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Salad Nicoise  Recipe

Salad Nicoise

09.02.09 by Jackie

If you're ever fortunate enough to go to Paris, you are bound to walk by many sidewalk cafés, brasseries, bistros and the like. As ubiquitous are the chalkboards that guard the entrances to these eateries, calling out the specials of the day. On almost all of them, you will find salade niçoise.

This is not the tuna salad that one traditionally finds in America, slathered in mayonnaise and sweet pickles. Salade niçoise hails from the Côte d'Azur; region of France, and is named after the city of Nice. It is a combination of tomatoes, potatoes, green beans, eggs and canned tuna packed in oil. It is typically topped with anchovies and Dijon vinaigrette.   Like many French dishes, the name may evoke visions of elegance and glamour, but in reality the dish is the result of the vegetables and proteins available in that region of France. Put another way, it's really just a fancy way of describing a tossed salad from Nice.

I personally love this dish, because it is easy to make and perfectly captures the flavors of  the Mediterranean. It won't replace the traditional American-style tuna salad, but instead provide you with a healthier alternative.


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Hash Browns with Goat Ricotta and Chorizo Recipe

Lulu worked from home today, so I brought him breakfast in bed. I love this little ritual we have once in a while. It's my way of showing him how much I love him. I love seeing my hubby's smile when I give him special treats in the morning.

I made some hash browns with goat ricotta cheese and placed a surprise vegetarian chorizo in the center. The chorizo adds a little spiciness to the dish without overpowering the hashbrowns and also some protein. The goat cheese has a tangy taste and velvety texture that complements the other components of the dish quite well.  There's nothing wrong with good ol' fashioned hash browns (we get them from the local pancake house all the time), but if you're in the mood for something a little different, this is a great recipe to try.


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Peanut Butter Caramel Dip with Sliced Apples Recipe

Yesterday, I packed some grapes for the girls when packing their school lunches. I thought I would make something different today. I had a little leftover caramel au beurre salé from the weekend. It's a sweet caramel  sauce with salted butter. We drizzle it over ice cream. I decided to mix a little creamy peanut butter into the caramel, along with some raw honey that I just discovered at the local market.

Peanut butter caramel is a great dip with any fruit, drizzled over ice cream or even on celery. Enjoy!


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Croque-Monsieur: A Perfect Back To School Lunch Recipe Recipe

In France, the croque-monsieur sandwich is as much a staple of school children's lunches as the PB&J is in America. I grew up with them, and they are still the ultimate comfort food for me. 

The girls are going back to school today and I wanted to share with them one of the fondest culinary memories of my childhood. When I was in middle school, I would come home early on Wednesdays. Since I didn't eat lunch at school, I would always make myself a croque-monsieur.

Croque-monsieur is super easy to make. All you need is a few ingredients such as sliced white bread, emmental cheese and ham (I used smoked turkey). To make it fancier, I bind all the ingredients together with a Mornay sauce, which is basically a béchamel with cheese. I use béchamel a lot; it's really just a white sauce made of flour, butter and milk.

 


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Vichy Carrots (Carottes Vichy) Recipe

Vichy Carrots (Carottes Vichy)

08.03.09 by Jackie

Carottes Vichy is named after the town of Vichy, located on the banks of the Allier River in the northern part of the Auvergne region in France. Vichy is famous for its numerous spas and its carbonated water, which is used in this dish to soften the carrots.

This recipe is ultra easy. All you need are some carrots, some Vichy water and some butter.

Veni, Vidi, Vichy! Maybe it's just me but I find this funny. It's in reference of Julius Caesar's immortal words "I came, I saw, I conquered" when he announced to the Senate his victory over Pharnaces. I spent 5 years studying classical Latin in school; that's probably the only few things I remember.

As a child, carrots Vichy was probably my favorite meal at the cafeteria of my elementary school. It was easy to eat (I was a slow eater), tender, sweet and so flavorful. For lunch time, I remember it was always served with a filet de merlan au citron et persil, which is a pan seared sage-flavored whiting (fish) drizzled with lemon juice with some capers and parsley.

Check back often to follow my French-inspired menu this week. We're having a 4-course "French meal" in honor of the opening of the movie called Julie and Julia

 


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