When in France, we are
often captivated by the smells which float past us from traditional and
intimate restaurants. French cuisine is one of the best in the world and often
referred to as ‘the backbone’ of most cuisines in the Western World. The
influence that French food has had is renowned, and this is what makes French
food and dishes so delicious.
Typical French dishes
rely heavily on local products, from fresh apples, to berries, leeks,
mushrooms, and stone fruits, which are amongst the most frequently used
produce. Poultry, beef, lamb, and veal are readily available year-round; game
meat is especially popular and plentiful during the hunting season.
Additionally, France has an abundance of cheese and wine which it is renowned
When it comes to
cooking the perfect French dish, it can often be slightly terrifying, as many
people believe that there needs to be a high level of standard and flair.
However, this is most certainly not the case. There are many authentic French
dishes which can be whipped up at home, or even when you are staying in one of
our luxury villas, France.
We have put together this delicious three-course meal which is sure to wow your
friends and family.
Starter: French Onion Soup
40g of butter
3 Thinly sliced onions
2 Tablespoons of water
20g of plain flour
1.5L of chicken stock
100ml of white wine
Salt and pepper
Crusty bread or a sliced baguette
60g of grated cheese, such as Comte or Gruyere
1 – On a low
heat, melt the butter in a large saucepan and sauté the onions, stirring
constantly for 15 to 30 minutes or until they start to brown. Then add two
tablespoons of cold water and cover for a further 15 minutes.
2 – Next, add the
flour and stir until the onions are coated and cook for a further five minutes stirring
constantly. Then add the stock, wine, salt and pepper and bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer gently.
3 – While the
soup is simmering, toast the bread, until it is very crispy, and place one
slice in each soup bowl. The, add the soup over the bread and the bread should
then rise to the surface. Next, add the grated cheese on top of the bread, and
place under the grill for 3 to 5 minutes until it has melted.
Main: Coq Au Vin
Ingredients: 25g of butter
150g of peeled shallots (whole)
5 Crushed garlic cloves
150g thickly cut bacon
350g of button mushrooms
500ml of red wine
500ml of chicken stock
2 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
6 Chicken thighs
Salt and pepper
1 - Heat a
casserole dish on a hob, and add butter and the shallots. Cook the
shallots until browned then stir in the garlic, bacon and thyme and cook for 2
to 3 minutes. 2 – Next, add the
mushroom then turn up the heat and add the red wine, chicken stock and balsamic
vinegar. Then add the chicken thighs, bring the sauce to a boil and then turn
down until it is simmering and simmer for about 25 minutes, or until the
chicken is tender and cooked. 3 – Next, add the
parsley and a little bit of butter and season with salt and pepper and serve
with a dressed green salad, mash potato or bread.
For the crêpes:
100g of plain
A pinch of salt
1 Tablespoon of
200ml of milk
30g of butter,
For the sauce:
75g of butter
of caster sugar
1 Medium orange,
The juice of 2-3
2-3 tablespoons of Grand
Marnier or Cointreau, plus extra for flambéing Method:
1 – Mix the
flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl, then make a well in the middle of the
mixture, and add the eggs and two tablespoons of milk; mix this together until
smooth. Pour in the remainder of the milk into the bowl, whisking continuously
until you have a smooth batter mix. Pour in the melted butter and whisk until
it is combined.
2 – Heat a crêpe
pan over a medium to high heat and add a teaspoon of vegetable oil to the pan.
Use a ladle and pour the batter mix into the pan and move it around until the
mixture coats the bottom of the pan in a thin, even layer. Cook the crêpe for
around 20-30 seconds, or until the crêpe starts to turn brown.
3 - When the
crêpe has cooked on one side, turn it over and cook for a further 20-30
seconds, or until golden. Place the cooked crêpe onto a plate, then wipe the
pan with the oiled kitchen paper and repeat the process until all the batter is
4 – For the
sauce, using a medium heat melt the butter in a pan and add the remaining
ingredients. Bring the sauce to a boil, and stir continuously until the sugar
has dissolved, then simmer for a further 2-3 minutes. Fold the crêpes into
quarters and lay them in the sauce, ensuring that the sauce soaks into them.
5 – To flambé,
heat a ladle by holding it over a flame or resting it on a hob. Remove from the
heat before adding a further 2-3 tablespoons of Grand Marnier or Cointreau.
Return to the heat to warm and carefully set light to it. Pour the flaming
liquor over the crêpes and serve immediately once the flames have gone out. Image credit: Jeremy Keith, stevendepolo
and Scott Veg.SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave