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Tag: egg

Mint and tuna salad

What’s a summer cook to do? With temperatures reaching more than thirty-eight degrees, I hardly want to switch anything on, especially the oven. We have been alternating between the pool, the Atlantic beaches (Médoc is a peninsula with eighty kilometers of beautiful beaches), trips to Cap-Ferret and some brave city slicking in Bordeaux where the heat has been literaly sizzling. Frankly, my favourite time has been spent on our ‘secret’ beach next to our home – the ocean breeze combined with the scent of pine trees and blackberry bushes make my summer.

At home, salads are served as a meal (little joke destined to Brasserie Lipp in Paris where there is a caption on their menu saying ‘no salad served as a meal’!). I can’t imagine eating anything else – it’s got to be light, fresh and tasty in these hot summer days.

Today, I jumped out of the pool before everybody and quickly made this delightful tuna, egg, haricots verts (green beans) and mint salad, dressed in a balsamic vinaigrette. It’s such a fulfilling and cooling dish thanks to the panaché of minty flavours. A summer must.

Ingredients (serve 4):

5 eggs (hard-boiled)
3 handfuls of haricots verts/ French green beans
A large handful of chopped mint
2 cans good-quality tuna fish
3-4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
6 tbsp olive oil
A dash of celery salt
A dash of pepper

Place eggs in a pot and pour enough water over the eggs to cover. Cover with a lid and boil for 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of cold water and let the eggs cool completely. Peel eggs and chop finely and set aside. Cut the tips off the green beans on both ends, rinse well and cook for 8-10 minutes in salted boiling water. Drain and set aside to cool. Chop to 1 cm. Set aside. Prepare vinaigrette – mix olive oil, celery salt, pepper and balsamic vinegar . You can add more or less balsamic vinegar to your liking. Set aside.
Assemble salad with tuna fish in the center, a layer of chopped eggs, then a layer of green beans. Sprinkle with chopped mint just before serving and drizzle with vinaigrette. Serve immediately.

Ratatouille

Whenever I cook a ratatouille, my kitchen smells like a Provençal market, filled with Mediterranean scents. Even though ratatouille is a grand classic French dish, you won’t often come across it in the restaurant menus. This is a true ‘home-cooked’ meal, to be eaten in the best traditional way, with a golden fried egg on top. I always feel invigorated when I cook this meal, not only is the scent uplifting, but the deep and rich colours of the mixed vegetables give you a sense of culinary wisdom – as if your body was a temple and you are about to make a healthy offering.

Ingredients: (serves 4)

2 medium-sized onions, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced
3 courgettes/zucchini, sliced
1 large aubergine/eggplant, cut into cubes
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely sliced
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
40 ml red wine (optional)
4 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

Slice all the vegetables accordingly.

Heat the olive oil in a large pan and cook the onions until they are transparent. Add the peppers and cook for 3 minutes. Then add aubergine, courgettes, garlic, thyme and bay leaf, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 3 minutes. Finally, add the chopped tomatoes and the red wine (optional), stir gently, cover and cook for 25 minutes on a low heat.
Serve with a fried egg, sunny-side up.

Note: Fresh thyme makes a world of difference for this dish.

Galettes

On week-ends we love having galettes. Galette is another word for savoury pancake made with buckwheat flour and served with savoury garnishing. If you go to a market and order a pancake, you will often be asked galette or crêpe. A crêpe today is referred to as a pancake made of wheat flour and served with sweet garnishing such as sugar, jam, chocolate. There really are no strict rules as it is very common to have savoury crêpes these days. Being a busy mom, I buy my galettes at the local fromagerie (cheese store) – the quality is excellent. But when I have time, I prepare the batter myself. It’s such a delicious classic meal from Brittany. Cider is perfect to accompany this meal, but buttermilk is the traditional match.

Ingredients

6 galettes
6 eggs
6 slices ham
1 pack white button mushrooms (rinsed and sliced)
Grated Emmental or Gruyère cheese
Butter

Fry the mushrooms in a frying pan with the butter, set aside. It takes about 4 minutes. I like to fry the eggs sunny side up just before so they are ready and warm. Set aside.

For each galettes, repeat the same procedure: melt a small amount of butter in a frying pan and place the galette. Add the piece of ham, sprinkle a handful of cheese and cook on a low heat till the cheese melts. Put the fried egg on the cheese, add the mushrooms on top and season with salt and pepper. Fold the pancake (see photo). Serve with a salad.

Buckwheat pancake batter (sarrasin)

250 grs buckwheat flour
2 eggs
30 grs melted butter
1 pinch salt
500 ml milk

In a large bowl, mix the buckwheat flour and make a well in the middle. Add the eggs in the center, slowly combine and stir the milk, melted butter and salt. Make sure to stir constantly and firmly so you won’t get lumps in the batter. Cover with a plate and leave to rest for at least an hour.
Heat your oven on a low heat so you can place your galettes to keep warm. When the batter is ready, melt a teaspoon of butter in a frying pan. Add one ladle of batter to form a pancake. Fry approx 2-3 minutes on a medium heat until golden. Flip sides and repeat.