All posts filed under: French Desserts

healthy recipe: tarte au citron a.k.a lemon tart

While on this diet, I have a difficult time satisfying my sweet tooth, so since I love lemons and it’s considered an approved fruit to consume while dieting, I decided to search here  for a tart (again my favorite) recipe made with lemons or citron (God, I love the French word for it). Here it goes: One 9-inch (23 cm) tart This makes a modest, but very tasty lemony layer. If you want more filling, feel free to double the recipe; any filling that you don’t use can be spread on toast, fresh biscuits, or scones. You could substitute fresh lime juice for the lemon and if you have Meyer lemons, reduce the sugar to 1/3 cup (65g). You can use a favorite tart dough recipe, or the one I’ve linked to. 1/2 cup (125 ml) freshly-squeezed lemon juice grated zest of one lemon, preferably unsprayed 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar 6 tablespoons (85 g) butter, salted or unsalted, cut into bits 2 large eggs 2 large egg yolks One pre-baked 9-inch (23 cm) tart shell …

a french cake recipe from my childhood

When I was little, our extended family had a visiting day once a month, where everyone got together on a specific date and had coffee and dessert. It was the host/housewife’s turn to show off her baking skills and so, she would make a few desserts over a span of a day or two in preparation for the occasion and serve them  in beautiful dishes from her collection of fine china. Being a child, I never turned down dessert and actually behaved during the visit, per my mother’s request,  just so I could earn  my fair share of the goodies.  I didn’t know it then, but I totally appreciated cakes with dried fruits and when we moved to the United States, those recipes and the tradition all disappeared. Fast forward to a hundred years later (being today) I was actually, extremely overjoyed  when I came across here, a recipe similar to or perhaps even the same as the one  my mother and aunts used to follow for the best  dried fruit cake ever. Apricot, Almond …

light recipe: glazed figs with mascarpone cream

I love fresh figs and will probably eat an entire basket of them any chance I get, so last night or early this morning, since I couldn’t sleep, I decided to search online for a recipe I wanted to try over the weekend and found it here. The funny thing is, around the bay area, we can find fresh figs at a local market pretty much the entire year, no matter if they are out of season. Anyway, check out the recipe and let me know what you think? Keep in mind if you have nut allergies, to avoid the walnuts. Ingredients Cream: 2 cups mascarpone 1/2 cup heavy cream 2 tablespoons icing sugar (confectioners’) Glazed Figs: 1/2 cup orange juice 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar 1/4 cup sugar 1/2 teaspoon orange zest 1 pint fresh figs, halved 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped Special equipment: an electric mixer Directions For the cream: In an electric mixer whip the mascarpone until smooth. Continue whipping and slowly add the cream in a steady stream. Add the sugar and whip for 3 minutes. For the …

french pick me up in san francisco

First rain of the season and I must say, it didn’t bother me a bit. It was almost sereal, because although the sun made an appearance through the clouds, it rained almost continuously throughout most of the day. I decided with the rain, I needed to sit in one of my favorite French Cafes for lunch and daydream the hour away.  As soon as I entered the cafe, I was seated at a round marble table near the window and offered a bottle of water and the best French bread and sweet butter on this side of the Atlantic.  While I looked over the menu to figure out what I wanted to order, I began to hear French conversation all around me, from locals and tourists alike. While I sat there smiling, the waiter asked what I was so happy about and all I could do is shake my head as if there was nothing to smile about. However, I couldn’t have asked for a better pick me up on a rainy Monday then to …

chasing french and italian countryside in napa

Over the weekend I needed to get away from the cold and the fog and find some sun. So what  better way to do that then to take a trip to Napa and emerse myself in a  mini replica French and Italian countryside escape, while taking in the sun. We got an early start because we wanted to stop off  for breakfast in Sausalito before the town was packed with tourists. We usually eat at my favorite breakfast place, Sausalito Bakery and Cafe  (I don’t care if it’s touristy spot) because of the ambiance, a great cup of coffee and a slice of blueberry and cottage cheese strudel made with filo dough. (It’s actually really delicious and much lighter than the typical strudel made with regular dough). While we sipped coffee we discussed our course of action for Napa, knowing very well we would end up at our usual favorite wineries. Finally or actually after forty five minutes of sipping coffee and watching the restaurants and shops open up and prepare for business, we head …

burlingame avenue, burlingame, ca: a road trip from san francisco

A quick escape from San Francisco “summer time” dreary weather is Burlingame, CA, about 20 or so miles south of the city. There are many ways of getting there,  by car, by train and by bus. The best day to be on Burlingame Avenue is Saturday after 10a.m., when all the locals, dressed in their casual attire, gather their babies, dogs and elderly parents and walk about the area just to have a family outing. Of course I  go to Burlingame Avenue in Burlingame once a month during the summer months,  and after having an extended breakfast early in the morning  at Crepevine or Stacks, I do some shopping throughout most of the day and then either eat an early dinner or have a light snack before I return to my foggy and cold city. This past weekend,  I discovered a really great eatery, called Urban Bistro, while I was walking towards Crepevine for a brunch get together with some friends. I called everyone and asked them to join me at Urban Bistro just to …

miette – a san francisco treat

It is becoming almost impossible to stay cheery and upbeat with the weather we are having in San Francisco (as usual) this Summer. Getting bundled up is really not my favorite part of our Summers here and because of it I am always looking for ways to escape the gray and the cold. Miette came to mind on friday as a pick me up, when I stepped out to lunch from my job. So  I walked over to the Ferry Building at the Market Street and treated myself to my favorite chocolate wafers (pictured above) with a cup of hot coco. Yes, hot coco in the middle of Summer. I must say, even if it was only for thirty minutes in the middle of the day, I felt really warm and fuzzy 🙂 inside. What I love is the fact I discovered they actually have a recipe book here and guess what, I am now a proud owner of a copy from Barnes and Nobles. So, while you are visiting our wonderful city by the …

recipe: panna cotta perfected

Yes I am going to start the week off with a recipe because I feel as if I need a pick me up and usually sensual – yes food can be sensual – dessert recipes will do the trick, that is only if I cannot travel to Europe at the particular time. Anyway, I found this recipe here and in my opinion it is one of the best Panna Cotta I have ever tasted, well, outside of my “late” chef cousin who used to make them for me. So here it goes and if you try it, please let me know how you liked it. One piece of advice, get creative with the toppings. Also, if you are on a strict diet or a healthy eating kick, this recipe is not one to follow. Panna Cotta Eight servings Adapted from Secrets From My Tuscan Kitchen by Judy Witts I love this dessert and the great thing about Panna Cotta is that it demands to be made in advance. You can make them up to two days …

for the love of cupcakes

What is the craze with cupcakes? I mean they have been around for years but just in the last 5years or so, every woman I can think of considers cupcakes for their get togethers more so than cakes. I suppose they are more fun, less fattening and perfectly sized for most anyone and any occasion – in America that is – just in case everyone else is scratching their heads with what I am stating here. Anyway, I won’t deny it, I love them too and often search for cupcake specialty stores most anywhere I go in the states. My favorite is Sprinkles here and although quiet pricy, they are the best I have ever had, especially on the first day – not so much second day and after. So in light of this subject matter, I have included photos of some of my favorite cupcake decor for your viewing pleasure. Also, please drop me a line with your favorite cupcake speciality store.