Posts from December 2020

Chouettes Owls at La Tuile a Loup, Paris, 5eme Arrondissement, One of a Kind Tableware and More

Chouettes owls at La Tuile a Loup!

For 46 years, La Tuile a Loup in Paris, 5th Arrondissement offers tableware (plates, serving dishes and more) made by artisans from all over France.

In her recent piece in FT, How to Spend It magazine Victoria Woodcock quotes shop owner Eric Goujou as stating "The animal pieces are the most important work I carry".

La tuile a loup chouettes

Not sure the shop selection of ceramic animals includes wolves.

The spirit of La Tuile a Loup reminds me of friends of mine in Angers (France) and their ceramic collection of 400 plus pieces of local craftsmen and craftswomen.

(Chouette Owl picture from the Facebook page of La Tuile a Loup)

Can't Afford Bitcoins, Indulge in a Chocolate Ganache Lingot by Gontran Cherrier

Can't Afford Bitcoins?

Gontran cherrier lingot

Indulge in this Chocolate Ganache Lingot by Gontran Cherrier.

Also not to miss, La Valentino, a chocolate and chocolate Buche de Noel.

Buche gontran

Did not realize that Gontran Cherrier mini-empire is now close to 60 locations including 30 in South Korea.

(* Image from Gontran Cherrier Instagram Feed)

Soft Pillow of Eggs for Brunch, Eggs Edamame Bean Sprouts from Greenfeast, Autumn, Winter by Nigel Slater

Soft pillow of eggs for brunch, Eggs Edamame Bean Sprouts recipe from Green Feast Autumn, Winter (Ten Speed Press, September 2020) by Nigel Slater.


A soft pillow of egg. A tangle of vegetables.

Serves 2

Greenfeast_Eggs Edamame Beansprouts_Page_1_Image_0001


edamame beans, shelled

7 oz/200g

green onions 8

bok choy 7 oz/200g

garlic 3 cloves

large green chiles 2

peanut oil ¼ cup/60ml

bean sprouts 7 oz/200g

eggs 6

nigella seeds 2 teaspoons

cilantro a handful


Bring a pan of water to a boil, add the edamame, and boil till tender — about eight minutes. Drain and refresh in a bowl of ice water.

Finely chop the green onions, discarding the roots and any tough dark green leaves. Shred the bok choy. Peel and thinly slice the garlic. Finely slice the chiles.

Warm half the peanut oil in a large, shallow pan, fry the green onions, garlic, and chiles till soft, then add the shredded bok choy and lastly the bean sprouts, tossing them in the hot oil and cooking for three or four minutes till softened.

Break the eggs into a bowl and beat them lightly with a fork. Add the cooked and drained edamame and the fried vegetables. Season with a little sea salt and black pepper and fold in the nigella seeds and cilantro.

Warm the remaining oil in a large oven safe frying pan, pour in the omelette mixture, and fry over moderate heat for about eight minutes, until the edges have set and the middle is still almost liquid. Heat the oven broiler. Place the frying pan under the broiler and continue cooking for two or three minutes until the center of the omelette is lightly set. (Ideally, it should be a little runny, verging on the point of setting.) Cut in half and serve.

To the basic mixture you can add pretty much any vegetable you have on hand, from fried mushrooms to steamed shredded cabbage. The cooking time is brief, so most vegetables will have to be lightly cooked first. Brassicas such as long-stemmed sprouting broccoli work very well, as do any late autumn beans. I especially like steamed mustard greens.

Greenfeast Autumn Winter COV

(*Reprinted with permission from Greenfeast: Autumn, Winter by Nigel Slater, copyright©2020. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Photography copyright: Jonathan Lovekin © 2020)

Have a Plant Based Vegan Holiday with this Vegan Carrot Cake Recipe from Vegan Christmas by Audrey Fitzjohn

Have a plant based vegan holiday with this Vegan Carrot Cake recipe from Vegan Christmas (Smith Street Books, October 2020) by Audrey Fitzjohn, a photographer, stylist, and freelance writer based in Paris, France. 

