May 26, 2014


Hopefully you read last week's post in this new 'Cooking in Paris' series. I've had to slow down the cooking (especially baking) frenzy because I was making more than I could eat. If you follow me on instagram you may have seen that I made éclairs last week. They were absolutely delicious and I ate too many. I made a second batch that ended up being quite awful. The pâte à choux was too liquid and it would not rise. Some ended up being burnt and too crispy, some were soggy and undercooked... I thought I'd share the recipe this week but I need to make them once again and nail them before I share. I ended up having to freeze the ones that were left. Too many éclairs = muffin top + big belly. This week I have a simple breakfast, a savory tart, a typical french side dish or snack, and absolutely delicious pear frangipane tartlets. 

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Fromage frais with honey or jam

This is a really yummy and insanely simple breakfast. Like the recipe right after it, it requires very little. Sometimes that's just how you want your breakfast. The reason I share such an easy, almost non-recipe is because it's a breakfast that reminds me of being in France. There are a lot of breakfast foods in America that really require some cooking but I feel like the French are always on the run in the mornings. I never hear them talk about any special breakfast they have. I remember skipping breakfast quite a few times (but never ever anymore) like a lot of people here. Actually a yogurt with sugar is what most kids would eat for dessert at lunch. But I think honey is so much better. And I had never tried jam until a week and a half ago and it was delicious!
In the US there is such a hype about granola and oats and goji berries and chia seeds... I don't think it's really reached France – at least not with the same intensity. I still wonder how the French are so skinny. And I guess we all are ( 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 ). When I'm in the US, I go for granola, I love love love granola. I'll have way too big breakfasts that make me uncomfortably full. Here the portions are smaller. This is different too. It's not yogurt, it's fromage frais. In the yogurt aisles, you will also find fromage blanc. They are my favorite. Much creamier and more delicious than yogurt! Do these exist in the US?

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radishes with butter

Such a simple side dish that I've seen countless french people eat. It's not my favorite way to eat radishes but it's not that bad either. I've little to say about it. I experimented with the radishes, cutting them up in weird ways but honestly, don't bother. Just wash them, cut off the ends and dip them in salted butter and crunch crunch crunch. I also added herbs to the butter which I think is a nice touch.

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Tarte de fin de semaine

I had leftover bread dough from making the pissaladière and decided to throw together a bunch of ingredients and make a vegetable tart. I crossed my fingers it would turn out okay. I called this the "tarte de fin de semaine" because it's something I would imagine making with all the leftovers at the end of the week. No need for a recipe because you just use whatever is at hand. I had mushrooms, asparagus, leeks, cherry tomatoes, turnips, zucchini, sun dried tomatoes, cheese... I didn't want to make something heavy so I added the cheese at the end just to give it a little something. It was really good. I cut up the leeks and let them get nice and soft on a pan for ten minutes; I also cooked the mushrooms in oil and balsamic vinegar for a bit. Then I steamed some asparagus for just 5 minutes. That's really all there is to it. Follow your preferred bread dough recipe (I used the one in this book). I put it all in the oven at 180˚C for 25 minutes and then added cherry tomatoes and goat cheese the minute it was out of the oven. Serve warm.

This reminds me of what I had for dinner last night. I literally took out all the leftovers, all the little things laying around in the fridge that I had to finish. It just wasn't as fancy. It was me, standing over the counter eating little bits of veggies and whatnot, watching Louie and trying to do the dishes. I am soon going to have to accept that this kitchen will never look great. It'll never be clean. Ever. God.

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Pear frangipane tartlet

This was a spur of the moment cooking endeavor. It was delicious. So delicious that I ate about a million little tartlets. I made some in a muffin mold and some in those ceramic pots that we get when we buy Saint Félicien cheese.

Five components: Pears, pastry (pâte sablée), frangipane, pastry cream (crème patissière), caramel
I think this kind of recipe can seem a little daunting. There are five different things going on at the same time. What! No, but you'll survive. Seriously. Just take things slow at first. Know what order to make things in and try to clean while you cook. This is one of the most important lessons I've learned. Making a mess is awful and can make things so difficult. If you keep your counters pretty clean while you cook, then... well, it'll probably be more fun, and I can 100% guarantee your food will taste better. No I can't. But trust me, okaaaay...

Pâte sablée
Recipe found here

crème frangipane
2 egg yolks
90g butter
100g sugar
130g almond powder
2 tsp dark rum

crème patissière
2 egg yolks
50g sugar
40g flour
1/4L milk

+ optional (but highly recommended) 
Caramel au beurre salé
Recipe found here or here

First make your pâte sablée. I followed the pastry recipe in the link above.

Make the crème patissière (this is one of many recipes I've seen. Here is a recipe with pictures. I used this for these tartlets, I use another for my éclairs, and when I get cornstarch, I'll have yet another recipe I can use...). Put the milk on the stove with half your sugar. Step away, breathe, here's the next step. Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl. While whisking, add the other half of the sugar. Now add the flour and mix, mix, mix. Once the milk is at a gentle boil, pour some of it into the bowl and whisk the egg mixture and milk. Bring the milk to a rolling simmer and pour the egg mixture into the milk. Mix until it's nice and thick. It shouldn't take too long, probably a minute. 

Now for the crème frangipane. Whisk the eggs with the melted butter and add the almond powder and rum. Once you have all that, add it to the crème patissière. Voilà! Add cut up pieces of pear. Roll out the pastry and cut into whatever you need for each mold. Pour in the mixture and cook at 200˚C for about 20 minutes. I kept checking and I feel like most of them were done around 20-25 minutes but it could depend on your oven. Leave them overnight because the frangipane filling is honestly better the next day when it's cool and set. Add the caramel if you want to lose complete control and gain 1000 pounds because it's too delicious to stop eating. This is a dangerous recipe... do it anyway.


Kamilė said...

I never even thought about eating radished with salted butter! We usually slice it and throw it in a salad or something.
The last recipe is definitely something I will try to cook if I manage to translate the Caramel au beurre salé recipe haha!

pourvouslesfilles said...

Ça donne envie !

Michèle Kruesi said...

looks absolutely delicious

Alice Cerea said...



Get in touch, I’m following you! Facebook | Instagram | Bloglovin |
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Alice Cerea said...



Get in touch, I’m following you! Facebook | Instagram | Bloglovin |
Win a trip in Genoa

Kisses from Italy

Alice Cerea said...



Get in touch, I’m following you! Facebook | Instagram | Bloglovin |
Win a trip in Genoa

Kisses from Italy

Sofia Donatelli said...

Thanks for sharing all these great recipes. It looks amazing.

Hope you had an wonderful and restful weekend.

Carmen Varner said...

Lovely! That is quite a lot of baking & cooking! Feel free to send me any leftovers! Hehe :] // ☼

Grace said...

You take amazing food pictures! And I love all the recipes you included! :)

Zanna's Sky said...

The pear tartlets look delicious, must attempt!!

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