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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Salmon and Pilaf

Salmon with Basil Tapenade and Lemon Barley Pilaf  7/27/12
French Fridays with Dorie continued…

The last two recipes for this month were a natural together so I prepared them for a single meal.  I must say I like the tapenade with the salmon much better than I did for the recipe with lentils a couple of months ago!  I made the tapenade with kalamata olives instead of the cured as I always seem to have the kalamata in the pantry.  Searing the salmon in a grill pan helped to cook off the white protein that inevitably comes out of the fish if it’s broiled or baked alone.  
Instead of barley for the pilaf I used basmati rice.  It was a delicious substitute.  The fresh lemon zest along with the peppers made this a bright side to the fish.
As we approach the end of July I start to miss summer already, though it won’t officially be over until late September.  August seems to worry about it too, as we usually get rainy that month.  Guess I will finish up the list of summer  ‘to-do’s’ and ‘must reads’, and ‘to watch’ before August  slips away nonchalantly….

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Blueberry Mascarpone Roulade

Let them eat cake! Or so they said in France long ago before the poor folk had enough (not!) and stormed the Bastille!
This would be a welcome cake for almost any occasion--even an ordinary weekend day, like today.  After a  rather hot and muggy day here in Southern New Jersey (where isn't it hot and steamy in the continental states recently?) we ate a simple fare of grilled burgers and hotdogs al fresco.  By contrast the roulade was the sophisticated dolce vita guest.  And it did not disappoint, the roulade was light and refreshingly delicious!
I've never made a sponge cake and thought it would be most difficult, but it was as easy to make as Dorie promised it would be.  I baked it in a large baking sheet with 1 inch sides.  The filling was whipped fresh creme mixed with mascarpone cheese, sugar and vanilla combined.  Mixed that with the blueberries simmered in a simple sugar then drained and cooled. It was a snap to spread on the sponge cake and roll up and refrigerate for a couple of hours.  A quick dusting of confectioner's sugar before serving, voila!

I did keep the blueberry syrup for something cool and refreshing to drink in the next day or two.  With the temperatures climbing into the high 90's, it should make for a tasty drink but I haven't figured out a recipe for that yet.

(I'm asking Santa for a higher megapixel digital camera for Christmas.....)

Friday, July 6, 2012

When Life Gives You Cucumbers....

Then Make Pickles!

It's been a month since I've been able to cook Dorie's selections!  I've had 2 funerals (sad events) and 1 graduation (happy! My son!)  One funeral had my sister and me driving to Plymouth, Massachussetts last week.  We managed to have one day of touring (for the second time in about 15 years) and we had some enjoyment there.
So it seems appropriate to deal with the sour and sweet.  I whipped these up tonight in a matter of an hour and tested them.  They are tasty.  Husband liked them, too!  Short and sweet literally and figuratively this week.  Stay cool if you are under the heatwave this week and weekend!  Find the recipe for these on page 340 of Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan.
I hope you had a great 4th of July.  We did at home, grilling and swimming in the pool.  God Bless!