This Saturday we had a little dinner Chez Nous with a Paris theme with Matt, Adam, Brooke and Gaby, because Matt and Adam had just returned from France and Minty wanted chocolate mousse and the Mother Forkers couldn’t make it and I wanted to drink more rosé and kir royales and well just because… does one really need a reason?
As I explained my summer trip and how we had flown straight to Paris Matt stopped me mid sentence and said it was a wonderful title for my book – Straight to Paris… it does have a certain je ne sais quois ring to it but since I don’t have time for another book quite yet here’s a little post to keep the franglé at bay.
I cooked and baked and chopped and stirred with and without the kids for most of the day – it was heavenly.
Tzatziki recipe from a new book by Dorie Greenspan Around My French Table
The garlic was fierce – love this book – it’s the type of book that you don’t just want to read and look at but want to make every recipe – I’m slowly working through them… was going to make her gougeres but just as I’d got my ingredients out I got a message from Gaby to say she was making some to bring – and they were delicious – light and puffy and cheesy and since pate a choux is an easy go to in our kitchen I will be making more in the not too distant future.
Olive oil poached Yellowtail (caught by hubby) with Saffron Orzo and Roasted Red Pepper Vinaigrette from the Chanterelle cookbook
Chanterelle – my favorite book to drool over and get inspired. And now I have a new technique – poaching in olive oil – although I fear this is really deep fat frying – but hey what do I know?! My kitchen smelt a little like a chip shop the next day but it was so worth it for the flaky buttery white fillets smoothered in red pepper sauce perched on top of a mound of yellow saffron orzo.
The greatest compliment you can give a Parisienne – and probably a French person in general – is to ask for their recipe. So I was thrilled to get an email from Gaby thanking me for a fabulous dinner and asking for the red pepper vinaigrette – so here it is:
Red Pepper Vinaigrette
Adapted from Chanterelle – [oh how I miss that restaurant]
3 medium red bell peppers
3 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup extra vigin olive oil
3 small garlic clove peeled
1/4 cup tomato juice – canned or bottled
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/4 cup water
And just because we were all having far too good a time of it on Saturday to even think about stopping to snap a pic there are no pics!
So here once again is the inspiration: my new friend Françoise – who lives near Ménerbes in Provence, has a petite potager, gorgeous children, superb farmhouse, dashing hubby, well stocked pantry of homemade preserves – oh it’s enough to make one vert with envy – just look at her wonderful table – for a casual aperitif – PERFECTION:
A bientot! A tout alors! A la prochaine…