Archive for the ‘Around My French Table’ Category

FFwD: Mustard Batons

Hello fellow bakers!

Today is mustard baton day and I really enjoyed making these. My big splurge included going to a gourmet grocers to find that elusive Maille mustard so my batons could “be all they can be”. Seriously, I am a mustard lover so I thought I should use this as a perfect excuse to purchase some real French Dijon mustard when it is featured so prominently in a recipe. So I did, score one for me. Let’s with a look at the ingredients below -most of which are kitchen tools of some fashion. This my friends was an easy recipe! 

 I started by sprinkling a piece of parchment paper with flour, removing the packaging from one sheet of puff pastry and very carefully unfolded it on top of the parchment. I rolled it out into a long rectangle close to the 12×16 inches that Dorie suggests. 

I opened our star ingredient and spooned a few tablespoons onto the bottom half of the puff pastry and used a brush to smooth it into a thin layer over the lower half of the dough.

I carefully folded the non mustard side over the top of the mustard side and then transferred the dough to another piece of parchment so I could make the cuts without running off the edge of the paper.

Using a ruler and pizza cutter, I sliced up the dough and then carefully moved each one apart from its neighbor so they would have room to “puff’ in the oven.

Taking another pastry brush, I then painted the surface of each strip with the egg wash and sprinkled a few with the poppy seeds for contrast. Into the 400 degree oven they went for about 20 minutes.

Into the 400 degree oven they went for about 20 minutes.

They smelled very good while in the oven, something about all that butter I guess…

They puffed so nicely.

These were perfect for munching on and so easy to make. I did like that the mustard flavor really came through. I think the next time I entertain these easy appetizers will be on the menu!

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FFwD: Chocolate Eclairs

These were so good! I really enjoyed having Dorie hold my hand through this whole recipe. I just love how her descriptions gave me a great sense of how my various ingredients were coming together! Here are a few pictures of the process.

For the chocolate filling: whole milk, egg yolks, cornstarch, bittersweet chocolate, sugar, salt and butter.

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FFwD: garlicky crumb-coated broccoli

I’m so excited to be back and cooking with my friends at FFwD! Here is my garlicky broccoli. We really enjoyed this recipe and will make it again!!

I started with the star of the show – broccoli, and added a cast of supporting characters including butter (always a favorite), garlic, mint, parsley, orange zest (I was out of lemons), bread crumbs, and salt and pepper.

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FFwD: Marie-Helene’s Apple Cake

 This weeks recipe is fantastic. I made it in honor of one of my fantastic co-worker’s birthday and it was a hit to say the least. It was chock full of appley-custardy goodness!

Now I love apples, specifically crisp, crunchy and sweet apples, so this recipe really hit the mark.

I gathered together flour, sugar, butter, salt, baking powder, vanilla and eggs (not shown). Earlier that day I picked up a variety of apples: honeycrisp, fuji, ambrosia, and two smaller galas.

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FFwD: Hachis Parmentier (aka French Shepard’s Pie)

Well you couldn’t go wrong with this week’s recipe! Mashed potatoes, cheese, and meat – really the most easy to please combination if there was one. I was very excited to try Dorie’s recipe since I have made English Shepard’s Pie many times and was interested to see how the flavor differed from my old standby recipe. 

Dorie has broken this recipe into three parts: Beef and Bouillon, Sausage Filling, and Potato Topping.

Let’s get started with the Beef and Bouillon first.

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French Friday’s with Dorie: Spicy Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup

 This is spectacular!

The chickeny-coconutty-limey goodness is something to write home about, let me tell you. I love soup, I mean I really love it. I could eat soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner for a very long time if needed. However, my soup making usually revolves around roasted vegetables, tomato broths and such, so I was very excited to broaden my horizons and make this new Vietnamese soup from “around my french table”. I had a few misgivings when I prepared my shopping list for a trip to the grocery store. See I love coconut but my dear husband is not a fan, so I was hoping against hope that he would like this soup despite coconut being included on the ingredient list. Frankly, I was hoping that I could have everything prepared before he got home so he wouldn’t see the can of coconut milk and then he would taste the magical soup – his taste buds would explode and he would ask me to make this soup everyday for the rest of our lives….er, well a girl can dream right? In reality, I made this soup and thought of a few things I could make quickly for him if I needed to -just in case!

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French Friday’s with Dorie: Gerard’s Mustard Tart

The next recipe the FFwD bakers made this week is Gerard’s Mustard Tart. This was a very interesting tart for me to try since I could not think of anything that I had ever tasted that had this flavor profile. This very interesting tart included these ingredients: carrots, leeks, fresh rosemary, eggs, heavy cream, Dijon mustard and grainy mustard, salt and white pepper. 

We start with Dorie’s Tart Dough on page 498 which calls for flour, a little sugar, salt, unsalted butter, eggs and cold water. I filled the bowl of my food processor with the flour, sugar, salt, and butter, and pulsed it just until the butter was mixed into the flour. Next I added the egg and water and pulsed until it was just incorporated. I dumped the contents onto the countertop and pressed the dough into a ball. While I was preparing the ingredients for the tart I let the dough chill in the refrigerator before I rolled it out.

Once the dough was rolled to the approximate size I needed, I placed it in a tart pan with a removable bottom and put it back in the freezer for about an hour.

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