mardi 30 septembre 2008


I've only encountered these little red peppers in Italy.
They're sweet, crunchy and not spicy once you've taken all the seeds out.
The best way that i found to appreciate them is as a bitesize aperetif.
Rinse them, chop their tops off, deseed them, and quater them. You then make a filling based on cream cheese in which you add virtually any herb or spice... keep to one spice/herb at the time, as mixes tend to kill off the taste of the pepper.
Cream cheese mixes welll with mint / basil / parsley & garlic / lemon / honey & rosemary / cumin & corriander / cumin & orange zest & sultanas...
go for it !

Oh ! they have a sun dried version too that is quite HOT !
but once hydrated and mixed with three times it's quantity in dried tomato, black olives, 2 cloves of garlic, and some olive oil, you can either use it as pasta salsa or just spread it on warm toast.

lundi 29 septembre 2008

for kids... big and small

5 minutes to prepare this little wonder. the problem is that it smells so good when it come out of the oven that everything is devoured before you can take a picture of the finished product...
So you chop up bits of chicken that you marinate for at least an hour. The marinade being composed of 6 units of soya sauce, 2 units of sugar, 1 unit of honey (Acacia if you can because the taste is not as strong as others, yet it holds during the cooking, and a small unit of rice wine (or whisky), a chopped onion, a piece of gratted ginger and 2 squashed cloves of garlic.
Leave everything in the marinade and cook under the grill for as long as it takes.

vendredi 26 septembre 2008

At last

My favorite restaurant in Paris has re-opened.
Momoka, held by my friend Masayo, offers the best japanese food you can get.
Inventive, original, simple, delicate, refined, copious, and NOT expensive.
Above : crayfish tartar with an urchin & soya sauce topping.

mercredi 24 septembre 2008


Haven't posted anything in quite some time, but i keep forgeting to take a picture of what's been cooking. Anyway, for some reason , i thoght that it was a good idea to cook a chicken & mushroom pie last night... it was 10.30, and it was a good excuse to open a bottle of Chablis... the night was mine.
So here goes...
i chopped up 6 big mushrooms and fried them in a pan with a big dollop of butter and a hand full of chopped parsley. When the mushrooms have given all their water, add in a couple of chopped cloves of garlic.
> Stir.
It should smell good by now.
Throw in 4 chicken brests that have been cubed.
> Stir.
Pour in a very generous glass of white wine, salt & pepper, and let simmer.
Pendant ce temps, as they say over here, melt about 150 g of butter in a pan.
Add in 6 tablespoons of flour and mix until all the flour has equally absorbed the butter. Reduce the heat and progressively add in some milk whilst stirring all the time. The secret to the béchamel is the continuous stiring and the fact that you add the milk very slowly and in very small quantities.
So, you keep on stiring and adding theads of milk (be patient; a béchamel without lumps is so much nicer than a lumpy one)... don't forget to check on your chicken from time to time...
When you get a nice thick béchamel, you can add it to the chicken once all the liquid has gone.
> Stir
> Taste
> add some thyme perhaps
> let cool
> Switch on the oven to 180°C.
Line your baking tin with a layer of fluff pastry. Pour in the chicken & mushroom mix. Line the top with a second sheet of fluff pastry. Spread the yolk aver the top for the shiny effect and cook for a good 40 mins.
> Eat with whatever wine ther is left.

mardi 9 septembre 2008


... and it's just a starter.
The bruschetta in the middle was one of the most amazing things i have tasted in a long time... Yet again, so simple to do.
Lightly toast a slice of bread. Scrub a clove a of garlic on one side. Cover it with mushrooms that have been preserved in oil, add on a layer of Mozarella di Buffala. Grill. Eat.

vendredi 5 septembre 2008

marocan soup

i'm not sure what's happening to the weather, but it's suddenly getting cold. To think that a week ago i was basking in the south of France, sipping some cool white wine under a palm tree... Back in Paris for less than a week and it's autumn... it's supposed to be nice in paris in september... whatever happened to the indian summer ?
this is one for the cold... when it gets colder i'll post a more filling version. This one will do for now. It's perfect to nurse bad hangovers by the way...
chop into small bite size pieces 2 carrots, 2 turnips, 2 courgettes, 2 tomatos & a large onion.
heat some oil and start frying the onion. Add in the tomatos. When they get mushy, add a teaspoon of ginger, one of saffron and one of turmeric. give it all a twirl, then add the carrots and turnips, and let them cook for a few minutes. add an egg cup of water. When the water has evaporated, throw in the courgettes. stir, and cover with either a chicken or vegetable broth. cover. cook slowly for about 30 minutes. srinkle some chopped corriander leaves before serving. serve with harrissa.

tofu [2]

OK, this one is so easy NOBODY can screw this up. I mean NOBODY.
AND it's damn good (it's the only way i ever got kids to eat tofu) and damn healthy...
Get some firm Tofu. Dice it up.
Heat some oil. when it's hot, throw in the bean curd and stir fry for a few minutes. When it starts to colour, add in a crushed clove of garlic. Keep the whole thing moving, and pour in some soya sauce... about an egg cup full will do. Fry for an extra couple of minutes and throw in some chopped corriander leaves.

OH ! and if anybody manages to fluff this up, send me a picture & posting address and i'll send you a Mars bar in return !

jeudi 4 septembre 2008


I know that i've been bragging a lot about italian foood and italy in general, but over the past few months, there is one motto i try to keep to which is : THE SIMPLER, THE BETTER.
Life can get so damn complicated sometimes - for all the unnecessary reasons - that is is really worth while wasting time in finding easy solution the hard way and picking up at the same time a whole batch of stomach ulcers ?
So, yes, i say FUCK it all.
Italians are lucky beacause their products are so good, so they don't need tons of spices, additives, taste enhancers, bits & pieces & sauces to make things taste good...
From that, i can only deduce the fact that if a product is good, the dish will be hard to screw up.
Respect the seasons, and the product will taste good.
A tomato needs the sun, like a chicken needs space...
So keep it simple. Let the product do the "work"...

Chop some tomatoes, add some chopped basil and pour in some olive oil.

Crunch some salt and pepper.