Some more french food

Family dinner

Definitely craving more french cuisine after visiting Canada last week, and then  Steamed Clams With Chickpeas and Green Garlic recipe caught my eye. And then I realized that I have bunch wild garlic growing all over my property…

So the line up for this menu is the following:

Steamed Clams With Chickpeas and Green Garlic
Goat Cheese Quiche with Sweet Potato Crust
Globe artichoke salad with preserved lemon mayonnaise
Grilled Ratatouille Salad
Crusty Country Bread grilled


Napoleon (look for correct measurements in grams here )


Some cooking notes for myself:

  • whenever I make clams, recipes always indicate less time than they need to be cooked for. They end up looking perfect but usually come out a little chewy, and I always think they will continue  cooking a bit after the flame is off but they are not, so taste for doneness  next time.
  • Mayo for the artichokes comes out a little thick for drizzling, so I need to either make it a bit runny by adding more oil or toss the salad with a bit of lemon juice and oil.
  • For the quiche – I would do 1.5 portion of goat cheese next time for its flavor to stand out more.
  • Napoleon – is whole other animal and needs 2 days of cooking not to overwhelm a chef. Make pastry cream 2 days before, and dough – 1 day. Would also separate dough into 2 rectangular layers and then cut each in half after baking, or even 4 layers are so much faster than baking 12. And not forget about scraps for crumbs, so may be a little layer has to be baked just for that. Pastry cream needs non-stick pot.

Quiche was so much better next day with Ratatouille for ideal lunch And this Ratatouille recipe is so simple, I didn’t expect to come out so flavorful – it’s a definite keeper..

I loooove artichokes but someone needs to remind me next time how I hate cleaning them. They worth it nevertheless, because this salad is like crack… and glad I still had preserved lemons in my fridge for the mayo…

So for the clams – favorite part was the sauce and grilled bread (dah..). I am not a tarragon fan but its mixture with dill just worked, the sauce was rich and flavorful, and adding chickpeas makes this dish a complete meal, and don’t forget the bread.


I had some Albariño on hand, which is rich, lively and full-bodied with intense aromas of lemon zest and apples and nectarines.

I am thinking french varietal  would work even better:

  • Champagne White sparkling
  • Meursault White
  • Bâtard-montrachet White


The Napoleon….

My father turned 70 last weekend.  That, and I grew up with my grandmother making napoleon for every major holiday and family celebration. I still have her old recipe handbook with 7 variations of the napoleon which by today’s standards is not a big deal. But back then, in Ukraine,  we didn’t  even have parchment  paper, so she lined her pans with newspapers. Hopefully they used healthier ink for print then… Bottom line, I remember napoleon being an ultimate type of dessert so if this wasn’t the occasion to make it, when?!

Result –  I will try other recipes but I will be saving this one to make it again.

My parents were pleased..




or anything from this artist/ album


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