French Recipes

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 an 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 then 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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Caribbean Crab Pilaf Recipe (Matete) Recipe

Caribbean Crab Pilaf Recipe (Matete)

09.24.14 by Jackie

When I went back to Paris last summer, Papa told me about their recent vacation to the magical islands of the French West Indies (Antilles francaises), Martinique and Guadeloupe. He told me about the food he ate there and about a particular dish he adored called Matété (also named Matoutou). It's a spicy crab pilaf and its preparation is very similar to our Vietnamese crab cua rang muối.

The difference from the Asian dish is the flavorings, which consist of fresh thyme, celery, flat-leaf parsley, bay leaves, green onions and fresh Scotch bonnet peppers. We planted hot chile seeds at the beginning of the summer and they're just about ripe and ready to be cooked!

 


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