France Recipes

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Scallops, Smoked Salmon and Citrus Recipe

We hosted a 4-course meal last week so I wanted to share one of the dishes I prepared. We often entertain  at home and as I get busy in the kitchen, I never have time to take a pretty snapshot between the time of the preparation until the plate is ready to serve our guest. I didn't have time to take a photograph of the starter but since I love seafood, I didn't mind repeating a similar dish for today's recipe. I used pan-seared coquille Saint-Jacques (scallops) and dressed them in a healthy manner as a great way to begin the meal. 

The idea behind the presentation was to find a good balance of color and texture. I made a carpaccio of dill-coated smoked salmon and radish, then also accompanied the scallops with avocado, blood oranges (yay! they're in season), Persian cucumbers, fried wasabi-flavored green peas and a sprinkle of candied walnuts.

I modified the dish I initially served last week by adding Sriracha Guacamole.

Seafood Menu



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Paris Boulangerie & Patisserie Guide (7 Tips to Make Your Paris Trip Delicious) Recipe
After seeing family and friends (of course), the part of a trip to Paris that I most look forward to is visiting the myriad bakeries and pastry shops (boulangeries & patisseries) that the city has to offer. However, over the past decade I've noticed a trend of "industrialization" and franchising of bakeries that has dramatically reduced the quality. To be sure, there are still shops that make products unrivaled by anything you could hope to find in the States. Unfortunately, there are also enough imitators around now that you can just as easily spend your hard-earned money on a pastry or croissant that is far worse than the ones sold at your local Costco. So how does one separate the wheat from the chaff? It's actually not too difficult if you're a bit observant. Here are some tips to help you on your quest:
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Seared Scallops with Hollandaise Sauce Recipe

Papa (my dad) cooks only a few times a year. He cooks on Maman's birthday and on Valentine's Day. And I can already predict what he's going to make: my mom's favorite, coquille Saint-Jacques (scallops).

First he sears the scallops, then finishes the cooking in the oven. Papa doesn't cook very often but he cooks scallops to perfection. He's always been very macho, saying he doesn't help with the housework, but I know he's a true romantic. Every week he brings my mom her favorite flowers and he serenades her with Vietnamese songs (he just bought an electric guitar). They've been married for 36 years now. My husband Lulu and I have been married only for 6 years and I hope we're still as happy as my parents in 30 years. Lulu might not make me coquille Saint-Jacques, but I can always hope!

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