.....you have probably guessed just by looking at the photo.
Yes I forgot to put the clock back last night before going to bed hence French Boyfriend could not understand WHY the boulangerie was not open at 6h30 this morning. The reason being, it was only 5h30......enough said.
We managed to get a little treasure hunting and I will show you what I found tomorrow.
..amicalement from a still chilly SW France, Leeann x
You will need: For lining the soufflé dish 20g unsalted butter,softened 20g dried, fine breadcrumbs For the soufflé base: 50g unsalted butter 50g plain flour 450ml whole milk, warmed 160g Comté cheese, grated 1 tsp Dijon mustard 3 medium egg yolks 2 pinches of sea salt, or to taste 2 pinches of white pepper, or to taste For the soufflé mix: 7 medium egg whites 14 drops of lemon juice To finish the soufflé: 20g Comté cheese, finely grated
For the sauce: 150ml double cream 70g Comté cheese, grated 4 turns of freshly ground white pepper 1 tbsp kirsch (optional)
Method: 1.Using a pastry brush, grease the dish with a thin, even layer of softened butter, then coat with the breadcrumbs, shaking out the excess; put the dish to one side. 2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4 and place a baking tray on the middle shelf to heat up. To prepare the soufflé base in a small saucepan over a medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour, whisk until smooth and cook to a nutty blond roux. 3. Lower the heat, then gradually add the warm milk, little by little, whisking to keep the consistency smooth. Add the cheese and mustard and continue to cook, stirring from time to time, for three to five minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little. Add the egg yolks and stir until the mixture is silky and smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste and keep warm. 4. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites with the lemon juice to medium peaks. Transfer the warm soufflé base to a large bowl and briefly whisk in one third of the whipped egg whites to lighten the base. Then carefully fold in the remaining egg whites with a spatula or large metal spoon, delicately cutting and lifting the mixture to ensure minimum loss of volume and lightness. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Pour the soufflé mixture into the prepared dish, to three-quarters full. 5. Slide the dish onto the hot baking tray and bake in the oven for twenty minutes. Meanwhile, make your cheese sauce. While the soufflé is cooking, bring the cream to the boil and add the cheese and pepper, stirring continuously. Once the cheese has melted, remove from the heat and taste for seasoning. A dash of kirsch would not go amiss. Pour the sauce into a warm sauceboat.
6. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the surface of the soufflé and bake for a further five minutes. Serve immediately, placing the soufflé and sauce in the middle of the table so everyone can help themselves.
There is a strange serenity at chez moi this afternoon, which is a rather nice feeling after a busy morning of packing and getting orders off to the post office along with some customers calling at Fabulously French who even wanted an item gift wrapped for Christmas and I must say it looked very pretty.....just wish that I had taken a photo but will try and replicate for you when I get a spare minute as I am still photographing stock for Fab French.
The serenity appears to be comong from the fabulous late 18th century religous wall hanging that you see above, it comtains an extraordinary hand carved bust of Jesus.
I have 2 but one just keep one should the serenity continue as it really is not normal and I am finding it rather soothing......
The linen is rustic and very heavy - the size of the sheet is 88" by 136" (224 x 345 cms) and the sheet weighs an amazing 2.380kgs (5.24lbs)!
It has a stunning red cross stitch monogram. Each of the initials measures approximately 8 tall by 6" '( 20x 15 cms)wide..
The sheet is a off white colour.
It is getting harder and harder to find quality linens such as these and this one is a stunner. It could be used in so many ways. Its weight and quality make if suitable for upholstery. It would make a superb rustic bedcover.
This sheet is in amazing condition for its age, which will be the latter part of the 18th century or early 19th century. Don't miss this one, there are very few like it!
Back to the photographing of the other tresors I must go.....
Let's just say that my day started on a bit of a rough note....alarm went off very early this morning as there was a vide grenier taking place not far from us. French boyfriend made the coffee and said that he would serve me by toast and coffee in bed.....I said no but he insisted.......end result, a piece of toast laden with confiture de cerise which I managed to spill on antique white sheet, one of my favourites with a large monogramme.
I think that it is safe to say that a sleepy me, cherry jam and extra white sheet are not a good combination.
We set off bound for vide grenier, rain started to fall at first gently and got heavier. News flash on the radio saying that Lourdes had been flooded at all hotels evacuated and more rain was expected so it was not a good sign.
Hence we arrived at first vide grenier with not a lot of vendors in sight so made a quick tour and headed to the next vide grenier.
Paseed through the fabulous colourful village of Damazan, bound for Buzet; a region known for its wine.
Managed to find a few goodies which I will reveal tomorrow after I have finished washing/ironing sheets.....
200g good dark chocolate 200g unsalted butter 200g sugar 5 medium eggs 1 level tbsp plain flour
1. Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
2. Melt the chocolate with the butter. It’s fine to do this in a microwave, but using a bain marie (a bowl over a pan of simmering water) is good, too. Just don’t do it on direct heat.
3. Let the mixture cool a little, then add the sugar and stir thoroughly.
4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, but without beating too much air into the mix. Fold in the flour.
5. Turn into a sandwich tin or a silicone baking mould (22cm) and cook for around 22 minutes. It should be wobbly in the middle when you take it out.
6. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely before turning out the cake.
7. Let it rest in a cool place, covered with foil.
8. Slice and serve with crème fraîche.
Tip: Don’t scrimp on the quality of the chocolate you use, but don’t be tempted to go too dark – around 65% cocoa is good. The most important thing is to try to make this cake the day before, but it’s not a disaster if it’s ready the morning of your dinner.
Last week I sold the chandelier that was hanging in the centre of my wee boutique, complete with fabulous lamp shades that took me months to find.