Vegan Carrot cake

Preparation 30 minutes – Baking 45 minutes

Serves 8



250 g (9 oz/12 ⁄3 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
125 g (4½ oz) caster (superfine) sugar
2 teaspoons instant dried yeast
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
4 carrots, grated
1 tablespoon white vinegar
180 ml (6 fl oz) canola oil, plus extra for greasing
120 ml (4 fl oz) orange juice
75 g (2¾ oz) raisins
100 g (3½ oz) walnuts

Frosting and decoration
450 g (1 lb) icing (confectioners’) sugar
80 g (2¾ oz) dairy-free margarine
1 teaspoon natural vanilla extract
3 tablespoons lemon juice
30 g (1 oz) walnuts, roughly chopped


Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).

Grease two 18 cm (7 in) round cake tins.

Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon and salt in a bowl. Add the grated carrot, vinegar and oil and mix well with a wooden spoon. Add the orange juice and mix again. Finally, stir through the raisins and walnuts. Divide the batter between the cake tins and bake for 45 minutes or until
a skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes comes out clean. Leave the cakes to cool in their tins for about 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and leave to cool completely.

To make the frosting, beat the icing sugar, margarine, vanilla extract and lemon juice with electric beaters on medium speed for 3–4 minutes, until the mixture is smooth.

Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a wide nozzle. Pipe half the frosting over the top of one of the cakes. Place the second cake on top and pipe the remaining frosting on top of the cake. Scatter over the chopped walnuts and serve.

(* Recipe reproduced with permission from 'Vegan Christmas' by Audrey Fitzjohn- Smith Street Books- October 2020)

French Madeleine Meets Italian Chestnut, Vanilla Chestnut Cream Madeleines from Old World Italian by Mimi Thorisson

French Madeleine meets Italian chestnut with this Vanilla Chestnut Cream Madeleines recipe from Old World Italian 'Recipes and Secrets from Our Travels in Italy' (Clarkson Potter, September 2020) by Mimi Thorisson.


I’m going out on a limb with the inclusion of this recipe. Madeleines are of course French. But in my defense, Torino as we know it was

established by French dukes, and that influence is everywhere, not least in the kitchen. Everyone loves madeleines, one of my favorite recipes.

Some desserts that I consider French have been appropriated by Italy and are very popular, like crème caramel and baba au rhum. So why not madeleines?

Adding chestnuts gives them an Italian feel.

Makes 20 to 24 madeleines

Vanilla Chestnut Cream Madeleines_Page_1_Image_0001


2 large eggs

½ cup / 100 g granulated sugar

¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons / 100 g all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

6 tablespoons / 90 g unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pans

2 tablespoons rum

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

7 ounces / 200 g sweetened chestnut puree

powdered sugar, for dusting


1 Preheat the oven to 400°F / 200°C. Butter two 12-cup madeleine pans.

2 In a large bowl, mix the eggs and granulated sugar. Stir in the flour and baking powder. In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, rum,

vanilla, and chestnut puree. Add the butter/chestnut mixture to the batter and mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Divide the batter

among the madeleine molds.

3 Bake for 5 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F / 180°C. Continue baking until golden brown, another 8 minutes.

Unmold immediately and let cool on a wire rack for 1 minute before serving. Dust lightly with powdered sugar.

Old World Italian_COV

(*Recipe reproduced with permission from Old World Italian 'Recipes and Secrets from Our Travels in Italy' -Clarkson Potter, September 2020- by Mimi Thorisson. Photograph by Oddur Thorisson)

Quiet launch today, on a snow day, of 'Mediterranean Work & Play', for those craving Epicurean remote work

Quiet launch today, on a snow day, of Mediterranean Work & Play, for those craving Epicurean remote work.

Our new venture's first 'bubble' will be in Southwest France.

Sud-ouest (4)_LI

Think 50 miles circle around Toulouse.

Please pass the cheese!

(* Map reproduced with permission from A FIELD GUIDE TO CHEESE by Tristan Sicard, Artisan Books, Copyright © 2020. Illustrations by Yannis Varoutsikos)

Let Okra Flowers Shine, Savor Skillet Roasted Okra Recipe from 'Mosquito Supper Club' cookbook by Melissa Martin

Let okra flowers shine!

Prep, cook and savor this Skillet Roasted Okra recipe from Mosquito Supper Club (Artisan Books, April 2020) by Melissa Martin.

