Pre-warm oven to 350 degrees.
Roasted Beets and Carrots
3 lbs of carrots (I used purple)
3 lbs of beets (I used golden)
3 large shallots
2 large sweet onions
Extra- virgin olive oil
Fresh ground Pepper
Herbs De Province
Cut the carrots lengthwise to about the size of a thick pencil.
Quarter the beets if small, or cut thinner if they are larger (as in video)
Chop the shallots and onion into large slivers.
Place all of the ingredients into a bowl and coat with extra-virgin olive oil (about 1/4 cup) and sprinkle with sea salt (about a tablespoon), two tablespoons of Herbs De Province and lots of fresh cracked pepper. Place vegetables on one or two baking sheets lined with foil. Place in the oven at 400 degrees until roasted, about 45 minutes. Done when still a bit crisp, but browned.
2 cups of Organic Brown Basmati Rice OR 1 Cup of rice and 1 cup of Hard White Winter Wheat Berry (this is what I used)
Approximately 5-6 cups of water (use vegetable broth and delete chicken base listed below for vegetarian dish)
10 oz of chopped Tuscan Kale
3 tablespoons of Chicken Base
2 large onions, slivered.
Salt, pepper and Herbs De Province to taste.
Place 3 cups of water in a large dutch oven (about 5 quart) and bring to a boil.
Add rice, onion, and chicken base. Stir, cover and reduce to a simmer. Add Kale when most of the liquid is absorbed. Cook for approximately 1 hour total, stirring on occasion and adding additional cup of water if necessary. You may have to cook longer and add more water depending on the conditions. The rice should be a bit chewy. Season at the end with salt, pepper and Herbs De Province.
Here certainly is Nouvelle Cuisine as I blend elements of my family’s cuisine with other European flavours and ingredients. Rapini, or Broccoli Rabe Is a cruciferous vegetable that has fallen in favour to many chefs around the world for it’s nutty, bitter and somewhat pungent taste. It makes a great canvas for the savory tomato based ground chuck sauce. They work very nicely together with different elements and textures – all to compliment each other. Only foodies need apply here. These flavours don’t come with training wheels….
1 1/4 lb of ground chuck
1/3 cup of dried onion (works better than fresh onion as it absorbs tomato juice)
1 tablespoon of fresh cracked pepper
1 teaspoon of fresh cracked coriander (I have a separate pepper mill for coriander!)
1 teaspoon of smoked chipotle pepper flake ( you can use 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes instead, or omit)
1 tablespoon of dried basil
28 oz can of crushed (organic please) tomatoes
1/2 cup of dark brown sugar
1 bunch of rapine (appx. 1 lb.)
1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons of butter
Herbs De Province
2 tablespoons of malt or rice vinegar
1 slightly heaping tablespoon of dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon of sea salt
1 teaspoon of fresh cracked pepper
Brown the beef in a large sauté pan.
Add the remainder of the ingredients and let simmer for 25 minutes on a low to medium flame, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, place the oil and butter in the bottom of another large (6 quart or so) sauté pan on allow to medium flame. When butter melts, add rapini and let wilt for a minute. Add the remainder of the ingredients and TOSS WELL. Cook for another 5 minutes and shut off the heat. The leaves will be very tender and the stems very crisp.
Place the Rapini on a nice serving platter and top with the sauce. Garnish on top with slices of fresh tomato (and freshly shaved Parmesan if desired)
Lots of tender sweet onions with beans and garden tomatoes make the back drop for a phenomenal soup/stew infused with marinated pork. Slow cook this all day in a crock pot and you have a home filled with glorious aroma and a meal that begs to be shared with a nice crusty French Baguette.
2 cups of cleaned, dried navy beans
3 1/2 lbs of cubed pork (I used a pork shoulder) which can be marinated if desired in a dry rub of paprika, onion powder, garlic powder and fresh cracked pepper over night in the refrigerator.
