Category Archives: French food

Provencal Chicken

As RipleyPickles mentioned, fall is in the air.  Down here in NOLA that means it is a cool high 80’s/low 90’s, so I think a nice comfort chicken dish is needed.  Provencal Chicken has all the right ingredients- shallots, butter, wine, rosemary, and garlic.  Unless you serve this chicken raw, it is impossible to ruin.  This is easy, delicious, and will impress any dinner guests.   This recipe comes from Pierre Franey’s “Cooking In France.”
Chef’s note:  the secret to making this the perfect chicken dish is cooking the chicken skin-side down for at least ten minutes.  The crispiness is key.  As always, using homemade chicken broth changes a dish completely and is highly recommended. -ts

3-4 pound chicken cut in pieces (ask your butcher to chop it) or use 2 pound chicken pieces
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons minced shallots
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup chicken broth

  1. Season chicken pieces on both sides liberally with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat in heavy skillet large enough to hold pieces comfortably until butter foam has subsided. Add chicken pieces skin-side down and cook undisturbed until skin is crisp and golden brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Turn chicken pieces over and add garlic and rosemary to skillet. Continue to cook for 10 more minutes.
  3. Remove chicken to rest and carefully remove all but a few tablespoons of fat from skillet. Add shallots and cook for 30 seconds, then add wine and chicken broth. Scrape up pan juices from surface and reduce sauce by half
  4. Return chicken pieces to pan skin-side up and cook, covered, until chicken is cooked through. Add remaining tablespoon of butter to skillet to finish sauce. Serve chicken immediately with sauce draped around it.

Leave a comment

Filed under Chicken, Comfort food, French food, Main Course

Pitts’ Baked Fontina Cheese

fourscoops.blogspot.com

This recipe comes to us from Mr. Justin Pitts, Esq. of Malibu, California, so you know this shiz be fancy.

I have yet to try this, but I think we all recognize that bubbly cheese=fatty goodness about 98% of the time.

(The other 2% of the time is made up of randomly scarring incidents such as the time I saw a cheese-and-mayonnaise sandwich that was left out on the picnic table for 2 days in kindergarten. This girl Amanda used to trade me her Kraft-single-and-mayo sammys for my boring turkey ones because my mom wouldn’t make them for me. Dot said they provided no nutritional value… which is ironic, because she also used to let me eat whole sticks of butter. But I only parent a small dog who eats olives and pickles on the regular, so what do I know.)

Anyway, bubbly cheese + fresh herbs + a cast iron skillet should be enough to melt any Southerner’s heart, so we’re glad to see Pitts hasn’t let SoCal fancify all the good sense out of him. Now let’s get melty:

1.5 lbs Fontina Val d’Aosta cheese, rind cut off, 1-in dice
1/4 cup olive oil
6 cloves garlic, sliced thin
1 tbsp fresh thyme, minced
1 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 baguette, sliced and toasted

  1. Put the cheese cubes in a 12 Inch cast iron skillet. Drizzle with olive oil.
  2. Sprinkle the garlic and herbs all around and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Put under broiler 5 inches from the heat for about 6-7 minutes until bubbly and starting to brown.
  4. Dip the bread in it and devour.

 

1 Comment

Filed under Appetizers, Dips, French food

Summer Veggie Gratin ~ They’re baaa-aaack!

While a Poltergeist II  quote may be a random way to get back in the swing of recipe blogging, that’s just where I am in my life.

As it turns out, working can really take its toll on a girl’s ability to blog sarcastic about pop culture and cooking. And between that and a serious commitment to happy hour, I have been straight up remiss. In any case, I am now officially, as Britney might say, “back, b*tch.” Less with a vengeance and more with a  fantastic veggie dish for your summer pleasure, but that’s for you to decide.

In general, I think eggplants are bruise-colored squishbombs that are only tolerable when covered in marinara sauce and parm. The Chef proved, however, that this simply is not so. After his inaugural trip to the 12 South Farmer’s Market, he whipped up this slightly decadent and totally tasty take on a veggie gratin, and it was crusty, seasonal goodness.

