• 1 very fresh fish, preferably sea bass or other fish with good scales.
Be sure to keep head, tail and scales but empty and cut off the fins.
• Rock salt, enough to create a bed under the fish and cover the fish with about
½ inch thickness (approximately 4/5 kilos for a 1.5 kilo fish).
* Egg whites 1-3 depending on how big your fish is and therefore how much salt
you will use (approx. 3 whites for 4 kilos of salt).
• Herbes such as rosemary and thyme or herbes de provence.
• Optional, lemon, celery, fennel or bay leaf.
- Heat oven to 475° F.
- Pour rock salt into a large bowl, Mix in egg whites and herbes, with your hands or 2 big spoons until homogenously moistened.
- Stuff the empty fish cavity with lemons and bay leaf, or other things that inspire you like fennel.
- Put approximately 1/3 of the salt into the bottom of large roasting pan. Pack firmly the remaining salt over fish to completely cover it. This creates a crust that seals in the moisture.
- Bake at 475 degrees F
- Aproximately 30-35 minutes for a 1.5 kilo fish.
- Let rest out of oven for another 10 minutes
- In the baking pan, crack the crust with a knife and peel off salt crust, carefully.
- Clear all the salt away from fish or it will be too salty.
- Then peel off skin with a knife and spoon and serve.
- I generally serve directly from the baking pan because it is difficult to maneuver the fish without getting the salt all over.
- Serve with a Beurre Blanc and Steamed Potatoes or Braised Endives.
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1 head of Chicory lettuce,
Lardons(thick slices of bacon cut in small strips-see image)
Eggs (1 or more)
- Wash and spin dry chicory, cut or tear into small bits and place in a large bowl to be able to mix with vinaigrette more easily.
- Fry up lardons (I keep the fat and pour over salad).
- Boil eggs to “soft-boiled”…. 4 1/2 – 5 minutes in a large pot of boiling water with a little vinegar. To prevent eggs shells from cracking, I pour lots of salt over them while carefully placing them in simmering water.
- Vinegar makes the egg white coagulate in case the shells do crack.
- While eggs are boiling, mix chicory with vinaigrette, place in serving bowl.
- This is best served in a large “open” bowl.
- Sprinkle lardons over the salad and drizzle fat over(optional).
- When eggs are cooked, hopefully just right, crack the shell in half, with a knife, and slice through the egg.
- Spoon out egg halves carefully and place on top of salad.
- Salt and pepper the eggs and serve immediately while eggs are still warm.
1 nice big chicken
1 large onion, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 big moroccan pickled lemons
Green olives (pitted)
1-2 cups water or chicken broth
Olive oil, salt
2 tsp of Ras El Hanout
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1-2 cups water or chicken broth
- Preheat oven to 250°C
- Rub oil all over chicken and sprinkle with salt.
- Bake in oven for approximately 1 hour.
- While chicken is roasting, chop onions and brown in a little olive oil
- in a large pan.
- Add Ras El Hanout, cumin, turmeric, and pepper to onions.
- Cook about 10 minutes, stirring, until onion is cooked.
- Add chopped tomatoes. Cut lemons into small slices and add to pan.
- Add a little water (or chicken broth) and let simmer, adding liquid
- regularly to always have just the right saucy-juicy consistency.
- When chicken is done, take out of pan and carve, then arrange on a
- serving platter and keep warm.
- Mix the “jus”of the chicken in with the sauce and pour sauce around chicken.
- Serve immediately with plain couscous
300 grams of fromage blanc
The closest thing would be farmer’s cheese or cottage cheese
75 grams of white sugar
20 centiliters of whipping cream
2 egg whites (use the yolks for mayonnaise!)
- Drain cheese for 24 hours (Draining containers: 1 per person or 1 big one)
- Prepare small containers that have draining baskets inside, lining them with gauze
- Beat the cheese with sugar until smooth
- Whip the cream until well whipped
- Beat egg whites until they hold a soft peak
- Blend the 3 ingredients very gently and fill containers as full as possible
- Let drain for another 24 hours in refrigerator
- When ready to serve, take draining basket out of container and carefully turn over onto plate, peeling the gauze off carefully
- Serve with a Rasberry Coulis
There are many versions of this in France, a classic dish that is often served on Easter Sunday. This is my “Lots to do today+Dinner party+No time to slave away in the kitchen” version. You will impress your guests as they dig in with a spoon and they will think you did spend your day cooking!
1 leg of lamb
Keep the bone in but have just enough cut off so that it fits in your dutch oven. Oval ones work best.
10 garlic cloves
1- 1/2 cups of beef bouillon
Beer or red wine to cover leg of lamb
I use a Belgian Abbey beer, Leffe Blond
Herbes de provence
(savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, oregano)
Espelette pepper (Basque chili pepper)
Salt and pepper to taste
- Brown well the leg of lamb on both sides in the dutch oven with a little oil or butter. Throw in whole garlic cloves and let them brown a little.
