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Food,

Crepes

 

Crepes are such a classic French treat that most visitors couldn’t imagine coming to France and not having at least one. In fact, crepes are so beloved in France that there is an entire holiday dedicated to eating them! It occurs on February 2nd of each year and is called “la Chandeleur.”

 

Of course, la Chandeleur, or Candlemas as it’s known in some English-speaking countries, wasn’t originally intended to be a day dedicated to crepes. This medieval holiday has centuries-old roots that some claim are Christian and other claim are Pagan. For most modern French, though, this holiday is simply about gathering with family, friends, and a feast of crepes!

 

This year, join in the festivities with a meal of homemade crepes! Slather them in chocolate spread, jam, honey, butter and sugar—whatever your heart desires. But don’t forget to pair them with a glass of wine! We recommend B&G Vouvray for a light accompaniment, B&G Sauternes for a decadent addition, or B&G Extra Dry sparkling wine for a festive touch!

 

Crepes

 

  • 250 g flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 5 L milk
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 50 g butter, melted and cooled

 

In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, salt, and sugar). Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients and add the eggs. Mix gently with a whisk until the mixture is well incorporated, then slowly add the milk, a little at a time, making sure to fully incorporate after each pour.

 

Once the batter is smooth and free of all clumps, whisk in the melted and cooled butter until well combined. The batter should be relatively thin with an even consistency.

 

On the stove, heat a crepe pan or skillet over medium heat and lightly grease using a paper towel soaked in oil. Once heated, spoon a small amount of batter onto the hot pan and quickly rotate the pan in order to cover the entire surface with the batter. Flip once the bottom has turned a golden brown. It shouldn’t take more than 1-2 minutes on each side.

 

Repeat until you’ve run out of batter!

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Food,

Scallops in Beurre Blanc

 

 

 

Scallops, which are farmed extensively in Normandy and Brittany, are a staple of holiday meals in France. Their delicate flavor pairs nicely with a rich and creamy sauce, which is why scallops in beurre blanc is always a big hit. Plus, it couldn’t be any easier to prepare. This lightly charred and buttery dish is practically foolproof and makes for a perfect entrée to your Christmas dinner!

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Food,

Brioches Perdues

 

The history of French toast is hotly debated, but one thing is for sure—it isn’t actually French. In fact, it dates all the way back to the Roman Empire. Fast forward a couples of millennia and cultures around the world have their own rendition of this classic dish.

In France, the most basic rendition of this dish is called pain perdu. Literally “lost bread,” its name comes from the fact that it is traditionally made using old bread that would otherwise be thrown away. Simply soak the old bread in some eggs and milk and you’ve got an easy, delicious breakfast.

However, to turn this recipe into something truly French, all you need to do is replace the bread with brioche and voilà, you’ve got brioches perdues! The rich, buttery flavor of French brioche makes this version of French toast much more decadent and more suitable as a dessert than as a breakfast.

Treat yourself to this delectable dish for National French Toast Day!

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Food,

Rouelle de Veau with Carrots

Looking for a hearty recipe to keep you warm on chilly autumn nights? We’ve got the recipe for you!

Simple, yet flavorful, this one-pot dinner is just as good for entertaining guests as it is for an easy weeknight meal. Braising the veal shanks makes them fall-off-the-bone tender and the stewed carrots add a welcome hint of sweetness.

But the best thing about this recipe is that it gives you an excuse to open a bottle of white wine! Add two glasses to the pan while cooking, then pour a third glass just for you, to be enjoyed while you wait for dinner to be ready!

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Food,

Meager from Les Sables d’Olonne with Eggplant, White Beans, and Fried Onions

 

Les Sables d’Olonne is a little seaside town south of Nantes and north of La Rochelle, home to France’s fourth-largest fishing port. Here, fishermen specialize in trawling fish like hake, sole, and tuna. Meager is another fish that is abundant in Les Sables d’Olonne.

Delicate in flavor, but firm in texture, meager makes a practical canvas for playing with flavors and textures. In this recipe, enjoy the diversity of textures—the crunch of fried onions, the tenderness of cooked eggplant, and the smoothness of the white beans.

Preparing this dish with meager from Les Sables d’Olonne gives it a local touch and special flavor, though any meager filets will do.

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Non classé,

Ratatouille

You could say that ratatouille is the epitome of French cuisine—simple, local ingredients lovingly seasoned and prepared with care. Although the eponymous film, which takes place in a high-end restaurant, might make it seem like a fancy dish, it actually couldn’t be more simple. It is, after all, just a vegetable stew, like many others you might find around the Mediterranean.

However, there are a couple things that make ratatouille stand out above other veggie stews. The first is local seasoning. Stewing your vegetables with a bouquet garni consisting of the traditional herbes de Provence (rosemary, marjoram, thyme, oregano, and even lavender) will infuse your ratatouille with the unmistakable flavor of the South of France.

The second tip is to cook each of the vegetables individually before stewing them together to make sure each ingredient maintains its flavor as much as possible. This little touch might add a few extra minutes to the preparation, but trust me, it’s totally worth it!

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Non classé,

Pesto Pasta with Burrata

OK, you got me. Pesto is not French. However, it does do a good job of representing the regional flavors of the South of France. After all, Genoa, the birthplace of pesto, is just a short jaunt down the coast from Nice—not even three hours by car.

This tangy, and verdant sauce is a timeless indulgence. In the summer, it adds rich flavor to light vegetable and seafood dishes. But now that we’re approaching the Fall, I thought it’d be more timely to pair it with hearty pasta and fresh burrata to make it extra filling!

Although you can easily find pesto in any grocery store, it’s 100x better when you make it yourself. Here, you’ll learn how to make it with a food processor, but if you want to be really traditional, you can go at it by hand with a mortar and pestle.

 

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Non classé,

Clams in Persillade

I think it goes without saying that the Mediterranean Coast is a paradise for seafood lovers. Fresh fish and shellfish take center stage in so many Provençal specialties, such as cured, dried fish, aromatic fish soup, and of course, bouillabaisse—Marseille’s famous seafood stew.

As amazing as all of those dishes are, there is a much simpler dish that, for me, is unbeatable. And that’s palourdes en persillade. Palourdes, known elsewhere as carpet shell clams, are some of the finest and most popular clams in the Mediterranean and along the Atlantic Coast.

Every culture and region of the Mediterranean has its own ways of preparing clams. In the South of France, they are tossed in an herb-rich and creamy persillade sauce that is as delicious as it is simple to prepare. Learn how to make this timeless dish below!

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Food,

Aïoli

Like many other specialties from Provence, aïoli goes back a long, long way. In fact, the first recorded mention of it dates over 2,000 years! When you taste it, you’ll understand why it’s stood the test of time.

Creamy, garlicky, and mouth-wateringly delicious, aïoli is the perfect partner for fresh veggies—raw or cooked. But that’s not all…you can also spread it on sandwiches, dollop it onto roast meats, use it as a dip for seafood, or as a topping for hard-boiled eggs.

Making aïoli is very similar to making homemade mayonnaise. It involves lots of stirring and patience. You can use a whisk to make the job a bit easier, or you can do it the traditional way with a mortar and pestle, as described in the recipe below. This way may require a bit of extra effort, but it’ll be worth it for the authentic taste!

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