Chocolate soup, nuts crumble

Let’s not be narrow-minded : a soup does not have to be eaten at the beginning of your meal, nor does it have to be a topic of quarrel between a mum and her children. Here is the glorious proof : when “Eat your soup !” is no longer a threat and does not need to be repeated twice.

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Gift roses : pistachio and rose Basboussa (semolina cake)

It takes all sorts to make a world. At a smaller scale, it also seems to hold true to make a couple. Take that pistachio and rose Basboussa for instance : no finger pointing but one of us just does not get just yet the beauty of this recipe. Given that it’s a recipe for 10 to 12 people, it’s a pretty good thing it does not go stale overnight because I end up eating the whole thing by myself and it takes me a couple of days.

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Wild Blackberry Jam

Come beginning of spring, I get antsy like a squirrel in front of its depleting nuts reserve : the count down to September starts as it is only then when I will be able to make a fresh batch of blackberry jam. You’ll think, why tease us with a recipe we won’t be able to make before another 5 to 6 months ? Well, because there is preliminary work to be done ! Finding your wild blackberry spots is the name of the game : you want them accessible enough not to get too many scratches in the process, but hidden enough not to be within everybody’s reach; sunny enough so that you can get beautiful ripe fruits, but not overexposed for they would get dry; also, make a mental note to pray for some rain, to get juicy fruits… Once nature played its part, you can play yours. This is how it goes :

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Pate à choux & éclairs

Key takeaway of this pastry class from yesterday : if your nerd in school, a nerd always you’ll be. Here I was scribbling notes on the side of the recipe sheet that was handed over to us, and asking all kinds of questions… imagine my joy when I realized I was heading home with homework : empty choux to fill with the pastry cream 🙂

But first things first, as a respectable nerd, I’m sharing my notes for those who skipped the class. Then I’ll submit myself to the hardest jury one can think of : mother-in-law and husband will assess my work…

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Gingerbread ou pain d’épices

If you are a purist, and you’re not famished, you will allow the dough to rest 3 weeks to 6 months before finalizing your gingerbread. This is how it is supposed to be traditionally prepared. If you’re stuck in a snow storm and hungry as it is my case today, you can also get it done in 1 hour.

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Grilled almonds : quick and easy

Have you heard of the chamallow test ? It’s designed to assess kid’s ability to resist an immediate temptation in pursue of a greater satisfaction but later on. Well, I can tell you my better half fails this test almost on a daily basis, when, after a long and grueling day at work, he comes home to wolf down a bag a industrial pretzel before he gets to taste that delicious dinner I made for him. And it’s bugging me. I feels almost cheated on by this pretzel bag. So in a very “adapt or die” move, I decided I will prepare nibbles, quick and easy, and he’s snacking before dinner will not be cheating anymore.

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Sweet potato cakes

Taste works in mysterious ways ! All my childhood and still now, I heard my mum wonder why I did not like beetroots despite their sweetness. I, personally, feel they taste like dirt… There are a few, but still some, ingredients that are on my blacklist. And looking at this list I wonder if I’m fit to live in the US because cinnamon and sweet potato had been blacklisted for some time already… See, I never was too big a fan of the sweetness of the sweet potatoes and their mashy texture. But to keep an open mind I kept trying and here is at last a recipe to make them to my taste !

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