I now have hung another chandelier in it's place but think that it would look better with lamp shades and I am on a mission to find some but it is proving most difficult to find some that a) I like the look of and b) are the correct size, as most that I have found are larger that I need.
Hence when I saw this photo, I thought that it maybe the solution to my problem......I love it.
There is some thing about toile de jouy that is ever lasting, maybe it is the romance in the scences that it depicts, conjuring up images of a simpler life, with wonderfully detailed often dream like designs. Whether a piece of worn 18th century toile de jouy or a modern day design, I love them all. I partuculary love the red designs and think that a touch of red makes a world of difference on a grey winter's day.
The cushion, that you see above, is part of our new stock at Fabulously French and this particular design depicts Diane the huntress.
We also have a pair of curtains in the same fabric which would look equally as good when used as window coverings or as a ciel de lit/bed crown.
Whilst on pinterest last night, I found this fabulous photo of a bathroom decorated with wallpaper in the same design.....
A croque-madame is a variation on the croque-monsieur, a French twist on grilled ham and cheese sandwich.Made with crème fraiche rather than béchamel, this classic variation of croque monsieur is delicious and super quick to make.
Serves: 2 Preparation time: 10 minutes Cooking time: 8 minutes You will need
4 slices of soft white Pain de Champagne bread or white toast bread
2 tsp butter
1 tsp Dijon mustard
4 tbsp crème fraiche
100g grated Gruyère cheese
2 slices of good quality carved ham from a deli or deli counter (from the bone)
4 tbsp vegetable oil
2 large eggs
Method 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 5 2.
Spread the butter on both sides of the bread, then spread one side with
Dijon mustard. Spread on one tablespoon of crème fraiche, sprinkle on
half the grated cheese and lay on the slice of ham and sandwich
together. Spread the top layer of the sandwiches with the rest of the
crème fraiche, then sprinkle with the rest of the cheese. 3. Place the sandwich on a baking sheet and bake for six to seven minutes until the cheese has melted and gone gooey on top.
While the sandwiches are baking, heat the oil in a frying pan and fry
the egg for one to two minutes, basting the yolk with the hot oil as it
cooks. Drain on kitchen paper and serve immediately on top of the
Bonjour mes amies, A busy morning so please excuse the lateness of this post. As promised in yesterday's post I am going to show you what I found on Sunday, there was not a lot of tresaure to be had but I was happy with my finds......
The first was something that French Boyfriend actually found first and was trying to call me when I arrived on the scene. Silly me in the sleepy state that I was in on a rainy morning at 7am, thinking I would rather be snuggled up in bed, forgot to turn my mobile on hence FBF was not impressed when I finally appeared as he had been trying to call me and in the meantime, this particular stand was crawling with antique dealers.
Fortunately? FBF had managed to charm the seller and get her to hold them for me as we have bought from this particular antique dealer in the past.
Here are some photos of OUR first treasure, a fabulous vintage butterfly collection...
A closeup of one of the beautiful specimens....
They really are stunning and each is beautiful in it's own right.
They are housed in a special box from Deyrolle, the shop in Paris famous for its naturalised animals.
Some new arrivals at Deyrolle......
My other find was two louis style chairs, which I plan to paint and then find someone to help recover them, so if anyone is good at this, please drop me a line.
Here is a close up of one of the chairs, both are identical....
Unfortunately these were my only finds and you can imagine me carrying a chair and the butterflies in the pouring rain a good kilometre, complete with umbrella so that the chair did not get wet! FBF kindly carried the other along with a large painting that he found, hence he was muttering some unkind French words, along with why did I not buy small things like most people..... Back to the ironing I must go.....a woman's work is never done.
à demain mes belles, Leeann x
p.s. the butterfly collection is for sale but collection is preferred due to the fragile nature of the item.
Yesterday we woke to a drizzly morning but decided that it was ONLY drizzle and it would not deter us from going to a local vide grenier.
The trouble was, the fine drizzle turned into pouring rain and unfortunately for us the vide grenier was being held in a paddock and my new leather boots were in a sorry state when we arrived back at chez nous.
Hence I am looking for a pair of boots to go treasure hunting in and think these will do the trick......
It is fig season here in SW France and everywhere you look are luscious fig trees laden with lots of lovely fruit. This is a favourite recipe as it is trés simple and the end result trés delicieux!
500g block puff pastry plain flour , for dusting 200g golden caster sugar 80g butter 4 star anise 10-12 figs, halved
Roll out the puff pastry on a floured surface to about 20p thickness. Put a round plate - about 12cm - on top and cut round it with a sharp knife to make 4 pastry circles. Sprinkle the circles with a little of the sugar and put them into the fridge.
Heat the oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Put the remaining sugar and butter in a pan. Bring to the boil slowly, but do not stir it. When it begins to go a dark amber colour, add the star anise and cook for 1 minute more, then take from the heat and pour into the bottom of 4 blini pans, approx 12cm wide, or 4 small tart tins without loose bases. Make sure there is 1 star anise in each. Put the figs in with the stem pointing towards the centre to make a wheel pattern. Put the pastry lid on the top and tuck the pastry in as though you were tucking in some sheets. Put on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden, puffed and cooked through.
Take out of the oven and leave for a couple of minutes then turn onto warm plates. Serve with crème fraîche or ice cream.
We are lucky enough in Eymet to have the lovely Julian, who serves the best coffee along with yummy Italian icecream all a hop, skip and a jump from Maison No.20. What did we do before you started this fabulous business Julian?
I think that his wonderfully restored camionette is now one of the most photographed objects in Eymet......
So now you all know where to come if you want great cafe and yummy icecream, note French boyfriend likes his icecream with hot coffee poured on top.....think this is a Frenchy thing!