When your garden is overflowing and your kitchen is packed with produce, there is ratatouille. This thick and silky French stew of eggplant, zucchini, sweet peppers, and ripe summer tomatoes will use up your extra vegetables in one fell swoop, making enough food to feed a crowd, pack for lunch, and still freeze for later.
David Lebovitz, acclaimed pastry chef, cookbook author and blogger, welcomed me into his almost-renovated Parisian kitchen (see his original kitchen here). He was as delightful in person as he is on the page and screen, even amidst ongoing construction. Join me for a brief interview and catch-up session with one of our favorite bon vivants.
I have two extraordinary, culinary–minded friends who always invite me over for impromptu meals of homemade ricotta and roasted tomato galettes, a tasting of new cheese purchases, or lemon–caper berry egg salad on freshly baked bread and citrus cornmeal cake topped with creme fraiche. (You get the idea. I'm a lucky friend.) I had to put a stop to all of their hospitality and extend some of my own, with a big pile of fresh crêpes and fruity toppings bien sur.
Who:La Cornue What We Noticed: La Cornue, best known for their stoves, makes heavily handsome and luxurious French-style kitchens, gleaming with enamel and brass. But they are also adapting to more modern tastes with this clean-lined induction stove. It looks more like a desk than a range -- furniture for the home. The accompanying oven hides its controls behind a hinged panel and also manages to look more like furniture than an appliance.
Socca is easy to love, as I learned several summers ago when a friend made a big batch as an appetizer for a backyard party. The crispy-edged and pancake-thin slices have that sweet and nutty flavor of chickpeas, but they're also a little smoky from some time under the broiler. Since the recipe is naturally gluten-free and vegan, it's a winner for any dinner party crowd.
Let me walk you through the experience of eating a fresh gougère. It's surprisingly light as you pick it up, almost insubstantial and still hot from the oven. The crispy shell crunches as you pull it open, releasing a puff of savory steam. Then you hit the middle: soft, eggy, and indecently cheesy. Two bites and it's gone. You're going to want to make a batch of these soon, trust me.
If you haven't had quiche lately, it is time to remedy that situation. I could eat quiche for breakfast, lunch, and dinner without ever growing tired, but quiche is an especially good dish for a big Easter brunch or other spring-time gathering. You make it the day ahead, slice it just before serving, and then pass out the plates. This fool-proof recipe has yet to disappoint.
I have a very tiny kitchen and it sometimes will prevent me from entertaining as much as I would like. I thought this was a legitimate excuse until I saw a video from British-born, Paris-dwelling Rachel Khoo. At least I have a real stovetop and oven! Read on for more about Rachel and a video clip featuring her teeny-tiny kitchen.
I have been meaning to try a yogurt cake for a long time. Clotilde at Chocolate & Zucchini says that gâteau au yaourt is a simple classic, a cake that is often the first thing that French children learn to bake. It doesn't need a mixer or more than one bowl — or more than 10 minutes, for that matter. And its tangy, fluffy texture is just a perfect pair for summer berries.