Category Archives: Recipes

Cooking Demo at the Trident Bookseller Cafe in Boston

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On January 29, around 30 people attended the cooking demo I made at the Trident Bookseller Cafe on Newbury Street.

Three recipes where demonstrated from scratch. Every step was showed, described and explained in order to achieve the elaboration of: the Salmon Tartar, the Pasta Salad and the Applesauce.

Here are the not so secret ingredients to accomplish this at home.

SALMON TARTAR made during the demo (slightly different than the recipe of the book as well as the picture shown below)


INGREDIENTS: 

  • 1 cup of freshly diced salmon
  • 1 avocado 
  • 1/2 cup of chopped fennel
  • A little piece of ginger
  • 1 grapefruit
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tsp. of mustard 
  • 2 tsp. of olive oil 
  • A pinch of salt

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Take your piece of salmon, remove the skin and cut the flesh in dices.

2. Chop the peel and chop the ginger and the fennel.

3. Remove the skin of the grapefruit and cut the flesh in small pieces. (Don’t panic if you find difficulty in cutting the grapefruit- it is very juicy.) 

4. In a large bowl stir with a spoon the olive oil, mustard, 1/2 lemon juice, and the pinch of salt

5.  Add the chopped salmon, ginger, fennel and grapefruit to the bowl and use a two large spoons to stir all the ingredients together.

6. Serve very fresh!

PASTA SALAD (Italian Style) 
INGREDIENTS: 
  • 12 Oz of penne pasta (350gm)   
  • 1.5 cup of diced prosciutto 
  • 1 cup of diced mozzarella 
  • 6 tbs. of olive oil 
  • 1tbs of balsamic vinegar 
  • 1 tbs. of vinegar 
  • 6-8 fresh basil leaves 

1. Fill a large saucepan with water and let it boil with a pinch of salt.

2. When the water starts to quiver pour the pasta in.

3. Stir once in a while to make sure the pasta don’t stick to the bottom of pan.

Remove one minute to the cooking time from what is written on the box and your pasta will be perfectly al dente!

4. Shake the pasta around in a strainer to empty the water and let cold water run on the pasta to cool them down.

5. Put the pasta in a large bowl and add 3 tbs. of olive oil and stir.

6. Let the pasta stay at room temperature for half and hour and put te bowl in the fridge for 3 hours or even a day is fine.

7. Then, take the bowl out of the fridge, add 3 more tbs. of olive oil with a 1tbs. of balsamic vinegar and 1 tbs. of mustard and stir the pasta with a wooden spoon. It is easier to use your fingers – only if they have been cleaned and dried!

8. Add the mozzarella with the prosciutto and cut the basil leaves in the bowl.

9. Stir the pasta all together until it looks uniform.

FLASHLIGHT APPLESAUCE
INGREDIENTS:

  • Apples- count 2-3 per person
  • Optional: 1 tbs. of cinnamon powder
INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Peel the apples and cut them in quarters.

2. Put them in a large pan on low heat and cover with a lid.  Do not add any water or sugar: the apples are full of BOTH! 

3.  Cover the pan, and let the apples cook on very low heat.   Make sure to stir every 10-12 minutes.

4. If the apples are very smooth they are good. If they are still hard to pick, let them cook a little more.

5. To finish the recipe you can either mix the apples in a blender or you can use a fork to smash the cooked apples.

 

C’est la Chandeleur!

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What is la chandeleur?

40 days after Christmas la fete des chandelles celebrates the holiday of the candlesticks.

The tradition of making crepes on that day is because there was a saying about wheat being decayed for the year if crepes were not made on that day…

Centuries later, the tradition has been perpetrated… and kids often wait for that day to arrive, as it is the only day of the year where their mom allows them to have crepes (and not only one!) as a meal…

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Here is my recipe …

I APOLOGIZE – THERE HAS BEEN A PRINTING/DESIGN ERROR IN THE BOOK WHERE THE INGREDIENT BOX HAS BEEN MIXED UP! (Don’t hold grudges please…)

These are the REAL INGREDIENTS that need to be used for the crepes!

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups of flour (250 gm)
  • 2 cups of milk (or more if needed if your dough is lumpy or not liquid enough)
  • 2 tbs. of butter

INSTRUCTIONS: 

1. In a bowl, mix the flour with the two eggs.

You can use a whisk but it is better to use an electric mixer or a blender. 

