Sunday, September 06, 2009

Paring down... to one blog

I can make this wordy, or I can make it to the point.

Since I have felt detached from this blog for months now, I think I'll be straightforward.

I've decided to stop writing Cuisine Quotidienne. The site will stay up, but -- at least for the coming year -- I'll be blogging only on La France Profonde. And I may work in some food-oriented posts there.

Thanks to those of you who commented here frequently, or even infrequently, and I hope to get individual comments out to some of you eventually!

Saturday, July 04, 2009

In honor of the 4th of July

I do not post to this blog anymore and, to tell you the truth, I have plans to "put it down" io the near future. But I don't want to do that without a certain amount of pomp and circumstance, and at the moment, I don't have enough time to develop an appropriate farewell to Cuisine Quotidienne, which I imagine will take me several posts. It will have to wait until I get to the USA in four days!

For now, here's a little clin d'oeil to the 4th of July. I happen to quite like hot dogs, and think they're a nice occasional school night meal -- as long as they're served with a salad or two, or some veggies. And pains spéciaux pour hot dogs have finally arrived in my region of France!

I know it's culinarily incorrect, but I was happy to find them at my local EcoMarché...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter -- and yes, I still do cook

I just downloaded some photos from a recent trip and, to my surprise, found some photos of food in the camera!

Just for your information -- I do still cook. I'm just not blogging about it and, if truth be told, I've been in something of a slump as far as creativity and trying new recipes go.

But this is the (school) year where I have really learned to appreciate everything I've already mastered about cooking in France: throwing together quiches, soups, salads, and all sorts of other simple fare without ever really looking at a recipe.

Anyway, I'm not sure where, if anywhere, this blog is going but I did want to "chime" in and wish a Happy Easter to those of you who celebrate it.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

On the back burner


With a month gone by since my last post, I'm making a formal decision to put Cuisine Quotidienne on the back burner.

Those of you who have followed this blog probably know that it has been something of a struggle. I have plenty of ideas for a blog about everyday French cooking -- in other words, this blog -- but the labor-intensive aspect of food blogging has definitely gotten the best of my good intentions.

I'll try to drop in here once a month or so, just to keep the place alive.

And remember, I do have two other Blogger blogs: La France Profonde, where I may end up posting a few food-oriented articles, as well as And So Forth, a catch-all blog which is becoming more important to me.

Until then -- bon appétit!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Bleh


I don't want to make any big pronouncements about the demise of Cuisine Quotidienne, but suffice to say that winter is taking its usual toll on me.

I think I may be taking a month or two off from posting here. Winter is by far my busiest time workwise, and with no vacation in sight -- no, I don't get the upcoming two weeks of vacances scolaires -- I think I'll just be keeping my head above water until March or maybe even April.

Take care all, and I promise I'll be back.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pantry Peek

I know there's a cooking blog out there somewhere that features peeks into different food bloggers' pantries. I keep waiting until at least part of my pantry looks really spiffy to send a post to it, but of course the "spiffy-looking pantry" part is never going to happen...

In the meantime, here is a small portion of my pantry. You can see quite a few French elements here, and a few American touches.

I'll be happy to take any questions.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The ABCs of Everyday French Cuisine 3: C for carottes


(Flickr photo courtesy of Maxime LeDuc)

Carrots are a reliable vegetable. They keep well, are easy to cut up and please everybody in my family. I virtually always have them on hand and, as in American cooking, they are one of the staple vegetables of everyday French cuisine.

When I was a student in Tours in the 1980s, we frequently ate at a restaurant that served plain, home-style French food. We had a food allowance and could just afford the three-course evening meal, which, if my memory serves me correctly, cost 5 francs. (Is this possible?) One of their recurring starters was carottes râpées, and my fellow students and I all felt these grated carrots with a simple vinaigrette were somehow extraordinary.

I suppose I have become blasé, but plain grated carrots with vinaigrette rather bore me now. I usually perk up the salad with another fruit or vegetable, especially apples and/or zucchini. Sometimes I add a lot of herbs, especially coriander when I have it, or make some fancy sauce with yogurt or orange juice. I'm not sure how French all of this is, but variety is the spice of cooking life. And speaking of spices, cumin is pretty delicious with grated carrots.

One supermarket item that saddens me is ready-made carottes râpées. They just seem like a very depressing thing to buy:


In France, raw carrots are generally eaten in this grated form. When I serve carrot sticks with a dip, whether to my family or friends, the former wolf them down and the latter consider the presentation original and exotic.

Carrots enter into many other French recipes, of course. They are a frequent ingredient in traditional French blended soup, and carottes Vichy, originally made with Vichy mineral water, are a well-known French classic.

Personally, I often toss carrots in with a roasted chicken, include them in about every mixed vegetable dish I make, and occasionally concoct something elegant from them, such as this carrot flan:


However, unlike many of my American expat friends, I have never attempted to make a carrot cake in my French kitchen. But I think if I wanted to get comments about "original" and "exotic" cooking, that would definitely beat carrot sticks!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

It's all over now

Oh my, the holidays were lovely.

I often spend a lot of time cooking over Christmas vacation, but this year I really took it easy -- for the entire week and a half I had off, including Christmas. So you won't be seeing a lot of fancy-dancy "look at all of these new recipes I tried on my vacation" photos here.

We enjoyed a simple but festive Christmas Eve meal, or réveillon du 24, featuring boudin blanc cooked with potatoes and sautéed apples.

We savored an even simpler late lunch on Christmas day. Before the meal, we nibbled on foie gras that was given to my husband by one of his clients:


Of course we didn't eat it right out of the jar, but by that time champagne was flowing and somehow I didn't get a good photo of the foie gras on its serving platter.

For the main course, I roasted a locally-raised chicken -- a turkey would have been a bit much for the three of us -- and served some lovely, wintery mix of root vegetables and chestnuts with it:

Cheese, of course, followed, then the traditional French bûche de Noël, which I always buy from local pastry shops. This year's flavor was chocolate-pear:

Tomorrow it's back to work, and the Christmas holidays will quickly fade into a distant memory -- except for the fact that we keep our (artificial) tree up until the end of January!

Wishing all of you the happiest of new years. Bonne année 2009!