Susan Herrmann Loomis smWelcome to life and cooking in France! I am so happy that you’re here.

You’ll find in your welcome basket a simple but elegant menu à la française, a list of seasonal ingredients to guide your cooking, and my favorite kitchen tools to make your life in the kitchen easier and more efficient!

Now that you have all of this, I encourage you to go into the kitchen, light up your oven and your stove, and start cooking! Pleasure awaits!

Contents

I.  A Very Special French Menu

  • Walnuts and Roquefort cheese
  • Aioli with assorted vegetables
  • Lamb Persillade
  • Green salad with herb vinaigrette
  • Moelleux au Chocolate
  • Printable menu
II.  French Wine Recommendations
III.  Seasonal Produce Guide
IV.  Kitchen Tools I Can’t Live Without

french-menu

ONE OF THE WORLD’S BEST AMUSES BOUCHE

WALNUTS WITH ROQUEFORT CHEESE

The French are big believers in the health attributes of the walnut. Convinced they make the brain stronger, they also believe, firmly, that six walnuts a day will keep rheumatism and arthritis at bay.  Health attributes aren’t the most important thing about the walnut here, though.  Walnuts are revered – that is the correct term – for their flavor, their delicate crunch, their toasty temper when they are roasted in the oven.

My favorite way to eat them, though, is freshly cracked and set atop some roquefort cheese that I’ve gently spread on a piece of freshly baked, whole wheat bread. Together, these three ingredients make a sublime snack, apéritif, even as dessert, with a few dried figs alongside.  When you’re looking for roquefort, if you can find that made by Carles or Gabriel Coulet, you know you’re in the presence of heaven. These are the last two artisanal producers of roquefort in France, and their products are beyond reproach, stunningly delicious.

There isn’t a recipe for the delicious combination of roquefort, walnuts, and whole wheat bread.  There are three key things to remember, though, before assembling this combination of ingredients. Get the best and most fresh walnuts you can find; look for either Carles or Gabriel Coulet roquefort. If your cannot find them, use the best possible blue cheese available. Finally, get yourself a delicious loaf of whole wheat bread.  Invite some guests, pour each a glass of your favorite lightly chilled white (try a Mont Louis sur Loire), and enjoy!

 

divider-long

AN ELEGANTLY SIMPLE, VERY FRENCH FIRST COURSE:

aioli by Susan Herrmann Loomis

AIOLI WITH ASSORTED VEGETABLES
AIOLI AUX LEGUMES ASSORTIES

Aioli is the kind of dish that creates a fete, even if it’s just being served to the family. Everyone can always find something they love! Use the recipe as a guide, and find the best, seasonal vegetables you can!

**ASTUCE – when blanching a variety of vegetables, you do not necessarily need to change the water. Begin with the mildest tasting, and end with the strongest tasting, such as any brassicas (broccoli, cauliflower) or root vegetables (turnips, rutabagas).

Print Recipe
For the Aioli
For the Aioli
Servings
Ingredients
  • 6 garlic cloves green germ removed
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 cups neutral oil 500ml
  • 1 cup fine quality extra-virgin olive oil, 250ml
  • 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Servings
Ingredients
  • 6 garlic cloves green germ removed
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 cups neutral oil 500ml
  • 1 cup fine quality extra-virgin olive oil, 250ml
  • 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
For the Aioli
Instructions
  1. Make the aioli:  make a paste of the garlic and salt in a mortar and pestle, by working the pestle around slowly, always in the same direction, in the mortar. If you don't have a mortar and pestle, either finely mince the garlic with the salt, transfer it to a medium-sized bowl and press on it with a wooden spoon until it makes a rough paste, or simply mince the garlic and salt together in a food processor.
  2. 2.  If you used a food processor to mince the garlic and salt together, transfer the mixture to a medium-sized bowl. Whisk in the mustard and egg yolks until they are blended with the garlic and salt then, using either the mortar or a whisk, add 1/4 cup (60ml) of the neutral oil very slowly in a fine, fine stream, until the mixture becomes thick. Don't add the oil too quickly or the mixture will not emulsify.
  3. 3.  Add 1 teaspoon of the lemon juice to the oil and garlic mixture, then add the remaining oil very, very slowly, whisking or turning the pestle constantly. The aioli will gradually thicken to the consistency of a light mayonnaise. Adjust the seasoning, and add more lemon juice if it needs more tang. If it becomes very, very thick you might add 1 tablespoon warm water, to loosen it.
  4. 4.  Taste for seasoning, and adjust with salt if necessary. Aioli will keep for several days in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, but it is best served within 24 hours of being made.
Share this Recipe
Print Recipe
Assorted Vegetables
Assorted Vegetables
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 pound potatoes unpeeled, 500g
  • 8 ounces carrots cut in half crosswise,then in lengthwise quarters, 250g
  • 1 small head cauliflower florets separated, stem discarded
  • 1 celery root peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch by 3-inch (1.25 x 7.5cm) pieces
  • 1 head of lettuce such as greenleaf, red or green oakleaf, romaine, trimmed, washed, and patted dry
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 pound potatoes unpeeled, 500g
  • 8 ounces carrots cut in half crosswise,then in lengthwise quarters, 250g
  • 1 small head cauliflower florets separated, stem discarded
  • 1 celery root peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch by 3-inch (1.25 x 7.5cm) pieces
  • 1 head of lettuce such as greenleaf, red or green oakleaf, romaine, trimmed, washed, and patted dry
Assorted Vegetables
Instructions
  1. Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan, cover with water, add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a bay leaf if you have one, and bring the water to a boil. Cook until the potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave them in the pan to stay warm.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (roughly 1 tablespoon (15g) salt for 1 gallon (4 liters) water). Prepare a large bowl filled with ice water.
  3. Blanch the carrots until they are just tender but still have a slight crunch, about 4 minutes. Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon or ladle and plunge them directly into the bowl of ice water. When they are cooled through, remove and pat them dry with a tea towel.
  4. Return the same water to a boil, and blanch the cauliflower until it is tender with some crunch, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to the ice water, let cool, pat dry.
  5. Return the water to a boil and blanch the celery root until it is just tender through, 4 to 5 minutes. Refresh in the chilled water and pat dry. Return the water to a boil and cook the potatoes until they are tender through, about 15 minutes depending on their size. Drain and let cool.
  6. To serve, arrange the vegetables on a platter in an attractive fashion, and serve with the aioli alongside.
Share this Recipe

