French Friday

Fennel, Fetta and Pomegranate Salad

Fennel is a versatile vegetable used in many areas of cooking. Many famous French soups include fennel.

Here we have a crisp, colourful and flavoursome salad which is very inviting when you see it. The brightness of the pomegranate lights up this beautiful salad.

The ancient Romans used to chew fennel stalks believing that it would control obesity, but the modern day theory is that it is very good for heart health.

French Almond Nougat

Here we have a French almond nougat which is a lighter and chewier type of nougat. Although it’s called an “almond” nougat, it is a classic recipe which can have extra fruit, peel or other nuts added to it for variety.

This nougat is a recipe from Provence where they use honey to give it perfection, rather than add liquid glucose.

In theory this looks like a fairly easy thing to make, but it is important to get your temperatures right. Because the chemistry in the heating of the sugar and honey is important, invest in a candy thermometer.

Provencal Roasted Cauliflower with Herbs and Olives

Here we have a simple, but very tasty side dish to accompany any meal. This is very quick and easy to prepare, and is best served warm.

Strawberry Dressing on Fig, Strawberry and Blue Cheese Salad

Salad dressings or vinaigrettes traditionally consist of a mixture of oil, vinegar and a grainy mustard.

Additional herbs can be added, and the French often add fruit into the blend to enhance the flavours of the ingredients making up the salad.

This thick strawberry dressing enhances the flavours of all these ingredients.

Parsnip and Herb Gratin

Although the parsnip was not a popular vegetable to be used in French kitchens in years gone by, it has now become a widely used ingredient. Parsnips are readily found in markets around the country, and are quite expensive to buy. They are no longer regarded as food for pigs and cows. The parsnip is now treated with more respect, and a vegetable worthy of a place on the table.

White Bean Paté

This white bean paté is a tasty vegetarian alternative to the traditional liver paté. Dry white kidney beans can be boiled, or another option is to get them from a can. For this recipe I boiled dry beans for about an hour.

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