French Recipes

French Green Lentil Cake Recipe Recipe

French Green Lentil Cake Recipe

10.30.14 by Jackie

Growing up in France, I never celebrated Halloween as a child. The closest events I remember were during Mardis Gras, which are Carnival celebrations after the Epiphany or King's Day. So if you notice little Aria's Halloween costume and thought you'd be scared, I miserably failed that mission. My goal was to make her as cute as possible and let her enjoy the festivities. For this, we've gone through several costumes, which she will use for the events she'll attend in the coming days.

Today, we went to the one at our local library. I had just finished preparing dinner and snapped a photo of the quick and easy dish to share with you. For this vegetarian meal, I used shallots, garlic, French Puy green lentils, thyme, parsley and day-old baguette bread.

As a general rule, I try to give Aria meat or fish at least 3 to 4 times a week and we follow the rest of the family's vegetarian diet the other days.Aria Halloween Costume


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Colorful Dessert for Diwali Celebration Recipe

Colorful Dessert for Diwali Celebration

10.22.14 by Jackie

Today Aria's preschool teachers planned a small Diwali celebration in school. Diwali is a Hindu festival and it's India's biggest holiday of the year. It's also known as the "festival of lights." The day began with a non-religious story of Diwali, then there was a beautiful Rangoli demonstration (an art and craft session), followed by a potluck lunch for the boys and girls. I volunteered to bring a nut-free dessert for the children and since I knew other mothers would bring typical, popular Indian desserts, Aria and I prepared a colorful, playful dessert instead for the children. 

Rangoli picture

For the occasion, I transformed our little Aria into an Indian princess and tried to match the dessert with her colorful, festive attire. The dessert consisted of individual servings of a cookie baked in a mini cupcake liner and filled with cardamom-flavored triple chocolate cream (lemon, strawberry and milk chocolate). Needless to say, the children adored the sweet treats and Aria was so proud to tell her classmates she had helped preparing them.

Indian clothes


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Vegetable Curry Pastie Recipe Recipe

Vegetable Curry Pastie Recipe

10.14.14 by Jackie

I was determined to replicate these vegetable curry pasties after a date night with my husband Lulu in Redwood City in the Bay Area. We went to watch Gone Girl, a film adaptation of the critically-acclaimed book by Gillian Flynn. After the movie, we were a bit hungry and went to Café La Tartine across from the AMC Cinema for a quick bite. 

First, I prepared an onion and chive-flavored savory pie crust, then I prepared simple curried vegetables. I stuffed the baked pastry with the spicy vegetables and cooked them for 35 minutes until golden brown. It's that simple! I saved the leftover individual pasties and stored them in the freezer so Lulu can have some whenever he wants.


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Triple Chocolate Mousse Recipe Recipe

Triple Chocolate Mousse Recipe

10.10.14 by Jackie

This whimsical chocolate dessert marks the onset of the holiday season. The sweet treat consists of espresso dark chocolate, orange and salted caramel milk chocolate layers. If you omit the garnish, you'll notice that the dessert is egg-free and gluten-free. 

Having an almost 3-year old at home is a constant reminder that I need to get prepared to celebrate Halloween. We've gone through so many costume ideas already, I wonder which one Aria will finally agree on when the times comes! For this dessert, I prepared three different flavors of chocolate mousse. The mousse required very few ingredients: milk, whipping cream, butter, sugar and of course chocolate (the star of this sweet treat!). 


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Wine-Braised Chuck Roast with Pasta Recipe

Wine-Braised Chuck Roast with Pasta

09.30.14 by Jackie

Baby Aria's choice of meat, by far, is beef. And the more tender it is, the more she likes it. I really enjoy making one-dish meals for her. Today, I seared boneless beef chuck steaks, then braised them in wine (the alcohol cooks off during the braising process). Once tender, I boiled campanelle pasta and transferred it to the beef pot. The flavorful gravy sneaked into the cavities of the odd-shaped trumpet-like pasta, which made it more fun for Aria to eat.

I flavored the dish wth fresh thyme, clove, parsley, tomato paste. bay leaf, turnips, onions and garlic. The key ingredient, though, is drinking-quality red wine. C'est tout ("that's it!")!


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