French Recipes

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Coffee and Cardamom Flavored Creme Caramel Recipe

Crème caramel is one of my favorite desserts. It's basically a rich custard with a layer of soft caramel. I dressed this one up with a little espresso powder and cardamom.

Making these desserts reminded me of my childhood. My mom would tell me every day not to eat anything before dinner, but after coming home from school, I would always make a beeline to the refrigerator when she wasn't looking. I would get one crème caramel, flip it onto a plate, and let the delicious caramel flow in every direction. It didn't last very long; I would inhale the dessert and lick all the caramel off the plate before I got caught. You would think that I wouldn't really have enjoyed the dessert because I ate it so fast, but there was something thrilling (and delicious) about sneaking a bite without anyone knowing.  Maybe that's why I named my site Pham Fatale.  I've been in the (food) espionage business for a long time!

These covert operations inevitably would make me too full for dinner. I know I was a terrible child! My parents always wondered why I never ate, and have probably been unaware of my antics until now. Sorry Mom!

I think, in America, crème caramel and flan can be used interchangeably.


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How to make a perfect sweet French crepe batter Recipe

There is almost nothing as quintessentially French as crêpes. For those who don't know, a crêpe is a very thin pancake.  It is perfect for a quick dessert, or for a savory meal. I make them whenever I'm missing France. 

Today I was in the mood for something sweet. If, like me, you're craving for something sweet, make some crêpes. Generously stuff the crêpe with fruits (blueberries, strawberries, canned peaches), jam and whipped cream, just sprinkle some plain sugar or spread Nutella inside the crêpe. Yum!


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Butterscotch Creme Brulee Recipe

Butterscotch Creme Brulee

05.17.09 by Jackie

Crème brulées, though tasty by themselves, are a perfect palette for other flavors. My husband Lulu loves butterscotch, so I came to the fairly obvious conclusion that I should combine the two of them.

If you're not a big fan of butterscotch, you can substitute any other flavor that you like but you have to balance the sweetness of the dessert.


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Double Chocolate Madeleine Tea Cakes with Mango Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

The girls had a bake sale at school and needed some help preparing their contribution. Instead of buying cupcakes at the supermarket, I thought it'd be a good opportunity to teach them some valuable life skills. And by life skills, I don't just mean cooking; madeleines are so good that being able to make them qualifies as a life skill.

We decided to make a chocolate madeleine batter and add some mini chocolate chips. To balance with the chocolaty flavor, we topped the miniature sweets with a mango cream cheese frosting.

We ended up making a 150 of them for the bake sale but I think only about 100 of them actually made it to the bake sale! You can of course cut the recipe in half if you want to make fewer.

Chocolate Madeleine Miniature Sweets
These are the mango cream cheese versions, the one in the middle are the cherry cream cheese ones.


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Tarragon Sweet Potato Roast Bell Pepper Soup Recipe

I recently posted the garlic parmesan bread. Per Anna's request, this is the recipe of the tarragon sweet potato roast bell pepper. It's a very soothing soup, especially when you are as sick as I am today. It's my version of comfort food.  But don't wait until the next time you have a cold.  It's super easy to make, so try it out tonight!

I roasted the sweet potatoes to bring out their natural sweetness. And of course, I added some heavy cream to give it a richer mouth feel. It's always nice to infuse a strong herb into a soup, and I chose tarragon for its peppery and sweet liquorice flavor. I have a ton in my garden; it's an easy to grow perennial, and if you're looking for something to add to you herb garden, tarragon is a great choice.


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