May 29, 2017

Claufoutis aux Cerises Recipe for When Life Gives You a Bowl of Cherries

Claufoutis aux Cerises Recipe for When Life Gives You a Bowl of Cherries

Spring starts early in the south of France. Nutmeg was shocked to learn that the cherries on the neighbours’ tree would be ready to eat by the middle of May!! Under perfect conditions, local BC cherries only start arriving in Calgary farmers markets in mid-July. Sure enough the white flowering trees quickly turned to producing the luscious red fruit, and all of a sudden the orchards were laden with produce. The problem with cherries is you can only eat so many before they start spoiling. The cherry is a stone fruit within the Prunus species, related to plums and apricots. As a fruit, the cherry has been consumed for millenniums, with references even in Roman times. There are numerous varieties of cherries globally. However, the most commonly known strains in North America are the wild cherry (or sweet cherry) and the sour cherry. The red pigment in cherries is called anthocyanin, and it has been shown to provide some pain relief and reduce inflammation. (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , ,

 
February 22, 2016

Sweet Memories in an Apricot Tart

Sweet Memories in an Apricot Tart

Apricots will always remind Nutmeg of her grandmother, Charlotte. Nutmeg never asked if her grandmother liked to cook, it was just assumed that she did as her Hungarian lineage prevailed in hearty meals and traditional sweets. It was not unusual for Charlotte to spend an entire day preparing for a meal. The group would gather around her formal table, set with family china, polished silverware and sparkling crystal to enjoy Charlotte’s paprika chicken, beef goulash, stuffed peppers, gnocchi and other classics. (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , , ,

 
May 13, 2013

Ancient Apricots

Ancient Apricots

Literally as old as the hills, the fruit of the apricot tree are confirmed to have been domesticated since the Bronze Age. Although, the exact origin of the tree is debated; there is evidence of consumption of the fruit in both China and India between 3-4,000 B.C. the apricot in dry format was certainly exchanged along Persian trade routes. the scientific name, is Prunus armeniaca (Armenian plum), likely as a result of the ubiquitous presence in Armenia since antiquity. The fruit was eventually introduced to the Greeks and then adopted by the Romans. (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , ,

 
August 13, 2012

Glorious Italian Gelato

Glorious Italian Gelato

Is it possible more flavour and less fat? Yes! Italian cuisine is known for its’ simplicity and high-quality ingredients. Gelato is one such example. The Italians have been perfecting this frozen desert since the days of the Medici family of Florence. In 1565, a Florentine chef, Bernardo Buontalenti, served his frozen concoction to Catherine de’Medici. Since that time, the popularity of the dessert and the wide variety of flavours has exploded. Today, gelato can be found all over Italy and many places around the globe. (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , ,

 
July 19, 2012

Aidan Larson Conjugating Irregular Verbs

Aidan Larson Conjugating Irregular Verbs

Don’t let your mother tell you that the Internet is a scary place! Nutmeg has met so many interesting people via Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest that she has decided to start a Guest Blog Thursdays, so they can share their stories. Volia: Aidan Larson is an American mom of three navigating her way through life in France and writing about it on her blog: Conjugating Irregular Verbs. She writes from her dining room table in the south of France in between motherhood, French lessons and perfecting her oeuf en croute. If you want to read more from Aidan she can be found on her blog site Conjugating Irregular Verbs (letters from my dining table in the south of France) or on Twitter @aidan_larson. (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , , ,

 
August 8, 2011

Provencal Cooking in the Var

Provencal Cooking in the Var

Nutmeg is a bit embarrassed to admit that after many months in France, they have barely explored all of Provence.  The departments within Provence are all beautiful and vastly different. The departments include Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Alpes-Maritimes, Bouches-du-Rhone, Var and Vaucluse. So much to visit! Clearly a break from their holiday was in order!!  Nutmeg booked two nights in a lovely chambre d’hotes (B&B) called Les Quatre Saisons near the village of le Castellet, in the Var.  Le Castellet is a medieval village dating from 1153. It is a fairly well preserved town on a hill, so there are magnificent views from the top.  The town buildings are highly picturesque. Les Quatre Saisons is easily accessible from the major regional centres, and it is a true oasis. The weather was smoking-hot, reaching 32C under cloudless skies. Patrice cool, calm and well practised in the kitchen. He and his partner Didier ran a small Parisian bistro for nine years and then a restaurant on the coast for a few more. The twosome are both originally from northern France, they are now fully integrated southerners.  They embrace the use of local, seasonal ingredients and where practical focus on organic (bio) products.  When Ginger and Nutmeg arrived peaches, apricots and lavender were all in season.  After a delicious breakfast with homemade jams, seasonal fruit compotes, fresh bread and hot coffee, they were ready for a cooking lesson. Patrice and Didier have created a delightful home and a welcoming resort for guests.  This pair has it figured out, each one plays their preferred role in the “ballet” of running a successful chambre d’hotes.  Didier takes care of the rooms, his attention to detail shows in the heavenly bed linens, private balconies, discrete breakfast tables and tasteful decor.  Patrice’s domain is la cuisine. The cooking lesson involved preparing all the courses for that night’s dinner. Following the cooking class, Nutmeg suggested it might be a marvellous idea to visit the beach and attempt to cool down a bit.  The coast is beautiful and not yet too crowded in June. The evening meal was excellent from start to finish. There is no way to choose a favourite dish but given the fact that peaches were in season Nutmeg would like to share this remarkably easy recipe for Tiramisu aux Peches. Print Tiramisu aux Peches Recipe type: Dessert Cuisine: French Prep time:  10 mins Cook time:  15 mins Total time:  25 mins Serves: 8   This desert is super easy, you can use what ever fruit is in season. Enjoy! Ingredients 12 Ripe Peaches, washed, pitted and cut in quarters 3 Large Eggs ¾ Cup White Sugar 1 Container (500ml) = 2 Cups Mascarpone 8 Large Lady Finger Biscuits, or equivalent 2 cups Mixed juice of peach, orange and a bit of thyme liqueur 1 Cup Honey Instructions In a heavy sauce pan cook the peaches and honey on the stove top Once the peaches start to ooze liquid, cover and lower the heat In total, cook for about 15 minutes until the peaches are soft and the skin can be easily removed Prepare the topping by separating the egg yolks from the whites With a mixed blend the whites until firm By hand in a separate bowl mix the egg yolks, sugar and mascarpone together until well blended Gently fold the egg whites into the above mixture In a bowl soak the biscuits in the juice and liqueur blend for 2-3 minutes Place the biscuits in the serving dishes (drain the juice) Top with the cooked peaches Finally the mascarpone egg mixture on the top Place in the fridge until ready to serve 3.2.2499   Ginger and Nutmeg had a lovely time exploring the Var.  The beaches, the hilltop towns, beautiful vineyards and most of all Patrice’s cooking!

