To make up a café gourmand, little verrines (small glasses) of fruit balance the sweeter elements, such as macarons and calissons. The coffee itself is a coffee icecream to allow a seasonal change. There is no addition of sugar to the fruit so it is guilt-free if you are dieting, although bear in mind that there is a little syrup in the elderflower cordial.
2 ripe mangoes
4 ripe pears
Elderflower cordial, home-made
A few fresh mint leaves to decorate
1. Peel and quarter the pears, place in a saucepan containing the elderflower cordial (see recipe of 5 July 2014), and stew gently for 5 minutes. Let the fruit cool off and dice into small cubes. Reserve.
2. Peel and cut the mangoes and whizz.
3. Fill the verrines with the mango coulis, refrigerate and add the pears just before serving. Decorate with mint leaves.
tapenade post of 30 March 2016)
Looking for a slightly different way to cook chicken? Then try it with tapenade. ( see
It won’t take long to prepare or cook and will bring the flavours of the Mediterranean to you.
Moreover, as it is cooked in steam, it is limiting the fat content to a minimum. Good news for the waistline!
If you wish to serve it with sauce, use a light Béchamel
as I did on this occasion.
2 chicken fillets
Black olive tapenade
Light Béchamel sauce ( white sauce)
1. Put the fillets on a plate and spread the tapenade over each fillet.
2. Roll tightly and tie each fillet with cotton to form a roll.
3. Cook in a pressure cooker for 10 minutes.
4. Check that the meat is well cooked, remove the cotton, cut thick slices and serve immediately. A salad or steamed new potatoes go well with this dish. And a glass of Chablis !
This is a cool salad, perfect on a breezy Spring lunch. Prepared in a few minutes, it will take even less time to eat it.
1 ripe papaya, peeled and diced
2 small cooked beetroots, diced
1 courgette, peeled and cut into fine ribbons
a little sunflower oil
1 teaspoon capers
4 cocktail gherkins, finely sliced
2 tablespoon vinaigrette
a few basil leaves to decorate
salt and pepper
- Heat the oil in a wok and toss the courgette ribbons for a few minutes. Reserve.
- Line the bottom of sundae glasses with the beetroot dice, season.
- Add the papaya dice, the courgette ribbons, the gherkins and capers, season , drizzle with the vinaigrette and decorate with basil leaves.
Tip: To give the vinaigrette an extra lift, I use spicy olive oil in which small chilli are marinating, Maille mustard with seeds and red wine vinegar infused with shallots.
Lent has only started but the need to provide a dessert from time to time is still felt. Since there were some little raspberry heart-shaped jellies left over, this gave me the idea to use them. The alternative was, of course, to eat them promptly. Will-power ensured a little decoration for the ice-cream instead.
2 generous scoops of Rum and Raisin ice-cream
10 little heart-shaped jellies
- Slice the banana and line an ice-cream dish. Cover with the ice-cream and decorate with more slices of banana and the little jellies.
Tip: If you are not observing Lent, a small glass of Sauternes will go nicely with this dessert.
A fan to appeal to your eyes before your tastebuds. A different way to present aubergines, which is easy and quick. This can be a good accompaniment to meats or fish. It can be eaten on its own with a slice of warm country bread.
2 medium-sized aubergines
1 small tomato, sliced
2 slices of Mozarella
a pinch of Origano
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
- Remove the stalks and slice each aubergine fairly thinly as it will need to be tender when cooked, making sure that approximately 1cm remain intact at the bottom.
- Put each aubergine on a tray in a pre-heated oven at 200C and open the slices gently, sprinkling a little salt and pepper and Origano in the heart and placing a tomato slice near the top. Drizzle with olive oil. Cook for 15 minutes, take out of the oven to add the Mozarella and cook for a further 2 minutes.
- Serve immediately.
Bon Appétit !