The texture of the veggies in combination with the crunch of the breadcrumbs and kick of the fresh thyme makes this dish bright and – dare I say it – healthy. (I know we generally only make things that involve a vat of cream or butter, but “even a blind squirrel” as Dot would say…)

So there you have it. We’re glad to be “out amongst ya” again, Nummy! Now go forth and gratin.

americastestkitchen.com

Onion mixture
1 onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp olive oil
dash of salt
1 tsp fresh thyme

Veggies all sliced into 1/2-inch circles
2 zucchini
2 yellow tomatoes
2 yellow squash
1 eggplant

Panko/Parm/thyme mix:
1/2 cup of Parmesan
1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 tbsp fresh thyme

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. For the Onion Mixture, saute onions in olive oil in a pan. Add salt. Once softened, add garlic and thyme. Cook for 1 minute.
  3. Combine zucchini, squash and eggplant in a bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper.
  4. Place tomatoes on a plate and season with salt and pepper. (The Chef says the seasoning are the most important, so don’t skimp with the S&P.)
  5. Spread onions on the bottom of a casserole dish. Layer veggies over the onions. Top with panko mix.
  6. Bake for 40 minutes.
  7. After 40 minutes, turn the oven up to 500 and cook for 10 minutes, until golden brown.

Leave a comment

Filed under French food, Side dishes, Veggies

Tarte au Citron (lemon tart)

I love RipleyPickles’ enthusiasm for this blog as well as her love for any challenge or FB call out even if it means failing a class.  We both have been slow to post due to a rough NOLA weekend.  Hopefully we will be back in action next week.  For now here is a great dessert recipe that is seriously the easiest thing to make and will impress all who eat it.   I am terrible at baking, yet for some reason refuse to quit trying to learn how to bake (very unfortunate for my tester Chef John).  One of these days I know I will get that secret touch, but for now my go to desserts are bake free.   ENJOY! –ts
This makes a thin, but very tasty and perfect lemony layer. If you want more filling, feel free to double the recipe.
David Lebovitz’s note: If you use Meyer lemons, reduce the sugar to 1/3 cup. Any filling that you don’t use can be spread on toast, fresh biscuits, or scones.

1/2 cup freshly-squeezed lemon juice
grated zest of one lemon
1/2 cup sugar
6 tablespoons butter, salted or unsalted, cut into bits
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
Fresh berries
One pre-baked 9-inch tart shell – As mentioned I am not a baker so feel free to use your favorite recipe or frozen

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C.)
  2. In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the lemon juice, zest, sugar, and butter. Have a mesh strainer nearby.
  3. In a small bowl, beat together the eggs and the yolks.
  4. When the butter is melted, whisk some of the warm lemon mixture into the eggs, stirring constantly, to warm them. Scrape the warmed eggs back into the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and almost begins to bubble around the edges.
  5. Pour the lemon curd though a strainer directly into the pre-baked tart shell, scraping with a rubber spatula to press it through.
  6. Smooth the top of the tart and pop it in the oven for five minutes, just to set the curd.
  7. Remove from the oven and sprinkle fresh berries over top, stick in refrigerator or in a cool spot and let cool before slicing and serving.

1 Comment

Filed under Dessert, French food, Party food, Special Occasion, Sweets

French Onion Soup

The Chef made this a few nights ago out of the Beef Broth he created last week, and it was a clean, brothy version of the classic. Topping this with some cracked black pepper and french bread that has been toasted with gruyere or provolone on top will make you feel positively French. But not in the stinky beret-wearing way.
——
6 sweet yellow onions, thinly sliced
tablespoon of olive oil
4 cups of beef broth
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme
2 tablespoons of brandy
salt and pepper to taste
—–
  1. Cook onions in olive oil over medium low heat in a large Dutch oven for about one hour. You want the onions to be very caramelized so be patient.
  2. Once caramelized, add brandy. Cook until brandy evaporates.
  3. Add broth and thyme. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste and top with melted gruyere or provolone cheese and croutons. As usual, this is even better the day after.