2. Add a cup of milk and keep mixing to avoid lumps in the dough.

3. Without stopping mixing, add another cup of milk.

4. The dough must be thick but smooth.

5. Melt the butter and add it slowly to the dough.

6. Stir again, only with your whisk.

7. The dough should be smooth and liquid with a slight thickness.

If the dough is too liquid, your crêpe will not hold to the pan. 

8. If you have time, let the dough sit in the fridge for an hour or more.

9. In a large warm frying pan, melt a tsp. of butter.

You can also spray with oil or use a sheet of paper towel dipped in canola oil to 

paint the bottom of the pan. 

10. Fill ¾ of a ladle with some dough and pour it to the pan.

Move your pan with a wrist movement in order to spread the dough all

over the bottom of the pan. If some dough remains on the top, it means that you 

poured too much dough, and your crêpe will be thick. Not good! 

11. Let the crêpe cook on medium-low heat for 2 minutes then flip it.

12. Repeat the same steps for the rest of the dough.

 Bon Appetit!
TOP 3 Crepe Flavors:
-  Nutella with coconut flakes
- Powder sugar with fresh squeezed lemon
- Salted butter with granulated sugar

Quatre Quarts aux amandes

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Traditional French Cake, the Quatre Quarts is known for its basic use of ingredients: eggs, butter, flour, sugar- all of them used at the exact same weight. 

Lighter version of the pound cake- at least in the taste, the quatre-quarts can be declined in a variety of taste for many palates…

Plain, with Nutella, Lemon Zest, Orange Juice, Almond, Vanilla, Jam…

Below is the Almond version, here is the recipe:

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 1 tbs. of almond extract
  • 1 handful of  sliced almonds or almond powder
  • 1 pinch of baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • the weight of the eggs in flour, in sugar and in salted butter

3 eggs normally weight around 160/180 gm- so, if you don’t have a kitchen scale, either you invest in one (~ $10 at Bed Bath and Beyond) or you use cups, but it won’t be as precise.

180 gm of sugar= 3/4 of a cup – 180 gm of flour= 1.5 cups – 180 gm of butter = melted is 3/4 of a cup. 

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Pre-heat the oven on 350F./ 180C.
  2. Melt the butter in the microwave or small saucepan on low heat.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the 3 eggs and the sugar until you get a yellow pale mix with a wooden spoon.
  4. Add little by little the flour – your dough should get heavier and stickier to stir.
  5. Verse slowly the melted butter to the bowl and keep stirring.
  6. Your dough should look smooth and fairly liquid.
  7. Add the pinch of baking soda and the handful of sliced almonds or almond powder.
  8. Stir again, and verse the tbs. of almond extract.
  9. Verse the dough in a baking mold, spread some sliced almonds on the top (as shown in the picture,) and put in the oven for 20-22 minutes.

Before removing from the oven, stick a knife in the middle of the cake, to check if it is cooked.

If the blade of the knife is covered with dough, let your cake cook for another 10 min.

If the blade is almost perfectly clean, your cake is perfectly baked. 

If the blade is spotless, take your cake out immediately.

French Cuisine for the Young and Broke – Book Launch

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Last Tuesday,  French Cuisine for the Young and Broke was officially launched at  Jadis Restaurant in the Lower East Side.

After four days of intense shopping, cutting, cooking and baking, 16 recipes directly taken from the book were offered to avid palates eager to discover home-made deliciousness. Eighty-five people were expected, but two hundred people in and out showed up.

All of them were able to leave with their little gift bag with a custom-made glass jar filled with cookie samples – from coconut rocks to brownies, chocolate or honey madeleines, short bread or cat tongue cookies) as well as a custom wooden spoon – THE necessary utensil to succeed in making most of the 132 recipes portrayed in the book.

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French Cuisine by Ele

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Chers New Readers,

If you are a foodie,

If you are French, but specially if you are not

If you are a traveler,

If you are a writer and a reader,

If you like new things

and if you like to cook,

This new blog/website should be a bookmark in your toolbar.

At first, I will share insights about my first cookbook that will be launched on December 6th of this year:

French Cuisine for the Young and Broke.  

At the meantime and in the near future, I will give you tips in the kitchen, insights about restaurants, 48 hours city guides, press articles about health, surveys, food tricks and tips and will share pictures as often as I possibly can.

For any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me at frenchcuisinebyele@gmail.com