Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Chillin' with Fruit Soup

Paris is HOT right now. I know you think you are suffering in the U.S., but you can shuffle from AC unit to AC unit. My car has AC and the living room has a little room unit. The rest of our house you can fry eggs on most surfaces! Even poor Max is too hot to wiggle his tail.

Thinking about dinner in this kind of heat needs special inspiration. I was checking out the internet in the cool air of the morning and found a post in the Chicago Sun Times. The article that caught my eye was called, Keeping Cool. Yes, I clicked on the link. Nectarine-cantaloupe Soup. Wow......this sounded delicious!

I was just at the Ferme de Gally and bought some huge nectarines, and last Sunday I bought some of this fantastic honey from the Galleries Gourmand. So far, so good. Cinnamon, nutmeg & vanilla!

I have to tell you that when I told the hubby what I was making Fruit Soup, he scrunched up his nose and said, 'Sounds like dessert, not soup'.......I just told him he was going to like it!
Fresh melon chunks, freshly squeezed OJ.....whizz up and chill.

Garnished with blueberries and mint and served super cold, this is a real winner! I'm also thinking of taking the leftovers and throwing it into my ice cream maker, I think this will make some dynamite sorbet.

Stay Cool!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Who is in the Kitchen?

Yesterday was Bastille Day. We get our own private 'airshow' before the big parade on the 'Champs'! Out this way, there is a military airport and 2 days before the parade the planes start to practice. Back in the 'old days' the drone of these old engines would bring my son running into the back garden shouting 'airplanes'! You see the 'look to the sky gene' gets passed on from father to son. Even the 'old pilot' will run to the back garden -to this day- and look to the sky when the planes are flying in formation!

So, before our private airshow began, the pilot announced he would like to prepare our lunch! This menu would consist of a Scallop and fennel salad. We had the ingredients and I said, PLEASE, COOK!

Posted by PicasaHe started the fennel by boiling till tender. Then he sliced it and browned it up on the Le Crueset. He then reduced the fennel liquid and added a star anise! Next step was to saute the scallops and make the butter sauce with the fennel reduction. Is this sounding good or what??
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Here is the end result! Topped with some mache!

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Hey, I think he is welcome back to the kitchen anytime!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Alive and Kickin'

It's the eve of the big game! My normally quiet neighborhood is buzzing! Bleu-Blanc-Rouge is appearing everywhere. Homemade flags are posted on front doors, kids are kicking soccer balls, flags are waving from second story windows.
Wednesday evening my neighbors partied till way past polite! We had our doors wide open and turned off the sound of our TV to listen to them sing and chant. Tonight should be no different. Our dinner will be over in time for the game! We are rooting for the home team!

Last night I started a biga for a Ciabatta. Yes, nothing new......but the recipe is new. I usually turn to Bread by Eric Treuille & Ursula Ferrigno for good results. I wanted to try out a Paul Hollywood recipe from his book 100 Great Breads. Paul always uses fresh yeast and when you watch him on UKTV he makes everything look easy and doable!
The first photo is of the biga after 4 hours. The second is the dough after an overnight ferment in the fridge. Look at that boy bubble!!

The dough was very easy to handle compared to the dough from Bread. Very easy to shape and
place on the baking tray. Both Ciabatta cooked up nice. I'll show you the crumb when I slice some for dinner. I'm thinking garlic bread on the grill......all the better to munch before the game.

Go Bleu!