 

divider-long

A SIMPLE MAIN COURSE THAT WILL MAKE YOUR GUESTS SWOON!

LAMB PERSILLADE 

Photo courtesy of Francis Hammond

This is a perfect, and perfectly simple way to prepare succulent French lamb. The technique is more Italian, the result simply divine! The results here give rosy lamb chops – if you prefer yours cooked more, simply increase the cooking time.

Print Recipe
LAMB PERSILLADE
LAMB PERSILLADE
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 small or 6 large lamb chops at room temperature, about 3-ounce; 90g, about 5 ounce;150g each
  • fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1-1/2 cups flat leaf parsley leaves 15g
  • 1/3 cup olive oil 75ml
  • fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 small or 6 large lamb chops at room temperature, about 3-ounce; 90g, about 5 ounce;150g each
  • fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1-1/2 cups flat leaf parsley leaves 15g
  • 1/3 cup olive oil 75ml
  • fine sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
LAMB PERSILLADE
Instructions
  1. To make the persillade, dice the garlic cloves, then combine them with the parsley and mince them together. Place the garlic and parsley in a small bowl and whisk in the oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Reserve.
  2. Place the olive oil in a large heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot, but not smoking, add the lamb chops and sear them on each side, for 1 to 2 minutes per side, seasoning as you do with salt and pepper. You may need to use two skillets if you’re doing the full number of lamb chops.
  3. Spread an equal amount of persillade on each chop, then turn them and cook for an additional minute, which will result in rare chops. If you like, leave them an extra minute for medium rare. Season with salt and pepper, and transfer two small chops or one large one to each of six warmed dinner plates and serve immediately.
Share this Recipe

divider-long

 

DO AS THE FRENCH DO, AND SERVE THIS SALAD AFTER YOUR MAIN COURSE:

salad by Susan Herrmann Loomis

GARDEN SALAD WITH HERB VINAIGRETTE
SALADE VERTE VINAIGRETTE AROMATES

This vinaigrette is delicious as is, though it can serve as a base as well. Add minced shallot or garlic, minced fresh herbs, lemon zest and juice, cracked black pepper. Use this vinaigrette with grated carrots or beets, fresh tomatoes, or any other vegetable mixture.  Use a delicious blend of your favorite greens with the vinaigrette.

Print Recipe
VINIAGRETTE
Servings
cup
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 shallot diced
  • sea salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 60ml
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup mixed herb leaves gently packed
Servings
cup
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 shallot diced
  • sea salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 60ml
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup mixed herb leaves gently packed
Instructions
  1. Whisk the mustard, the lemon juice, the shallot, and a pinch of sea salt together in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil.
  2. Just before serving, mince the herbs and stir them into the vinaigrette. Adjust the seasoning, and toss the salad.
Share this Recipe
 

 

divider-long

ADD THIS VERY IMPRESSIVE (AND VERY SIMPLE) DESSERT:

A simply decadent way to end a delicious meal, this chocolate cake is easy to make and oh so incredibly delicious.