Recipes & Travel:
, , , , , , ,

 
June 20, 2011

French Recipe Favourites

French Recipe Favourites

Nutmeg has learned a few things about technology in the last couple months including: It is a brilliant idea to keep back-up files Software version updates can cause problems The benefits of saving documents to a cloud Luckily, there are a few loyal readers including CardaMOM, who prints everything.  Nutmeg has rebuilt the recipe database on this blog over the last few weeks, and she has been able to recover 99% of the recipes.  The new format is much better for printing.  Rather than make you search back through old posts for the French recipes, some of them are captured below (click the links) and enjoy! (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , , , , , ,

 
September 27, 2010

All About Raw Food

All About Raw Food

Back in August, Nutmeg published a blog post on Nu-Roots Nutrition in Canmore.  In the past few weeks, she has had the pleasure of getting to know the three ladies involved a little better; Sam, Tori and Joanne.  These three ladies offer a winning business combination of holistic nutrition (individual and corporate) and a storefront where they sell fresh small batch quantities of gluten free, raw food. If that sounds strange or yucky, think again….  Nutmeg has tried the “Nutella” spread and it is too die for AND good for you.  The granola comes in two varieties a buckwheat and a cacao version both delicious.  There are all sorts of other great things including; decadent brownies.  Want to learn more?  The store is open Tuesday – Friday and they offer raw cooking classes about every two weeks.  Below is an article from their most recent newsletter and a really easy recipe.  BE TEMPTED! (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , ,

 
July 31, 2010

Energy Bars are the Answer When You Need a Boost

Energy Bars are the Answer When You Need a Boost

As you may have gathered, Ginger and Nutmeg are both reasonably athletic. Nutmeg might be a bit more dedicated, regardless Ginger will still beat her every time.  Nutmeg does not prescribe to commercial “power bars” on a regular basis although they are handy for endurance activities or outdoor sports, particularly if weather can be a factor. For longer endurance exercise, such as road riding, you do need a power boost (and may not even realize it). Choose energy bars with the right ingredients or better yet make your own.  The challenge is the array of meal replacement bar products are vast,  and include a range of questionable snacks, many of which are barely better than a good old chocolate bar.  Not to mention an expensive option.  Nutmeg has a recipe for a homemade version if you are so inclined (printable recipe below): (more…)

Recipes & Travel:
, , , ,

 
December 31, 2009

Quick Chocolate Dessert Great for Entertaining

Quick Chocolate Dessert Great for Entertaining

Nutmeg has tested this chocolate desert recently and confirms it is quick and easy to make.  Great for the holidays with seasonal ingredients (nuts and dried fruit) and Nutmeg is very happy to confirm it is nothing like traditional fruit cake. Print Chocolate Nut and Fruit Tart Recipe type: Dessert Prep time:  2 hours 15 mins Cook time:  12 mins Total time:  2 hours 27 mins Serves: 6-8   Try this quick chocolate dessert and you are bound to impress your friends and family. Enjoy! Ingredients 1 Pie crust, refrigerated ¼ Cup Raspberry preserves, or jam of choice ½ Cup Heavy whipping Cream 12 oz Bittersweet Chocolate Chips 1 Cup Assorted nuts (pecans, sliced almonds, pistachios and hazelnuts) toasted, chopped coarsely 1 Cup Assorted dried fruit (cherries, raisins, cranberries and blueberries) 1 Large pinch Kosher Salt ½ Cup Toffee bits, for garnish Instructions Preheat oven to 450F Pierce the crust with a fork Bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes Cool Spread preserves over the bottom of the crust Bring cream to a simmer in a heavy saucepan Reduce heat to low; add chocolate chips and stir until melted and smooth Remove from heat Stir in the nuts, fruit and salt Spread the chocolate mixture evenly in the crust Sprinkle toffee bits over the top Chill until set (about 2 hours) 3.2.2499  

Recipes & Travel:
, , ,

Page 1 of 212