Courgettes, zucchini for the Américains, are so versatile, easy to prepare and I think a vegetable eaten and enjoyed by almost everyone. It is a safe food to start introducing vegetables to babies and children generally prefer courgettes to peas. What’s not to like about courgettes. So, cheers to courgettes!
Pincée de fleur de sel:
- Add some cumin grains to the courgettes
- Spread some mustard on the base of the tart before adding the filling.
- Use puff pastry instead of the phylo.
- Replace the feta cheese with rounds of goats cheese and drizzle with honey.
Just as I think all the chicks are almost grown up, a hen shows up with a little new born chick fluttering around her. The buzzards are also informed by their secret sources that a newborn is availabe and they do take their chances. Unfortunately for them, there is nothing more fierce than a mother hen.
mother and chick
Danger in the sky
Why do Decembers ignite this uncontrollable desire for all things dessert? Just to have the hips show every inch of this desire flagrantly off in January.
It is a crisis. But in some crises the best thing to do is…have some dessert. Some apple tartlets. They are truly quick and easy and utterly delicious and very homey. They’re not fancy, rather rustic and no one will be offended if you pick one up by hand. They are meant to be enjoyed with a friend or someone you care about. And leave the plate with tartlets in the middle for a second helping. One won’t be enough. Oh, and leave one secretly for yourself for tonight, when all is quiet and asleep.
So the hips in January will be even rounder. But that is OK. At least it will give us something to talk and write about in January!
…ingredients for tarte fine aux pommes…
- Choose an apple with a bit of sourness like a Granny smith.
- The puff pastry can be replaced with another pastry of your choice.
- Other fruit like pears, figs, peaches, apricots can be used.
- It you find the top isn’t caramelized enough after baking, then sprinkle with a little brown sugar and caramelize quickly under a hot grill and keep your eye on it.
- You can make the size of the tartlets as big or small as you like or even a single big tart.
- Sage leaves are a good substitute for thyme.
- Try sprinkling a tiny bit of fleur de sel with vanilla over the top just before baking.
- Can be enjoyed as dessert with an accompanying scoop of ice cream or créme frâiche, or as a late afternoon snack with tea, a goûter, as we call it in France.
…joanne’s home in Tours…
My friend Joanne, allowed me into her home with my camera a while ago. She lives in the centre of Tours, where it takes a few minutes and you can serve up a fresh baguette and croissant for breakfast. With a basket and some walking shoes, you can browse the market just around the corner from her to have fresh veggies on the table at dinnertime. Just down the road from her lives a musician whose melancholic saxophone melodies vagabond down the quiet street. Life is tranquil and beautiful in her home. It reflects the stillness of her character, yet reveals the brilliant colours of her spirited and optimistic nature. Always trying to see the bright side, always ready for a new project, enthusiastic about life with a strong belief that every minute counts. She loves good food and it is just a pleasure inviting her over for a meal and seeing her obvious joy in appreciating what is put in front of her.
* astuce de grand-mére:
* Boil some vinegar on the stove for a few minutes to eliminate unpleasant kitchen odours.