Print Recipe
MOELLEUX AU CHOCOLAT--CHOCOLATE CAKE
MOELLEUX AU CHOCOLAT--CHOCOLATE CAKE
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 75g
  • 1 large pinch fine sea salt
  • 7-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter 217g
  • 5 ounces 52 % chocolate finely chopped, 150g
  • 5 ounces 70% chocolate finely chopped, 150g
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar 225g
  • 2 tablespoons to 3confectioners’ sugar
  • Edible flowers for garnish, such as pansies, primroses, forget-me-nots
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 75g
  • 1 large pinch fine sea salt
  • 7-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter 217g
  • 5 ounces 52 % chocolate finely chopped, 150g
  • 5 ounces 70% chocolate finely chopped, 150g
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar 225g
  • 2 tablespoons to 3confectioners’ sugar
  • Edible flowers for garnish, such as pansies, primroses, forget-me-nots
MOELLEUX AU CHOCOLAT--CHOCOLATE CAKE
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Butter and flour a 9-1/2 inch (22.5cm) spring form pan.
  2. Sift together the flour and the salt onto a piece of waxed or parchment paper.
  3. In a small, heavy-bottomed pan melt the butter over medium heat. Place the chocolate in a large, heatproof bowl. When the butter is melted, pour it over the chocolate and whisk until the chocolate has melted into the butter.
  4. In another large bowl, whisk the eggs with the sugar just until thoroughly combined – do not whisk them to a pale yellow. Whisk in the chocolate and the butter mixture, then quickly whisk in the flour and the salt. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, set the pan on a baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven until the edges of the cake are baked but the center is still soft and tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
  5. Remove the cake from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing it from the mold and transferring it to a
Share this Recipe

 

divider-long

Download all recipes as a PDF by clicking French Menu Recipes

For printable menu cards, click on menu link for download or print options in your browser.

Susan-menu-options

Menu 1- Click Here                   Menu 1a- Click Here                   Menu 2 – Click Here                   Menu 2a- Click Here

French-wine

Susan Herrmann Loomis

Remember that old axiom “Red wine with meat, white wine with fish?”  While this can work, at On Rue Tatin I refer to another wine wisdom which goes something like this:  “If you love the wine, it will go with whatever you are eating.”  Time and time again, this has proven true regardless of color, variety, or vintage.

A contradiction:  no matter how much you love a wine, it probably won’t go well with certain foods like artichokes, vinaigrettes or anything heavy on vinegar, asparagus, rhubarb, and raw vegetables in general.  You can always try, just don’t be put off if it isn’t what you want.

White wines like Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, dry Muscat, and some Sauvignon Blancs go incredibly well with poultry and lighter meats like pork, and have also been known as stunning companions to lamb and magret (fattened duck breast).

Richer red wines (from the Languedoc, Côtes du Rhône, Gaillac, Bordeaux) go well with meats, but they also compliment certain fish (salmon, tuna, and sometimes even cod!)

Rosés go with anything that is served on the terrace on a warm, crystalline day.

Pinot Noirs are exceptional with everything (except a peanut butter sandwich).

This is most general; I suggest you sign up for classes at On Rue Tatin and, with our resident oenologist, Hervé Lestage,  learn lots, lots more!

 

whats-in-season-text

SPRING:

Radishes, tender lettuce, baby onions, scallions, ramps, baby turnips, peas, asparagus, strawberries, cherries, new potatoes, broccoli, new cabbage, new garlic, cauliflower, fava beans, artichokes, spinach, sorrel, Swiss chard, morels,

spring

SUMMER:

Peaches, nectarines, apricots, red, blue, black berries, zucchini, tomatoes, eggplant, garlic, basil, peppers, baby carrots, baby beets, green beans, okra, corn, cucumbers

summer-vegetables

AUTUMN:

Lots of summer vegetables (until end of October) Chestnuts, turnips, carrots, beets, rutabaga, mushrooms, squashes

fall-vegetables

WINTER:

Mache, escarole, radicchio, root vegetables, Belgian endive, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cabbages, beets, celery root

cabbage-and-leeks

kitchen-toolsMany of these things you’ll find in my On Rue Tatin store, and some of them you’ll just have to fly on over to get on-site!

  • KitchenAid Flex Edge Beater
  • KitchenAid Mixer
  • Good Grips Fish Turner
  • Mini Kitchen Silicone Spatulas
  • Balloon Whisk
  • Kitchen Scraper
  • Bamboo Spoons & Spatulas
  • Le Creuset Au Gratin Dishes
  • 9-Inch Chef’s Knife
  • Paring knives
  • Forever Non-Stick Skillets of All Sizes
  • Heavy Copper Pots of All Sizes
  • Bar Keeper’s Friend
  • Drop Stop Pour Disks
  • Wine Opener
  • Wine Saver
  • Silicone Locking Tongs
  • Bamboo Cutting Boards
  • Cotton and Linen Tea Towels
  • Apron

Peruse the site to find out more about:

Classes in France and the U.S.
Country Lunches
Special Classes
Team Building

 

On-Rue-Tatin-sm-logo