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This little guy has been hiding out on my blog for a little while now, so time to give you guys some directions to it!  I baked these soufflés as part of my tour de cook-along … and I must say they were a highlight.  A little soufflé never fails to delight!

I love soufflé!  It is delicious, barely qualifies as calories (it is obviously mostly just air!) and feels wickedly indulgent.  It is also dead easy to make.  I know, I know.  I can hear you already disagreeing and sounding dubious, but I challenge each and every one of you to give it a go.

This one pictured here I served to my 6 year old daughter with a side dish of ice cream as a rather decadent dessert following her dinner of the more standard spaghetti bolognaise… ‘Wow mum’, she said.  ‘Just wow! It looks like a fancy restaurant chocolate pudding!’

Yes, it does and you can have it too, just follow the simple recipe here.

Cheers

Madelyn

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What have I been up to?

So, here we are at Stage 10 and I have only brought you one recipe! What have I been doing?

Well, I have been learning to make cheese!  I have embraced my inner fromagère to take some time out and learn to make brie cheese, fresh ricotta and goats cheese.  While they were all interesting, and surprisingly simple to make it the brie that has captured my heart…

Over the weekend I was lucky enough to attend a cheese making course run by the lovely Tamara at Boatshed Cheese on the picturesque Mornington Peninsula. Tamara is one multi-talented lady and has worked extensively in France, including time spent as an affineur – the cellar master in charge of loving, caring for and refining the cheese as it matures.  When Tamara talked us through this experience, I was thinking to myself ‘those crazy French people, of course there is someone whose job it is to sit with the cheese for weeks on end …’

… Yet, here I am.  With Tamara’s expert guidance I have found myself as an affineur to my very own little cheese baby.  We are four days in and I am totally smitten with this little round of ripening curd.  I have caught myself talking to it, I’ve considered leaving the radio on for it while I go to work so it does not get lonely, and I spend minutes on end just looking at it as it presumably ‘does stuff’ that I cannot see (but in which I have total faith will yield something delicious!)

Already I have imbued it with its own personality.  My brie is a ‘Mister’ cheese and he is a fairly complex fellow.  Often he looks like he is just doing nothing, but day by day subtle differences are occurring and his visage is almost imperceptibly evolving.   I get the feeling he is a pretty deep kind of guy, but only time will tell.

Cheese Collage 2

So, as I said we are four days in.  Tamara tells me that I am going to nurture this little guy for the next three to four weeks.  Turning him, talking to him, and making sure he doesn’t catch and grow anything undesirable.  I think I may also wash him as well.  I do love a nice washed rind cheese and as fate would have it, my husband does not (more cheese for me!) although I feel a little guilty at keeping all the cheesy goodness for me.  Oh well, I have a few more days to decide before I need to start washing him in alcohol… I just need to decide what type of alcohol I will use if I do it.  Feel free to hit me up with your suggestions.

Stay tuned over the next few weeks to see how my cheese journey pans out and if you are local, check out Tamara’s one day Bread and Cheese Making  course at www.boatshedcheese.com.au.   It is a lovely reminder of how simple (and much more enjoyable) the simple things really are.

Cheers

Madelyn

Well, we are off to a controversial start … best get some perspective with a slice of cake!

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Hilda’s Butterkuchen

Here we go – the first recipe for this year’s Tour de France Cook Along!  Representing Germany and our start point a few days ago for the 2017 Tour de France, I bring you Butterkuchen.

I baked this a few days ago whilst I was in Mount Hotham, spending a skiing weekend with friends and family.

This traditional German tray bake was often baked by my brother-in-law’s mother, Hilda and was a firm family favourite.  It has been a few years now since Hilda passed away, but this weekend we all enjoyed a little reminder of the love she had for her family and revived a culinary tradition by baking this Butterkuchen in her ski lodge with her grandchildren.

Click on the link to find the recipe here, then settle back and tune into the controversy that is erupting around the Tour in Stage 5 ….

Cheers

Madelyn

Saddle Up with Musette for the Tour de France 2017…

Okay, so I think those of you following this blog may have noticed that I have struggled a little in recent years to complete the challenge of cooking along with the 21 days of the world’s premier cycling road race.

As some background for you, I started this blog a few years ago now in 2013 when I was spending my time at home with a young family.  For the last three years I have been back in the full-time workforce, making it a little harder at the end of the day to whip up a storm cooking fabulous French food.  My problem is though that I really enjoy it.  People I meet ask me about it, friends anticipate the kick off, and my husband goes into training for his taste testing duties… what am I to do?

This year I have decided to take a more relaxed approach.  Instead of cooking daily, I will aim to bring you a couple of recipes each week that speak to my heart (and ideally come from the regions visited by the Tour).  For 2017, I am particularly looking forward to bringing you a recipe for the quite poetically named ‘Crying lamb’ from the Alps regionand from Germany (where we kick off this year) a recipe for Butterkuchen. 

I will be commencing my cooking for this years Tour from the heights of Mount Hotham in Victoria, Australia where I will be visiting the ski slopes with friends along with my sister and brother-in-law’s family.  My brother-in-law’s mother, Hilda, would traditionally bake Butterkuchen for all our family gatherings, she was known for it, loved for it and it is one of the many things my nieces miss about her now that she is gone.  I think it is only fitting that I choose this recipe, based on a scone dough  with a buttery almond topping, to represent Germany as I kick off the Tour de France Cook Along for 2017 and share time in Hilda’s ski lodge with the family she loved…

Stay tuned – we kick off on the 2nd July!

Madelyn

And we are back …

Welcome to the 2016 Edition of Musette du Jour!

Yes, once again I am cooking alongside the Tour de France however this time for something different, I am cooking in spirit of Mireille Guiliano, author of French Women Don’t Get Fat.

FWDGF hit our shelves in 2005 and presented us with an inspiring view on the French paradox of eating for pleasure without blowing your waistline. I am intrigued to try out Mireille’s philosophy…

But! Before you worry that this will be a diet version of Musette, do not despair.  My first recipe for Stage 1 is drawn from Mireille’s FWDGF Cookbook (which I can highly recommend) and it suitably addresses my deepest darkest fear …  how you can you eat for pelasure without eating chocolate?!

You can check out the first two recipes here:

IMG_1347Classic Chocolate Mousse

 

 

 

IMG_1377Soupe au Pistou – Fresh Vegetable Soup

 

 

 

See you on the road to Paris!

Madelyn

 

Kouign Amann

Kouign amann... otherwise known as delicious!

Kouign amann… otherwise known as delicious!

Okay, so I am running a bit behind this race – I’ve been dropped by the peloton but as we head into the mountains perhaps I’ll be able to make up some ground … maybe.

Anyway, tonight I am back tracking to Stage 8 in Renne with a traditional treat from the bakers of Brittany, the Kouign Amann.  Yep – I tried to make a laminated pastry (like a croissant) and I think I succeeded.  They are flakey and taste delicious.  So now you know, if I can do it, so can you! Click the link, check out the recipe and have a go yourself!

Fondant aux Pommes Vanilées (Melting Apple Custard)

Melting Apple Custard

Melting Apple Custard

Tonight, we are showcasing the best of Normandy with an authentic French dessert made from Apples, Calvados, butter, cream and eggs.  It is an absolutely delicious dessert that reminds me how the French enjoy a little of everything with an easy notion of restraint.  This is a fabulous dessert, easy to make, delicious to eat, but devastatingly rich. Go easy, enjoy a little and love it a lot!