9 cups of water
6 small or 4 large sweet onions diced
2 1/2 lbs of fresh garden tomatoes, cored or 1 1/4 cans (28 oz can) of ripe tomatoes
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1/2 cup of malt vinegar
2 tablespoons of salt
1 1/2 tablespoons of fresh ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons of powdered sage
1 1/2 teaspoons of powdered rosemary
1 1/2 teaspoons of powdered thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons of marjoram or oregano
This is the easy part. Place all of the ingredients into a large crock pot (at least 6 quart), stir well and place on a high heat setting for 4 hours, then low heat for another 4 hours. Stir a few times during the cooking. Place a cookie sheet under the crock pot for potential spillage.
Sumptuous. Velvet. Gorgeous and Fresh. This is what describes a seafood dish that accents the most celebrated fruit of the summer: The Tomato. This very simple, but elegant and delicious dish is part of a second bonus recipe. Place this sauce over a nice German pasta like Spaetzle and you have two killer dishes. Ready in less than 30 minutes? Seriously….
8-9 oz fillet (per person) of a medium to thick fleshed fish such as Hake, Yellow tail or Grey Sole
1 package of Spaetzle (German pasta)
1 stick of butter (Julia approves this I’m quite sure)
1 cup of whipped cream cheese
1 tablespoon of lime juice
1/4 cup of spiced rum (The secret ingredient!)
1 tablespoon of honey
One large or two medium tomatoes, cut into wedges
Place all of the sauce ingredients into a small saucier pot over a very low heat. Whisk occasionally until well blended, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and stir carefully on occasion, careful not to break the tomato wedges up too much. Simmer an additional 7-10 minutes to infuse the delicate tomato flavour.
For Pasta: Have boiling water ready and cook the pasta according to package directions. Spaetzle takes longer than other pastas – about 12-14 minutes.
For fish: season fillet with sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Place in a large sauté pan that has been heated with one tablespoon of butter, one of extra-virgin olive oil over a low to medium heat. Flip after about 4 minutes and remove from pan when it easily flakes, about another 5 minutes.
Top the pasta or fish with this gorgeous sauce and garnish with Herbs De Province.
Serve with a sturdy white wine, or a German white such as Riesling.
Grilled sweet onion, brussels sprouts, baby white carrots and naturally cured maple bacon make for an amazing summer celebration! My friends, the taste of summer has never been more front and center. Grill this now as the summer is at it’s peak and will soon be gone with the cool Autumn winds...
2 medium-large rectangular, stainless grill baskets
1 lb of brussels sprouts, cut in 2 lengthwise
1 lb of carrots, each cut lengthwise into 4 strips (I used baby white carrots…or parsnips may be used)
2 lbs of large mushrooms, cut in two
3 large onions cut into large slivers
1.5 lbs of lardon (french bacon) or naturally cured american bacon
3/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
Sea Salt and fresh cracked pepper
Herbs de Province
Juice of two limes
4-6 tablespoons of brown sugar
You will need one huge bowl to toss everything, or two very large bowls to toss the vegetables. I one bowl, combine the brussels sprouts and carrots. In the other bowl, place the onion and mushrooms. Divide the oil and vinegar equally to both bowls, add 2 teaspoons of salt, 2 of pepper and 2 of Herbs De Province and juice of one lime to each bowl. Toss well.
Over a large hot charcoal fire, grill the Lardon (or bacon) in a grill basket tossing constantly when the fire stats to flare from the melting fat. When slightly/fairly charred and the bacon is cooked, remove from fire and chop into medium pieces. put aside.
Grill the two different bowls of vegetables at separately in a grill basket as the carrot and brussels sprouts take longer. Close the cover of the grill while cooking, but toss the vegetables fairly often for even cooking. When slightly to nicely charred, add a few tablespoons of brown sugar to each grill basket and toss just before removing from fire.
When everything is grilled, place together in a very large serving bowl and toss. Drizzle a bit of extra-virgin olive oil on top and toss again slightly.
Voila! Enjoy the summer’s flavours with this great feast of the season!
Here is a fantastic French country comfort meal that goes back multiple generations in our family. This is a glimpse into the real French country style of cooking that few are allowed to see.
