Monthly Archives: January 2013

goat cheese briouates

It’s easy but it takes a little while to make so invite your guests in the kitchen to prepare them with you!

Goat cheese briouates are a Moroccan delight, crusty and soft, savory, to eat as starters or as an appetizer, serve it on a plate or in a buffet…

Don’t hesitate to replace the spices and herbs to make different kinds.

 

Here is the recipe of the day!
brick paper (or fresh rice paper for the gluten intolerant)

fresh goat cheese

pistachio (chopped coarsely)

1 organic lemon (washed)

a few mint leaves

2-3 saffron threads

Put the saffron threads in a teaspoon of water.

Use a zester to remove the zest of the lemon then cut it thinly with a sharp knife.

With a fork, mash the goat cheese and mix with the saffron, the zest, the pistachios and the mint.

Put one small spoonful of this mix on a brick sheet and roll to form triangles.

Oil a frying pan and cook the briouates until golden (about 3 minutes on each side).

Serve hot, at room temperature or even cold. 

Don’t forget the napkins: it’s crunchy!

If you want to replace the saffron, the mint and the pistachios, here are a couple ideas:

basil, pine nuts, parmesan

coriander, caraway powder, almonds

hazelnuts, garlic, rosemary

cooking classes (in Belgium)

If you’re interested in cooking classes, here is the program!

The classes are in French and given in Belgium.

cours-de-cuisine-bio

If you’d like cooking classes in English, I give them at people’s house. Invite some friends and have a cooking party!

irresistible tapenade


 An irresistible recipe, under the condition that you like the ingredients!

Don’t hesitate to make twice the amount as you can keep it for about 2 months in the fridge.

Well, in my house, it never lasts that long and we use it on bread, on pasta, or on steamed vegetables. 

Of course, but do I have to repeat it, the quality of the ingredients makes all the difference.

I received salted capers (hard to get in my neighborhood)  and they’re more subtle than those preserved in vinegar. But if you only have those preserved in vinegar, it’ll be delicious too!

You won’t need three Michelin stars to make it right, nor just one star for that matter, just a small food processor, a blender, or,  for the purists, with a mortar, a pestle, and some muscles.

250g pitted black olives (not too salty if possible)

3 tbsp of drained capers (or rinsed if it’s preserved in salt) 

50g of anchovies

2 pressed garlic cloves

thyme, rosemary (as the chef feels it)

10cl olive oil(and a little bit to cover and preserve)

1 tbsp of lemon juice (unless you use capers in vinegar) 

freshly grounded black pepper

Mix all the ingredients but the pepper and the lemon juice.

Don’t overmix as it’s better if it’s a bit lumpy and not too smooth.

Add pepper and lemon juice.

Pour in a sterilised jar, knock the bottom of the jar on your hand to have less air inside the mix and cover with olive oil to prevent oxidation.

With a few slices of fresh bread…! Irresistible!

Farewell 2012: my pick of cookbooks

First of all, I wish you a delicious new year with great, sustainable ingredients, fabulous ideas, great inspirations… speaking of which, as I find a lot of mine in various cookbooks, here are some I loved in 2012.

It’s a bit conventional to make this kind of recap, it’s very personal and subjectives but I love it (and dive back into the books, drooling at the recipes and pictures).

I chose those books because they’re beautiful in many ways: the design, the pictures, the writing, the recipes… I almost smell each plate by looking at them.

The order of presentation doesn’t matter. I couldn’t pick a favorite anyway!

So here it goes:

“Bouchon Bakery” T. Keller & S. Rouxel (Workman)

The techniques are well explained and you’ll need it to get to most of those recipes. Especially if you want to obtain the same result. What I love about this book is that it pushes you to go further, to get better. It’s motivating. It’s not easy but the result is worth every effort.

Although, if you’re already a cook and know a bit of pastry, you should get around many recipes. 

I can smell the butter cooking and mixing with the sugar. I can feel the crackling of the biscuits under my teeth…

 

“Japanese Farm Food” Nancy Singleton Hachisu (Andrews Mc Neel)

I guess that finding a book on Japanese cuisine is not a surprise as I really love it. I think Japanese food is not only tasteful, is delicate and healthy. This book is not only a cookbook. It’s the story of the writer who travel the world before marrying a Japanese and staying there. You discover a country to her eyes and her taste buds.

I only wish I could go there myself!

“Jerusalem – a cookbook” Y. Ottolenghi & S. Tamimi

The pictures are saturated in delicious colors, the recipes are easy and delicious, the text is interesting and personal… But what is really inspiring, is the cultural presentation of a country through food and the hope that those food traditions could make people come together instead of fighting each other. 

 

“What Katie ate” Katie Quinn Davies (Studio)

I liked this book because of it’s paper and layout. It is a joy to get through each page. But Katie can write and cook as well as taking pictures (so many talents!). Those are everyday recipes, easy to follow with available ingredients and it’s possible to get the same result at home without too much effort or fuss. 

“Rockpool” Neil Perry (New Holland)

I don’t know how I discovered Neil Perry. I have almost all his books and I’m happy with all of them! This one is a bit different then the previous one as it is more refine food, restaurant like. The only problem is I live in Belgium and can’t get the same ingredients used. Anyway, I still am inspired by the recipes and I love the tone used in the text. I’m a big fan of Mr Perry… Maybe some day, I’ll stop by one of his restaurant (on my way to Japan, maybe…!).

He has a new one coming in February or March and I’m already waiting for it!