Gruyere cheese tasted so delicious, but the texture of the potatoes was not right.  The potatoes were newly dug from the garden, and may have suffered from being frozen. 
The Caramel-Topped Semolina Cake, on the other hand, is wonderful.  I have never made caramel before, and benefitted from reading the comments of other FFWD participants.  It turned so quickly from clear, to a pale golden, to a deep amber, at which point I pulled it quickly off the stove.

This is similar to a Lebanese square made with Cream of Wheat.  My cookbook calls it Nammura (Hrisi).  The syrup is a clear mixture of sugar, water, and lemon juice, and the squares have tahini, Cream of Wheat, butter, yogurt, baking powder, and almonds.  Has anyone else ever made these?  They are yummy.

Monday, November 15, 2010

National Bundt Day - Nov. 15

Here's my cake, baked in honor of National Bundt Day, Nov. 15.

This is Citrus-Scented Olive Oil Cake from Enlightened Cakes, by Camilla V. Saulsbury.*  It is flavored with  lots of grated lemon peel, lemon juice, and coriander, and glazed with orange marmalade. 

Saulsbury, C. V. (2008). Enlightened cakes: More than 100 decadently light layer cakes, bundt cakes, cupcakes, cheesecakes, and more, all with less fat & fewer calories. Nashville, Tenn: Cumberland House.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pumpkin Gorgonzola Flans

Yesterday I made pumpkin gorgonzola flans, from Around My French Table, by Dorie Greenspan.  The online cooking group French Fridays with Dorie, is cooking its way through the book.  This was very easy to make - mix a few ingredients in the food processor, top with cheese and walnuts, and bake in a water bath.

The texture of the baked flan is too mushy for me.  I wonder if cooking it longer would have helped? 

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Marie-Helene's Apple Cake

The fifth recipe in French Fridays with Dorie was a simple apple cake.  I used ambrosia apples, a new variety of apple from British Columbia.  As with the other oven baked recipes so far I kept the cake in the oven for much longer than indicated in the recipe.  The cake is delicious.

Can you guess what caused the pink colour in the centre of the cake?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Gerard's Mustard Tart

With two kinds of mustard, this tart is delicious.  I had some trouble rolling out the tart shell dough, but the filling was very easy to prepare and bake. 

Saturday, October 9, 2010


French Fridays with Dorie is an online cooking group working its way, one recipe per week, through Dorie Greenspan's new cookbook.

Here's the citation:
Greenspan, D. (2010). Around my French table: More than 300 recipes from my home to yours. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

To challenge myself to cook more and learn new recipes and techniques I'm going to give this a try.

The first recipe is Gougeres, aka cheese puffs.  I had never made a dough like this, pate a choux.   The first sheet didn't rise, so I left the second sheet in longer.  The gougeres rose a bit, but never turned golden.  If I made these again I'll turn the oven up higher.