2 1/2 lbs small red or white potato
2 lbs carrots
2 lbs peeled and coarsely chopped shallots
2-2.5 lbs ham (from a shoulder is best)
1 3/4 cups of burgundy wine
2 smoked ham hocks
1/2 cup barley
1/2 stick of butter
4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons of sea salt
2 teaspoons of fresh ground pepper
Melt butter in a large flame and oven proof 6-7 quart cast iron dutch oven like a Staub, Lodge or Le Creuset over a low to medium fire. Add oil ad shallots. Sauté until translucent, stirring, about 3 minutes. Layer the potatoes, ham hocks, carrots and ham. Add wine and barley.Sprinkle sea salt and pepper. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 2-2 1/2 hours, or until the potatoes and carrots are tender. Stir gently several times during cooking, especially scrapping the bottom with a spatula so that the sticking is kept to a minimum.
Voila!! Serve with a nice crusty French bread and hearty red wine like a Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Grilling is one of my favorite ways to prepare my meals. Seafood and vegetables get equal time on my grill, and when you put them together like this…summer never tasted so good…
2 bundles of asparagus (about 2 lbs,)
2 lbs of large, cleaned shrimp
Extra-virgin olive oil
Fresh cracked pepper
Herbs De Province
2 teaspoons brown sugar
Juice of one lemon
Toss asparagus with 1/4 cup of oil, one tablespoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of pepper and 1 heaping tablespoon of herbs de province in a large bowl
Toss shrimp in 1/4 cup of oil, 2 teaspoons of salt, two of pepper and 1 tablespoon of herbs de province
Grill asparagus in a grill basket over a medium heat charcoal fire, turning occasionally, until lightly charred. In the last 2 minutes of grilling, sprinkle the brown sugar over the asparagus and toss well but gently to coat. Put aside while the shrimp cooks.
For the shrimp, toss with tablespoon of salt, one of pepper and one of Herbs De Province and 1/4 cup of oil. Cook over the same charcoal fire in a wire basket until slightly charred and opaque, turning the shrimp with thongs individually.
Place the cooked shrimp on the asparagus and sprinkle with the juice of one lemon. Serve to applause!!
A beautiful savory killer dish that can be served at any summertime outdoor party (especially for the 4th of July!!) to much admiration. The reason?
A) It’s grilled.
B) It involves bacon.
c) It involves bacon.
No typo here… Vive Le Bacon!!
2 lbs of Natural, thick-cut (maple flavoured if available) bacon, strips cut in two. Lardon, or the French version of bacon is unsmoked and perfect for this recipe as it will be grilled and smoked, but this is very difficult to find in the states and so…. bacon it is!
4-5 sweet yellow peppers cut into 1/2 strips, lengthwise (I used baby sweet peppers)
1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup of maple syrup
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Herbs De Province
Toss sweet pepper strips in a large bowl with oil, a generous dash of salt and pepper and 2 tablespoons of Herbs De Province. Place in 2 grill baskets over a hot charcoal fire, tossing occasionally with thongs. When charred nicely, remove from the fire and place back in a large bowl.
Place bacon in same two stainless grill baskets and place over a hot charcoal fire. When the charcoal starts to flare from the melting fat, toss the bacon with tongs to cook evenly. When almost done, drizzle maple syrup over the bacon and continue to toss. Remove from fire when well coated and the syrup thickens on the bacon.
Combine the bacon with peppers, toss well and serve. This is good as a side dish with a fresh summer salad and French bread.
The ocean calls out to me again with a recipe dedicated to my grandfather. A fine French chef in his own right that adored the gifts of the sea. Succulent and savory, I know you would approve. This one is for you Pépère…..
One fillet (appx. 3/4 lb) of a thick cut fish such as hake, cod or sea bass.
1 cup of diced shallots
1 cup of diced sweet orange pepper
6 key limes or two regular limes
Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup of dry French white wine such as Sauvignon blanc, Pinot gris or Chardonnay.
Fresh ground pepper