Brittany Part Two

Church

Last October, I hiked a good part of the Sentier des Douaniers, the winding trail that traces the coast of Brittany.   Just last week I hiked another part of the trail, the eventual goal being to hike the entire Breton “peninsula”. The Sentier des Douaniers was once trod by customs agents on the alert […]

Yogurt Cake Revisited

gateau marbre

I have a dinner coming up, and I want to make a delicious but simple cake for dessert.  I considered plenty of options and settled on an old favorite, Yogurt Cake.  This, as those of you who have read On Rue Tatin, is a cake I discovered one day at my son’s school during a […]

Sweet Potatoes and Eggs – French Grill

FRENCH sweet potatoes

I got to thinking about eggs the other day. My thoughts were stimulated by my friend Betty who gave me, as a hostess gift, a dozen eggs from her husband’s chickens. I specify the “her husband’s” part. Louis – the husband – takes care of chickens the way he takes care of everything, with enormous […]

Confit of Peppers

peppers

Every year I make a batch of pepper confit (confit means to cook very slowly usually in oil or fat) with Doux des Landes (capsicum annum) grown in the fields of Criqueboeuf sur Seine, hardly considered pepper country.   Criqueboeuf-sur-Seine is just a few kilometers from my house in Normandy, the land of lettuce and leeks, […]

A Thanksgiving Cadeau

egg flowers

Each year as Thanksgiving approaches, I’m thinking about what exciting little dish I can insert into the holiday weekend, un “petit cadeau” to get people’s attention.  I entertain a mixture of French and American guests, and I love planning menus and activities (which often revolve around the menus). As I cooked my way through an […]

Cooking and Teaching with a Social Purpose

French cooking and culture zucchini and goat cheese verrines

  Last week was extraordinary It began ten years ago, when Evelyn Isaia and her daughter, Camilla, came to a week-long cooking class I was teaching in Paris. By weeks’ end we were friends and over the years we’ve kept in close touch; I taught a class at her home in Miami, and when she and her […]

Optimism and Lemon Meringue Pie

Since the election I’ve been searching for optimism.  I’ve found some. There is optimism in people gathering  round.  At the market yesterday, it was a flurry of friendship as people came to me to ask questions, express their feelings and opinions. There is optimism in a woman standing for president, and knowing more people voted […]

From the Farm

  It’s school vacation, again. Every six weeks French students have a two week break, and parents adjust.  I used to think this was insane but I’ve come around.  When I see how hard students work, a two week vacation every six weeks begins to make sense.  Most French families I know pack up their […]

Concarneau – Brittany’s Best

Brittany. It’s a magic land.  I just returned from a few days respite in Concarneau, in the Finistere,  a bustling sea port of 20,000 settled around its crown jewel, the Bay of Concarneau. City planners long ago knew the beauty they held in their hands, and specified that houses on the coast could be of any […]

Writing a Recipe

Writing a recipe is like taking a cook’s hand and leading them, simply and directly, through the construction of a puzzle to an impressive (and delicious) result. It involves clear and simple explanations that create visuals in the minds’ eye; the cook must understand and “feel” the right way to proceed. Here are the basic […]