Flourless Chocolate Cake from the Grill

  Baking a cake over the coals? Quelle idée. But pizza bakes perfectly over blazing charcoal, so why not biscuits, or rhubarb pie, or even a flourless chocolate cake? As any good French chef would do, I headed straight for the flourless chocolate cake, set it over the coals, closed the cover and held my breath.  When I […]

Apricot Shortcake

I was preparing to make my favorite apricot tart for dessert tonight when I  stopped, as though held back by an invisible hand.  This never happens to me.  I love everything about the process of making a tart, from measuring the flour (I know, but I love to do it!), to rolling out the pastry, to […]

The Simple Apple Tart

As the simple black dress is my go-to evening attire, this simple apple tart is my go-to dessert.  It is so easy.  I make my own pastry but if you don’t want to do that, get the best quality pastry you can find. Preheat the oven to 425F (220 C) Roll out the pastry, and […]

How to Test a Recipe – Poached Pears

I have a confession to make. I love to test recipes. It’s creative, it’s finicky, it’s challenging. The aromas are marvelous, the workplace is comfortable and familiar, and you get to taste and share what you’ve just tested. When I talk about testing a recipe, I’m talking about preparing one for publication. It may be […]

Thanksgiving Cooking Class in Paris

I look forward to Thanksgiving every year. I have a source for a big, fat, delicious free-range turkey, but instead of stuffing, roasting, and serving it on a Thursday afternoon before the big game, it will emerge from the oven on a Saturday night, while my guests – mostly French – are in the kitchen […]

Fontainbleau

Today, Seattle friends came for lunch.  They’d already been in Provence for a week, eating truffles every time they turned around.  This, and the fact that all of these people are part of the Seattle food world,  meant that the bar was high. Lunch itself posed no problem.  I had magret de canard produced near […]

Apples Apples Everywhere

Friends recently stopped by with two huge crates of apples that ranged from scrubby green to lush, deep red. When I asked about the varieties I was met with a shrug.  “We don’t know; these trees have always been on the farm,” said Francois Bourdon, who brought them. “Some are for eating, some are for […]