- Cut onions into 6-8 parts and brown in another frying pan.
- Cut tomatoes into 4ths then add the onions and tomatoes to the lamb.
- Add herbes, peppers, beef bouillon and then add beer or wine to just barely cover the lamb.
- Bring this to a simmer and keep it at a very low simmer for 7 hours.
- Be careful not to let boil strongly as this will toughen the lamb.
- Half way through, carefully turn the leg over with 2 large spatulas or very large spoons.
- 30 minutes (or earlier) before you are ready to serve, if there is too much liquid in the pot, raise the heat to reduce this to a nice thick saucy consistence. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.
- Carefully lift the lamb out, keeping it on one piece, and place into a serving plate, deep enough to hold the sauce and vegetables. Serve with large spoon.
- I serve this with couscous/semolina in a separate dish.
½ cauliflower broken/cut into bouquets
1 cube of chicken bouillon
20 cl (1cup) of whipping cream* (crème liquide)
juice of ½ of a lemon
a “filet” (Tbsp) of hazelnut oil
caviar or lumpfish roe (black fish eggs)
salt and pepper
- Boil a pot of water with the chicken bouillon.
- Wash the cauliflower bouquets and put in boiling water (with the chicken bouillon) for about 15 minutes, until tender.
- Drain cauliflower and mix in food processor or blender with ½ of the whipping crème, the lemon juice and hazelnut oil.
- Whip the other ½ of whipping cream until firm, add salt and pepper, then add this to the cauliflower preparation, folding in gently so that the whipped cream doesn’t fall.
- Put in pretty glasses or verrines and chill in refridgerator for 2 hours.
- Serve cool/cold with a small spoon of caviar or lump eggs on top.
- 20 centiliters is equivalent to 0.84 cups but you can use a full cup!
40 cl of milk
60 cl of heavy whipping cream
8 egg yolks
200 grams of castor sugar
2 vanilla beans
- Beat egg yolks with sugar until light and frothy
- Put milk and cream in pan. Split vanilla pods in half lengthwise, scrape seeds into milk and add the pods, then bring to a boil. Take off fire, cover and let the vanilla infuse for 10-20 minutes. This also allows the milk to cool down before adding it to the egg yolk mixture.
- Add this to the yolk/sugar mixture while beating slowly.
- Heat the mixture on medium-low heat, stirring constantly. Using a thermometer, keep at approximately 80 C making sure it does not go above as it would cook the egg yolks. Mixing all the time with a wooden spoon and lots of patience.
- Bring to nappe consistency, so it coats the back of spoon.
- Remove from heat.
- This can be served hot or cold and can be prepared in advance and kept in refrigerator.
about 275 grams of good quality dark chocolat: minimum 70 % cocoa
(In order of preference…Valrhona, Lindt, Nestle)
about 275 grams of sugar
about 275 grams of butter
- Weigh the 4 eggs to define the weight of all other ingredients.
- Whatever they weigh is how much you need of each other ingredient. Eg: 4 french eggs weigh 275 grams.
- Cut a piece of parchment paper in a circle that will fit into the bottom of your cake pan, not up the sides.
- Butter the bottom of the pan and put the parchment paper. Then butter the parchment paper and the sides of pan and coat with powdered cocoa, this replaces using flour for when you de-pan.
- Break chocolate into small pieces and melt in a double boiler. When melted, add butter and gently mix until butter is melted then remove from heat and let cool.
- While chocolate is cooling, in 2 separate mixing bowls, separate egg whites and yolks.
- Beat egg whites until fluffy but not too dry.
- Add sugar to egg yolks and mix with beaters until light and a litlle frothy.
- Pour chocolate slowly into egg yolk mixture until just blended then gently fold in egg whites.
- Pour batter into cake pan and bake at 350 F for about 45 minutes. The cake will rise slowly and when the center has risen and a knife comes out clean it’s done.
- Let cool a little and turn out carefully onto a flat surface, peel parchment paper off then turn back over onto cake dish.
Absolutely decadent served with Crème Anglaise!
4 big onions
50 grams of butter
2 TBSP of oil
1 TBSP of flour
25 cl of white wine
1 liter of water
salt and pepper
6 slices of white bread
100 grams of Comte cheese
Optional:1/2 cube of chicken bouillon for extra taste
- Chop onion into relatively small bits and brown in the butter and oil.
- (adding a little oil to butter prevents the butter from burning)
- When onions become translucent and slightly browned, add flour and let cook for 2 minutes more.
- Then add white wine and reduce.
- When there is almost no more liquid in the pan, add water (with chicken bouillon).
- Cover and let simmer for approximately 20 minutes.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Toast the bread and set in the bottom of the soup bowls.
- Sprinkle half of the grated cheese on top of the bread and pour the onion soup over this to fill the bowls, then sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top and grill in the oven until cheese is golden brown.
You will need soup bowls that can go in the oven!