Category Archives: Bon Appétit

Nectarine Crumble

 

This recipe has saved me on more than one occasion when I had completely forgotten to prepare/buy dessert for guests arriving thirty minutes later for dinner.

It’s such a versatile dish. You can use pears, apples, peaches, nectarines, berries,etc..

In honor of the end of summer fruit season, I chose to make it with nectarines.

What you’ll need:

1 or 1,5 nectarine per person (depends on the size of your individual dish)

butter

vanilla extract

For the crumble:

Butter

Sugar

Walnuts

Almond Powder

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 210°

Cut your nectarine into even slices.

Slowly melt a bit of butter in a pan (so not to burn the butter.)

Place the nectarines in the pan and drizzle some vanilla extract over them.

Saute them for 5-10 minutes until they’ve softened up a bit and are lightly golden.

While the nectarines cook, melt your butter in the microwave until it’s softened up but not liquified.

Mix the butter, sugar, almond powder until you get a granular but homogeneous texture. Add a couple crushed walnuts in to give it a crunchy texture.

When the nectarines are ready, place them evenly in each dish and pour the crumble preparation over them.

Cook for 15 minutes then place two walnut halves on top of your dish to add a little crispness.

Voilà! A perfect dessert that blends well the tartness of the fruit with the sweetness of the crumble.

Bon Appétit!

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Greek Salad Made Easy

Though you’d never know judging by the weather we’ve had recently, this is still summer season and therefore salad time for me. I usually stick to hearty soups during autumn and winter for a quick and tasty lunch but come April, I’m in full blown salad mode.

I love this greek salad because it’s healthy, tasty and takes less than 10 minutes to prepare, that’s a promise!

 What you’ll need:

Tomatoes

Cucumber

Onion

Feta

Dill

Olive oil

Lemon juice

Salt

Pepper

Olives (optional)

Preparation:

Dice the cucumber and tomatoes (I recommend removing the seeds from both cucumber and tomatoes first.).

Finely chop the onion.

Cut the feta into neat little squares.

Separately, mix the olive oil and lemon juice and add a dash of salt and pepper.

Pour the dressing over your salad.

Add  dill and mix.

Place the salad in the fridge to chill for 10 minutes.

 (I don’t eat olives but you can obviously add them in, I recommend getting the pitted variety.)

 It really is the tastiest and simplest salad to prepare.

 Bon Appétit !

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Sweet Potato Baked Fries

Until last month, I had never tasted sweet potato baked fries. I’ve always associated sweet potatoes or yams with Thanksgiving and holiday cooking as a whole. By the way, if someone could tell me the difference between those two, I would very much appreciate it!

My cousin, visiting from New York, suggested we bake sweet potato fries and I drew a blank stare. French fries, curly seasoned fries, potato wedges-sure. Sweet potato baked fries-never once seen or tasted them. Judging by the look on her face, this was highly unacceptable and something had to be done. So we went to the market, bought a couple sweet potatoes and prepared what has become in a short month one of my all-time favorite side dishes. And possibly the easiest recipe to prepare.

So here it goes:

Wash, peel and cut up your sweet potato in long thin strips. Place them on a flat cooking tray with baking paper.

Lightly oil them.

Sprinkle salt, pepper and paprika.

Bake at 210º (celsius) for 15 minutes, turn them over and bake for another 10-15 minutes (depending on how crispy you like them).

And voilà! The easiest and seriously delicious recipe.

Bon Appétit!

PS: I used white sweet potatoes but you can make this dish with any type of yam or sweet potato.

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Popelini

Lookout people-there’s a new pastry in town: the crème puff pastry or as I’ve always known it, the chou à la crème.

 Popelini  is the 1st  puff pastry shop in Paris-or anywhere come to think of it . Barely two months old and it’s already becoming the go-to shop for a sweet and über trendy dessert.

 I’ve always associated choux à la crème with the classic Profiteroles dessert but Popelini gets back to the basics by only offering the puff pastry in a limited number of flavors.  Neatly aligned by color and flavor, the shells are perfectly circular though a bit bigger than I imagined, which in my book is a always a plus; the more the better. The creamy filling nests inside the chewy rather than flaky or crispy shell inviting you to bite in.

The Parisian fashion scene was obsessed with the cupcake trend last year. I really don’t know why it took them so long to discover the next best thing since sliced bread-but I’m digressing so back to the choux. I can’t imagine that these pretty little mouthfuls of pure delight won’t be popping all around the fashion scene-or any scene really.


We (my mother, cousin & I) tested out six of the eight flavors available that day. I know what you’re thinking, only six? Unfortunately for me, I did not inherit my mother’s good genes and faster-than-Ussain-Bolt-metabolism so we had to call it a day with our six flavors. What can I say people, willpower’s my middle name .

Here’s our very serious take on the choux we indulged over all afternoon (who are we kidding, they were all simply delicious) but let’s be conscientious here:

Madagascar Vanillla:

Filling is creamy but not over-sweet.

Pistachio & Griottes

The lightly sweet pistachio filling has a nutty quality that blends well with the tangier griotte filling.

Rose & Raspberry

The filling has a distinct rosewater accent that somewhat overshadows the raspberry flavor but nonetheless very good. The decorative petal only adds to its beauty.

Praline

The rich praline filling has a hint of a salt flavor that cuts through the sweetness. The contrast between the sweet and savory flavors adds dimension to anotherwise would-be classic flavor.

Earl Grey

Essence of earl grey tea in the filling highlighted with a dab of lemon curd. It’s tea and biscuits all in one!

Caramel Beurre Salé

Anyone who loves caramel candies with salted butter will love this cream puff. Nuff’ said.

So there you have-it’s a puff pastry galore at Popelini.

Popelini-29 Rue Debelleyme-75003 Paris-Tel: 01 44 61 31 44

Opened Tuesday-Sunday

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