Skillet-Roasted Okra

Okra cooked in a skillet is a great side dish and simple to make. It requires no preparation ahead of time and, if done correctly, is a great accompaniment to just about anything. The key to bringing out the okra’s natural deliciousness is to cook it hot and fast, so make sure your skillets are properly heated. Place two cast-iron skillets in the oven for at least 30 minutes before cooking. This quickly sears the okra on the outside but maintains a crisp center. Like fried okra, the skillet version preserves the okra’s unique flavor and color. Eat it with fresh summer fruit like peaches and plums; with corn, lime, and crème fraîche; and with boiled shrimp and crabs. It also works swimmingly next to fried or sautéed fish.

Serves 4 as a side dish or snack



2 tablespoons (60 ml) canola oil or clarified butter

12 ounces (340 g) tender young okra pods (about 24), sliced lengthwise in half

⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

A couple turns of the pepper mill

Cayenne pepper

1 lemon wedge


Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Place two large cast-iron skillets in the oven to heat for 30 minutes. Line a baking sheet or platter with paper towels.

Carefully remove the hot pans from the oven and set them on the stovetop over medium-high heat. Keep the skillet handles covered to avoid burning your hands.

Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to each pan. Carefully place the okra in the pans in a single layer. Don’t crowd them. Sear in the skillets until golden brown, about 3 minutes, then flip the okra and cook for an additional 2 minutes.

Transfer the okra to the paper towels to soak up any excess oil and use a paper towel or rag to carefully wipe out the excess oil from the skillets.

Toss the okra back into the skillets and season with the salt, some black pepper, a touch of cayenne, and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve immediately.

3D COVER. Mosquito Supper Club

(“Excerpted from Mosquito Supper Club by Melissa Martin -Artisan Books- Copyright © 2020. Photographs by Denny Culbert")

Snow is Coming! Bechamel your Pizza with Brussels Sprouts Pizza Carbonara from Modern Comfort Food by Ina Garten

Buckets of snow are coming to Jersey on Wednesday. Actually wet snowflakes are falling as I write this, a sneak preview to bigger event.

So béchamel your pizza for extra warmth with this Brussels Sprouts Pizza Carbonara recipe by Ina Garten from Modern Comfort Food (Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House- October 2020).

Brussels Sprouts Pizza Carbonara

Makes 4 (9-inch) Individual Pizzas

Brussel Sprouts Pizza (Modern Comfort Food photo credit Quentin Bacon)


For the béchamel:

1½ cups whole milk

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup whole milk ricotta (9 ounces)

2 extra-large egg yolks

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Good olive oil

8 ounces pancetta, ¹⁄₈-inch diced

To assemble the pizzas:

4 (8-ounce) balls store-bought pizza dough

½ cup freshly grated Italian Parmesan cheese

½ cup freshly grated Italian Pecorino cheese

12 ounces Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced (see note)


Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Arrange two racks evenly spaced in the oven.

For the béchamel, pour the milk into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Whisk the flour into the butter and cook for 2 minutes, whisking almost constantly. Whisk in the hot milk, switch to a wooden spoon, and simmer, stirring constantly, for 2 to 5 minutes, until thick enough to leave a trail when you run your finger down the back of the spoon. Cook for one more minute. Off the heat, stir in the ricotta, egg yolks, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper; set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium (10-inch) sauté pan, add the pancetta, and cook over medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until half-cooked. Transfer the pancetta to a plate lined with paper towels and set aside.

Flip over two sheet pans and put 12 × 18-inch pieces of parchment paper on each pan. Roll and stretch two of the pizza doughs into a 9 or 10-inch circle (they don’t want to be perfect!) on the parchment papers. Leaving a 1-inch border, spread ½ cup of the béchamel on each pizza and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan, 2 tablespoons of the Pecorino, and a quarter of the pancetta. In a medium bowl, toss the Brussels sprouts with 3 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle the two pizzas evenly with half of the Brussels sprouts. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the crust is nicely browned, including the bottom. Cut each pizza in six wedges with a large chef’s knife and serve hot. Repeat for the remaining two pizzas.

Note: To slice the Brussels sprouts, trim them and process through the feed tube of a food processor fitted with the slicing disk.


(* Recipe courtesy of MODERN COMFORT FOOD. Copyright © 2020 by Ina Garten. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Photo by Quentin Bacon)