Fast Review: Everyone knows Paris is a culinary destination. Combine the beauty of the city with the charm and enthusiasm of author, Clotilde Dusoulier, and you’ve got a hundred recipes for success (not to mention inspiration to plan a trip to Paris). Grab this look and say oh là là!
Clotilde Dusoulier is a French food writer based in Montmartre, Paris. Her blog and cookbooks are all about celebrating the joys of cooking and being truly excited about it. She believes recipes should be simple, approachable, with a creative twist. She lives in a culinary mecca and gives readers her look into the vibrant and robust Parisian food scene. Readers of this book will fall in love with her accessible recipes, delightful stories and the beautiful photography (of both the food and the city)!
Who’s Kitchen Would You Find It In:
Francophiles, cooks with a bit of wanderlust, fans of Clotilde’s blog Chocolate & Zucchini
Nuts and Bolts:
Readers will first notice the thick cover and sturdy pages. This book is made to stand up to some wear and tear in the kitchen. The pages turn easily and fold down rather well. One can see this book easily becoming a coffee table staple (in between uses in the kitchen) for the stunning photographs, or a well-loved tome with a place of honor next to the stove. Tasting Paris begins with “Welcome to Paris” which is a beautifully written ode to the city and a brief history of the city’s cuisine. If reading about the many tasty meals available in Paris makes you salivate with city-envy, don’t worry. You’re about to learn how to bring some of those meals into your home. Each recipe comes with the French translation, a small story/introduction, notes and/or variations. The recipes are very specific with notes on timing and details so you feel comfortable with executing the dish.
Clotilde writes “Days full of promise begin with a good breakfast…” in the first recipe section aptly titled “Morning/Le Matin”. There are recipes in here to satisfy your breakfast craving: coffee, sweet, savory, filling. Options like “Chocolate Bread” and “Poached Eggs with Bread Crumbs and Onion Pickle” will have you sending out invitations to host a Parisian brunch. Readers will be taken on a journey through “La Maison Poilâne”, taught details of “The Paris Croissant” (Clotilde’s measuring stick for judging a bakery), and learn about “Le Marche” or the markets of Paris.
Did you know the French are famous for their long (very long) lunch breaks? The recipes in this section, “Noon/Le Midi”, lend themselves to brunch, long weekend lunches, and several options that might even perk up your afternoon break at work. One of the recipes that cannot be missed is the “Potato Chip and Chive Omelet”– delicious and a conversation starter (and possibly “excellent hangover food”). This chapter houses many salads, soups, sandwiches that make you long for a French market of your own to meander through, before walking home with your haul. The section focused on the “Paris Picnic” will have you packing your own basket with a classic quiche and citrusy salads to be finished off with the most beautiful plum tart.
“Afternoon/L’Apres-Midi” is a section based on the idea of after school (or after work) snacks. Since Parisians eat dinner later, they need something to hold them over until dinner. Options in this chapter are mostly sweets to go along with tea; Earl Grey Madeleines; Old-Fashioned Apple Turnovers; ice creams (with a small page dedicated to Berthillon, the famous ice cream shop); chocolate treats (read about the three generations of La Maison Cluizel chocolatiers) or be inspired to try and create macarons from Ladurée.
Pre-dinner drinks shared with friends over quick bites are featured in “Early Evening/Lapéro” This is a popular time to gather with friends– going out for L’Aperitifs or hosting friends at your own home. The food here is meant to be simple and fun. Clotilde gives her opinions on wine as she walks you through mussels, baked camembert, quick breads. There are even a few cocktails if you aren’t inspired by wine.
“Evening/Le Soir” is the inspired collection of dinner options– simple but leaving you with some valuable technical skills. There are salads, soups, a wide array of meat dishes, colorful and unique side dishes and even ideas for dessert courses. The chapter will help you perfectly put together a menu to wow guests or just spoil yourself. The cookbook ends with “Late Night/Tard Dans La Nuit” which only contains one recipe. It is a vital one, however, as it is almost a required entry. A good Parisian Onion Soup and includes a little history of the soup you may not know.
Swing by Relish Decor to grab your copy today and get cooking! Chin chin!
What to Make:
For Breakfast: Poached Eggs with Bread Crumbs and Onion Pickle (p. 17), Morning Brioche (p. 26), and obviously the Potato Chip and Chive Omelet (p. 49)
For A Picnic Lunch: Hazelnut Crusted Goat Cheese and Apple Salad (p. 53), Ratatouille Pita Sandwich with Chopped Eggs and Tahini Sauce (p. 78),
Classic Dinners: Steak with Maître d’Hôtel Butter (p. 99), Lemon Spatchcocked Chicken (p. 197), Pork Pot-Au-Feu with Warm Spices (p. 207)
For Dessert: Pears Poached in Spiced Wine (p. 236), Vanilla Ice Cream Puffs with Chocolate Sauce (p. 243)