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Showing posts from March, 2017

French Food Friday - Gordon Ramsay's Lemon & Poppyseed Madeleines

This week's recipe comes from one of my favourite non-French chefs: the fabulous and often controversial Gordon Ramsay.

Gordon Ramsay's Lemon & Poppyseed Madeleines Ingredients: 3 medium eggs80g caster sugar1 tbsp honey80g plain flour – plus extra for dusting40g ground almonds75g unsalted butter , melted, plus extra for the tin 1 tbsp poppy seeds Rind of one lemon  zested 
Method Use either an electric beater or a whisk to beat the eggs, sugar, and honey  together in a bowl until the mixture is pale and thick enough to leave a ribbon trail. Sift the flour, baking powder and spices into another bowl. Gradually fold into the whisked eggs until evenly incorporated.Stir in the poppy seeds and the lemon zest.  Slowly slip the cooled butter down the side of the bowl and fold in very gently and carefully. Cover and set aside.To bake the Madeleines, heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Generously butter, then flour, the Madeleines or bun tins. Spoon the batter into the tins and bak…

changing the clocks

On Sunday the clocks went forward which meant that we lost an hours sleep.

End result when we arrived at the first vide-grenier of the day, there was not a lot of action as most of the would be sellers were just getting out of bed.

Despite this fact, we found a few tresors, some of which have already been added to the shop.

This Louis XVI style frame caught my eye and the fact that it contained a photo of an adorable baby is a plus.

It is now Tuesday morning and all of the clocks have been changed in the house.  They will stay untouched until October when we change them this really neccessary I ask myself?

très bon semaine à tous, Leeann

French Food Friday....4 hour baguette

recipe and photo from here
Bonjour from a showery SW France,

This week the weather has been mixed; sunshine one day and showers the next...Spring has well and truly arrived.

Last weekend I discovered this recipe and I decided to give it a try. I was impressed with the results and yesterday gave it a 2nd attempt. I did not have any plain bread flour so I used multi cereal and I am happy with the result.

I think that the secret is in the flour so make sure that you use the best bread flour that you can find.

After my first attempt, I found a French blog that mentioned a way to speed the rising process up. She heats the oven to around 30 degrees and leaves the baguettes to rise for around 30 minutes.

I must admit that I have used this method myself when making hot across buns as it is often hard to find a warm place if the sun is not shining.

Makes 3 baguettes 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) tap water, heated to 115° F 1 teaspoon (1/8 ounce) active dry…

Who needs a watch?

When I lived in Istanbul I loved the cry of the mosques. They sound so exotic and for me, they were a reminder that I was  living in a fabulous foreign country.

Here in France we have the church bells which I sometimes take for granted. Normally I am up before the first chimes of the day but this morning I had a lie in. As I laid in bed I though to myself, I wonger what time it is? A couple of minutes later, the church bells started, two,  three, four, five; six, seven, eight and there they stopped.

Then they start ringing loudly and continuously for a few minutes as to to say it's time to get going!

The bells are the voice of the community.  They talk to us.

The bells talk about death, birth, weddings, baptisms, Easter, Christmas, funerals and special alerts.   They call us to wake, to pray, to work, to arms, to feast and, in times of crisis, to come together. Above all, bells are the sound of freedom and peace as in World War II they hung silently until the day th…

Friday flowers

This week has been a week filled with lots of lovely sunshine.

We even had a pique-nique lunch mid week which was just fabulous. 

Spotted these lovely daffodils in the park where we were having our pique-nique and I just had to take a photo.

Vive la pique-nique! The French love them and I must admit that  I feel the same way.

bonne fin de semaine à tous, Leeann

it's that time of the year

It's that time of the year when the magnificent magnolia bursts into bloom. A truly magical sight and reminds me of the magnolia tree that my nana had in her garden.

Spring is here and we are loving every minute....

à demain, Leeann x

French Food Friday Chocolate Madeleines

recipe and photo from here Continuing with the chocolate theme, I think that some chcolate madeleines are on the cards this weekend.  This is one of the best recipes that I have come across but  you need to chill this recipe overnight but they are well worth the wait as the result is a plump and moist petit cake. Chocolate Madeleines

Author: Lemons and Anchovies

Ingredients ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon (70 grams) all-purpose flour3½ tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder½ teaspoon double-acting baking powder⅓ cup plus two tablespoons (90 grams) sugarPinch of saltGrated zest of ¼ lemon (optional)2 large eggs, room temperature6½ tablespoons (3¼ ounces; 100 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
Sift together the flour, cocoa and baking powder and set aside. If using the lemon zest, combine the sugar, salt and lemon zest in another bowl and rub the ingredients together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist, grainy and aromatic.Using a whisk, beat the eggs with the lem…

Friand update

Since Friday I have made two batches of the jaffa friands which have been a hit with guests and French Boyfriend tells me they are his favourite. 

I have been trying to explain to him what jaffa sweets are but he does not really get it hence I may have to try and order some from Australia...

très bonne semaine à tous, Leeann x

French food Friday - Jaffa friands

recipe and photo from here

This week  everything that I have made has chocolate in it. Continuing with this theme, I am going to make some friands as I have a lot of eggs on hand. 

I love friands as they they have a fabulous texture which is due to the ground almonds and egg whites. It is an Australian recipe and I have Australia on my mind today as I have a bouquet of mimosa in my hall which smells heavenly.

Jaffa friands Ingredients
1 1/2 cups icing sugar mixture 1/4 cup cocoa powder 1 cup almond meal (ground almonds) 1/2 cup plain flour 1 tablespoon finely grated orange rind 6 egg whites, lightly whisked 185g butter, melted, cooled Icing sugar mixture, to serve Method Step 1 Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan-forced. Grease a 12-hole, 1/2 cup-capacity friand pan. Step 2 Sift icing sugar and cocoa into a bowl. Add almond meal, flour and orange rind. Stir to combine. Make a well in centre. Add egg whites and butter. Stir to combine.��������…

fabulously chic

Bonjour from a sunny SW France,

We have sunshine and 20 degrees forecast for tomorrow followed by a weekend of rain so I plan to make the most of the sunshine tomorrow.

I have just added a set of fabulous monogrammed napkins to the shop and thought it was worth letting you know as I have sold all of the monogrammed napkins that I had listed on the shop.

There is 6 of them and they are in excellent condition as they have spent most of their life sitting in an armoire in a local chateau. 

 They really are stunning and make a table look that extra bit special.

In the photo below you can see just how beautiful the linen is and  the detail around the border is amazing yet not too fussy, simpe but chic.

You can read more about them here.

I am off to prepare dinner....simple comes to mind.

à demain, Leeann x

a new month....

Wishing you all a happy March.  We are looking forward to the  arrival of Spring as it has been a long winter. 
I think spending a month in New Zealand last year spoiled us but the worst of the cold weather is now hopefully behind us and we can look forward to warm days with lots of lovely Spring flowers everywhere.

à très bientot, Leeann x