Leave a comment

Filed under Comfort food, French food, Soups

Swiss Chard, Mushroom, Onion and Bacon Tart

Head to the store, pick up produce that looks good and create a recipe.  That was my plan for last night, and since spring is in the air (70 degrees in NYC today you better believe I am inappropriately showing leg at work!) and the veggies are looking fine, it was an easy task.  I grabbed some swiss chard, onions, herbs, and boomers; mix it with cheese, cream, egg, and bacon and dinner is served!  I am calling this a “tart” because that sounds much more modern than quiche even though it basically is a quiche.   I served this with a Kale Salad.  This recipe is pretty close to Liz’s  but with some extra nummy-ness.–ts

1 shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Handful rosemary chopped
4-6 ounces bacon (about 8 slices) chopped
1 bundle Swiss chard chopped ribs removed
Large handful mushrooms
1 large onion chopped
3 eggs
1 heaping cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper to season
4-6 ounces gruyère cheese, grated (I filled a bowls worth of grated cheese)
1 deep tart shell, pre-baked in a 9-inch pan

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 375°F. Cook bacon in large pan, remove from pan and set aside, also reserve bacon grease. 
  2. In same pan add some bacon grease, sauté and fry the shallots until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for one minute. Then add a little more bacon grease and sauté onions and rosemary on low-medium heat for about 5-7 minutes.  Then add mushrooms and sauté for another 8 minutes or so.  Add swiss chard and cook until wilted (about 5 minutes).  Season everything with salt and pepper.
  3. Meanwhile beat the eggs together with the cream. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Combine sautéed veggies with almost all of the cheese. 
  5. Add a little shredded cheese to bottom of the tart shell, then fill it with all the vegetable mixture, and pour over the cream mixture. Bake until the tart has set, about 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool. Serve at room temperature.

Leave a comment

Filed under Breakfast, Comfort food, French food, Main Course, Party food, Veggies

JR’s Brandy Mustard Filets

The Chef told me “this should have been the first recipe to go on the blog.  It’s stupid good.”  This got me to thinking about which recipe was actually the first, and it should come as a surprise to no one that it was Fat Girl Special Dip from the resident FG herself. How classy!
—————————–
I think we can all agree that we’ve dialed up the taste-level here in the last few months, and that is thanks in no small part to all of our wonderful contributors. JR, the latest to finally give up the goods*, has got a recipe here that appears to be both simple and sophisticated. In my experience brandy and whipping cream make everything crazy succulent (see Barrett’s Sauteed Shroom Sauce for proof), so I have no doubt this is as fantastic as The Chef says.
—————————–
Besides, a girl can’t live on hot sausage and cream cheese alone… Well I guess she could, but it would probably be a lonely, brief existence that ended in heart disease and/or mauling by house cats. And nobody wants that.
—————————–
4 beef tenderloin steaks (about 2-3 inches thick)
4 tbsp butter
4 tbsp of dijon mustard
2 tsp of Worcestershire
1/2 cup brandy
1 cup whipping cream
salt and pepper
—————————–
  1. Season steaks with salt and pepper.
  2. Melt butter in a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Cook steaks 5 minutes per side for medium rare.
  3. Remove steaks to plate to rest.
  4. Add mustard and Worcestershire to skillet. (If you wanted to add ‘shrooms here, I’d support you in that effort.) Season with pepper and and stir to combine. Remove skillet from heat.
  5. Add brandy and ignite. When flame dies, return skillet to heat.
  6. Add cream and boil for 2 mintues until reduced to a thin sauce. Pour over steaks to serve.

Serve these up with some roasted garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus. Dinner is served.

*It should be noted that The Chef stole this recipe from JR’s cookbook under the guise of visiting sweet Holly Hays yesterday. Let it never be said that Barrett doesn’t have a diabolical side. Especially when recipe-warfare is involved.

1 Comment

Filed under Beef, French food, Main Course, Meat, Sauces, Special Occasion