Two years ago, I had a little series of choux pastry recipes going (first with gruyere and rosemary gougères then delicious and sweet chouquettes) and all that was missing since then is my beloved recipe for profiteroles with dark chocolate sauce. So let's wait no more!
When I think about simple desserts I really enjoyed as a child and still do to this day, the first thing that comes to mind is riz au lait (rice pudding). This and semolina puddings were some of my favourites. Creamy and simply flavoured with vanilla, I would often favour this over a slice of cake. I think what made it extra special were the little touches my mother would add: a few dollops of apple compote, a drizzle of dark chocolate and sometimes, the most fun of all, a small buttery biscuit (such as Petit Beurre for example) and a spoonful of jam hidden under the creamy rice pudding (I was always ecstatic discovering this little surprise).
These days, I obviously do no wait for my mother to be around to make me rice pudding. First of all because we do not even live in the same country, second of all because I can just make it for myself (ok, well sometimes I even buy it ready made but trust me, there are some really delicious ones out there). There is something actually quite satisfying and relaxing about making a pot of rice pudding. It is not a fast recipe, it takes time and attention so turn on the radio or a good podcast, put on your favourite apron and start preparing some of that delicious creamy dessert. I happen to have a delicious recipe for you!
Another year, another French Crepes Day or la chandeleur (otherwise known as candlemas). As usual, on 2nd February, I prepare a good batch of crepes batter so we can have a dinner of delicious French pancakes. I serve them with many different toppings, savoury and sweet, so each person can create their own filling. If you type in 'crepes' in the search bar on this blog, you will see I do love varying the toppings and coming up with new ideas every year.
It should probably be noted that I do not make crepes only on special occasions (such as 2nd February or Pancake Tuesday). I love making them all year long, especially for dinner parties since you can make them ahead of time and keep them in a warm oven before serving with all the toppings set on the table for the guests.
When it gets cold, all I want to do is eat cheese. But not just plain cheese! I am speaking about it melted into cheese heaven goodness such as in raclette, tartiflette or fondue. Served with all kinds of buttery boiled potatoes, charcuterie and cornichons (gherkins), melted over potato cubes and bacon bits or a variety melted with white wine into a pot where big chunks of bread are dipped in... Are you still with me or have you gone to cheese dreamland?
I obviously do not eat those dishes everyday because I would certainly lose the enjoyment and get bored. Also, imagine the state of my arteries if I only listened to my cheese dreams...
So, instead, I reserve those wonderful cheese dishes for every other weekend during Winter time. And if I have a sudden craving for melted cheese, I just stir a small handful of it grated into a hot soup. Depending on the vegetables, I vary the options with Comté, Gruyère, Manchego, Gorgonzola or Parmesan cheese.
Have you started taking all your warm clothes, Winter coats, long soft scarves and blankets out of the closet? I definitely have started my annual ritual of layering my clothes before leaving the house. Goodbye cold salads and ice creams, hello comforting hot dishes and soups!
I am stocking up on soup recipes for the colder months so we get to try various things: different types of vegetables, sometimes some fruit added, spices or not, cream or coconut milk, and many many types of toppings. When making a simple plain soup or velouté, it is always a good idea to prepare a few toppings to make it less boring: croutons, toasted nuts, crumbled or grated cheese, bacon bits, etc.
One of my favourite soups to make is butternut. I just love how creamy it is and its colour is so pleasing, it is like sunshine in a bowl!
I sometimes get strange food memories from my childhood in France. When I do, I end up wanting a taste of the specific dish, cake, biscuit etc. Most of the times, it is really difficult because I can either only get it in France or it does not exist anymore (insert my favourite Prosper soft gingerbread mini cakes that had apricot jam or chocolate in the centre, sigh...). And other times, I just find ways to make it myself.
One of those odd memories recently included beurre de sardine. Yes, sardine butter... It doesn't sound super exciting when you put it like this but it is actually quite delicious. I am not speaking about the lumpy one we had to eat at the school canteen but the one made at home with great care and the nicest canned sardines (I used to live on the Atlantic seaside where there were lots of local cannery factories then).
I guess at the time it was the school and our parents' own sneaky way of making us French kids eat oily fish by blending it into a fine paté style consistency.
Hello! I’m Yolene, a French blogger based in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Welcome to my blog Crème de Citron. This is where I share lifestyle, travel and food stories.
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