French Bread and Butter Pudding

French Bread and Butter Pudding. What could possibly be French about bread and butter pudding? Absolutely nothing! This is a typical English dish that I would never eat  growing up. To me, sliced white bread was meant for bacon sandwiches or cheese on toast; it certainly wasn’t pudding. Then I married a man who liked very…

Tarragon and Mushroom Soup

Tarragon and Mushroom Soup. I remember the first time I made mushroom soup was after I got married. I followed a recipe that consisted of sliced white mushrooms, flour to thicken and then stock and milk. It was nice, and for many years I made the same recipe. Then the shops started stocking chestnut mushrooms…

Pork Rillettes

Rillettes of Pork. If you are thinking about a last minute Christmas gift when visiting which won’t break the bank this is a great recipe. If you are unfamiliar with rillettes they are basically a dish of slow cooked pork or poultry in it’s own fat to make a tasty, unctuous spread.  My French friends give these…

Fried Monkfish with Chorizo and Rosemary

Fried Monkfish with Chorizo and Rosemary. I often get inspired to cook from eating out and I love trying to recreate something I’ve eaten and then adding a little twist. It was actually my husband’s dinner  from a La Rochelle visit in the summer. The dish was roasted monkfish with Thyme. I’m not a massive fan of thyme,…

Turkey Ballotine

Turkey Ballotine. Traditionally a ballotine is a French term for a boned poultry thigh which is then stuffed before cooking.In fact, the French seem to like stuffing most things and  you can often buy really good sausagemeat, or farcie with fresh herbs and seasonings.    I remember a horrendously complicated recipe involving deboning a whole turkey and stuffing it…

Seafood en Papillotte

Seafood en Papillotte. I make no excuses for the amount of seafood recipes I post. Living in western France, near to the coast, means that the shops do have a huge range of fish and shellfish to choose from. I’m sure that wherever you are from fish is still expensive, so as ever, I use frozen…

Beef Bourguignon

Beef Bourguignon. This French classic dish is rich, unctuous  and really simple to do. I am still trying to understand the different  cuts of French beef, but  luckily it is clearly labelled ‘bourguignon’! It is a bit different from normal stewing or braising steak as it has a lot more connective tissue left on the meat. This tends…

Roast Cod with Basil Mousseline Sauce

Roast Cod with Basil Mousseline Sauce. I’ve been making this Mousseline sauce for over  twenty years and I can assure you, if you were subjected to a boil in the bag fish portion with a dodgy parsley sauce as a child, this is totally different. A Mousseline sauce is a daughter sauce of a Hollandaise…

Moules au Chorizo

Moules au Chorizo. Everyone knows that seafood goes well with Chorizo but until we went to St Jean de Luz, I had never had mussels with Chorizo.It was amazing. Spicy chunks of Chorizo sausage in a creamy sauce poured over delicate mussels is definitely a match made in heaven. Of course, you have to have huge chunks…

Summer Salmon Timbales

Timbales are a popular French starter so I created these Summer Salmon Timbales. Our French neighbours came for dinner this week and I thought I would ease them in with something familiar before I served the main course. I made a chicken tikka masala, a good old British classic. I have yet to see an Indian restaurant…