Filet of Sole Dieppoise

Filet of Sole Dieppoise

Visiting northern France is a pleasure, with many villages along the coast offering a variety of fresh seafood. The seaport of Dieppe, captured between high cliffs and the seashore was more of a resort in its heyday, but the fishermen still bring in a catch worthy of your attention, and the local cusine benefits greatly from this treat. Parisians would take the train here, then ferry over to England. The English used to come here to swim, now they have discovered warmer places like Spain… but that’s another story.

There has always been plenty of sole to catch in these waters, and one local offering is “Sole Dieppoise,” a tasty dish that also features another local favorite, mussels. Modern variations also feature shrimps and exotic mushrooms, but locals keep it simple with the sole and mussels swimming in a divine sauce. Here is my own variation of the classic seafood dish from Dieppe; easily made anywhere you can get some fresh filet of sole and mussels.

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Baguettes or French Bread

The classic bread is demystified. If you have the time, here is the secret recipe taught me by a friend. It is not truly authentic unless sourdough yeast is used, but here and there throughout the world, it is simpler and more expedient to use commercial baker’s yeast. I prefer the dried granulated stuff in a big bag, which is put in a sealed jar in the cooler after opening. Don’t rush this, unless you are making it for an audience. Even then, take some time to enjoy the experience. Pound that dough by hand!

Ingredients:

6 cups of sifted white flour
2 cups water
3 tablespoons yeast
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 egg white
1 tablespoon cold water

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Quiche Lorraine

Quiche became popular in the U.S. during the 1950’s. Consisting of mainly vegetarian ingredients, it acquired the “real men don’t eat quiche” label in the macho American society, only to blossom into widespread popularity during the later 20th century. Nowadays there are many kinds of quiche, from the original quiche Lorraine, to ones with all sorts of veggies including broccoli and mushrooms. Other ingredients popular in a quiche are ham and/or seafood (primarily shellfish). Serve a quiche at any meal, and almost anyone will enjoy it!

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Blue Cheese Onion Pie

Blue Cheese Onion Pie

Traditionally an onion pie would be made with crumbled bacon bits, and came from the Alsace region of France. My interpretation leaves out the bacon, and replaces that flavor with blue cheese. I prefer to use a bio, or organic cheese made in France. The quality of most ingredients in European foods is far superior to those in America, and you might consider using entirely organic ingredients to achieve the same flavor and satisfaction anywhere you are.

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