French Onion Soup in 45 Minutes

French Onion Soup in 45 Minutes

Memories of French Onion Soup Past
I tasted my first real French Onion Soup at Cafe Figaro on Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood as a teen.  My friends and I thought Cafe Figaro with its French bistro-style cuisine was so cool.  It had a good menu, reasonable prices and a European atmosphere.  Taking a date here helped gave me an air of sophistication.  Or at least I thought.

I must have tried French Onion Soup before hanging out at Cafe Figaro with my friends, yet do not have any earlier memory.   Unfortunately Cafe Figaro disappeared almost 20 years ago.  Its French Onion Soup, however, re…

Read More

Dandelion Pesto

Dandelion Pesto

Why make Dandelion Pesto?
Dandelion pesto has brightened up many springtime dishes in past years.  In Belgium, I sometimes gathered the leaves of this wildflower from my backyard lawn to add to salads, soups and other dishes.

 
Dandelion greens grow wild
Picking dandelion greens are an annual tradition that marks the arrival of spring.  Although you can find dandelions all year long, the peak of their growth is during springtime.  Most dandelion greens go unnoticed, except to gardeners who get annoyed by the stubborn growth of this weed as it spreads across their lawn.  As quick as …

Read More

Fresh Red Beet Pasta

Fresh Red Beet Pasta

Why Bother Making Fresh Red Beet Pasta?
Recently I developed a recipe for Red Beet Ravioli with Spinach and Goat Cheese, which was absolutely yummy.  Of course, I may be a bit biased.  So don’t rely on my word, try it yourself and see how delicious is this ravioli dish!

The red beets in the pasta make the dough a vibrant purple color, which will certainly make any plate look more attractive.  The red beets also add dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and nutrients that will help you and your family remain healthy.  Contrary to common belief, red beets are not high in sugar; sugar makes up on…

Read More

Pumpkin Ravioli with Spinach and Goat Cheese

Pumpkin Ravioli with Spinach and Goat Cheese

Why Not a Pumpkin Variation for a New Family Favorite?
During a stay in Kosice, Slovakia at the end of my Journey to Greece, I fell in love with a vegetarian red beet pirohy (pierogi) dish served with fresh spinach and goat cheese.  To discover more about my love story with this delicious wholesome dish, read my recipe for Red Beet Ravioli with Spinach and Goat Cheese.

While I was testing out recipes for Red Beet Ravioli with Spinach and Goat Cheese with one of my Belgian sisters, she started harvesting pumpkins from her vegetable garden.

 

 

As I love pumpkin, espec…

Read More

Papoutsakia – Greek Stuffed Eggplants

Papoutsakia – Greek Stuffed Eggplants

How do you Make Papoutsakia?
The Greek dish called Papoutsakia can be translated from Greek as the Little Shoes or the Little Slippers.  As charming the name may be in Greek, Papoutsakia are eggplants stuffed with seasoned ground veal and tomatoes.  Sounds simple, right? Well, they are!

 

My friend, Thomais, has kindly provided me with this recipe for Papoutsakia.  As you may remember, she has also taught me how to make Authentic Greek Pasticcio and Greek Stuffed Peppers and Tomatoes.  Click on the names of those dishes to find the corresponding recipe.  I appreciate so much her sh…

Read More

Authentic Greek Pasticcio

Authentic Greek Pasticcio

What makes this Pasticcio Recipe Authentic?
Pasticcio is prepared in Greek restaurants all over the world.  Not surprisingly, it’s also made by families and in taverns all over Greece.  Most families follow a recipe passed on to them by a dear family member and then adjusted over time to satisfy personal taste.

 
What is Pasticcio?
Those unfamiliar with Pasticcio may wonder what is this romantic-sounding dish.  The easiest way to describe it would be as a Greek version of lasagna bolognese.   This is not entirely fair as a comparison.

In Greece Pasticcio is customarily prepared w…

Read More

Pasta with Fennel and Fresh Garlic

Pasta with Fennel and Fresh Garlic

Pasta with Fennel and Fresh Garlic Makes a Quick Yummy Meal
Not everyone enjoys the strong-licorice flavor of fresh fennel.  It can be a bit overwhelming if you eat a lot of it in one sitting.

Fennel offers many health benefits, making it worthwhile to find ways to include it in your diet.  Full of good intentions, I often buy fennel at the grocery store and farmers’ market, hoping to find a way during the coming days to use it.  Chopped fennel with some slices of orange and a vinaigrette dressing makes an easy salad.

However, when cooked fennel’s pronounced taste becomes more subdued a…

Read More

Wild Garlic Pesto

Wild Garlic Pesto

Wild Garlic Pesto on Pasta is a Springtime Favorite
The sense of smell can trigger strong memories, no matter how faraway they may be.  Wild garlic, also known by many other names, such as ramps, spring onion, ramson, wild leek, bear’s garlic, and wood leek, is probably my most faithful olfactory trigger.  Wild garlic is not actually a variation of garlic, but rather a variation of leek.

At 16 years old I lived  on a farm in Belgium as an exchange student.  Farm life was different in almost every way from my life in Los Angeles.  After school I’d walk home to the farm, a few kilometers fro…

Read More

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bread

What recipe makes my Pumpkin Bread a Fall Favorite?
By now you know that I love pumpkin.  Making food with pumpkin is how I connect best with the season of autumn.   Every year tradition calls for making pumpkin bread at least once.  My kids love it and are always asking me to make it.

I’ve been using the same faithful recipe for almost 30 years. Of course, I’ve tried other recipes, such as one calling for cream cheese to give the pumpkin bread more of a cheesecake finish. Another recipe suggested chopping up and dropping in some stem ginger to give a stronger spicy flavor. I’m always on t…

Read More

Tomato Tarte Tatin

Tomato Tarte Tatin

Tomato Tarte Tatin is Simply Elegant
You have probably heard of Apple Tarte Tatin (tarte tatin aux pommes), the French version of hot apple pie.  Slices of apple caramelized in a pan on the stove or in the oven before placing puff pastry dough on top and baking it further.  At time of serving the pan is turned over so the pastry is on the bottom and the hot caramelized fruit on top.

Although tarte tatin is often made with fruit, it can be just as delicious when made with vegetables in a savory version.  A few months ago I shared on this site my recipe for Belgian Endive Pie, another delici…

Read More

4 Vegan Tomato Soups

4 Vegan Tomato Soups

4 Vegan Tomato Soups to Sustain you through Winter
During the winter I enjoy a hearty soup that will nourish me, warm me up and keep me satisfied for hours.  Something about adding tomatoes to a soup gives it an extra earthy flavor.  It’s also a wonderful way to add a shot of vitamins and fiber to your diet.

I love making soups all year round with fresh and canned tomatoes and other vegetables, grains and beans.  In general, soups are inexpensive to make, take little time to prepare and remain available for serving over a couple days.

Here are 4 Vegan Tomato Soups from among the recipes…

Read More

Vegan Pumpkin Dumplings

Vegan Pumpkin Dumplings

What makes Vegan Pumpkin Dumplings a Fall Favorite?
A couple years ago when I started my Vegan Before 6:00 diet I was looking for new fun ways to prepare vegan main dishes.  Around that time I was practicing how to make homemade dim sum.  I kept trying new dim sum recipes so I’d get the techniques down.

As many of you know, I love pumpkin during the fall, especially in savory dishes.  So creating a new fall favorite with pumpkin put a smile on my face.  When a friend came over for lunch I prepared these Vegan Pumpkin Dumplings and instantly fell in love!

The filling is quick and simple …

Read More

Handmade Wonton Wrappers

Handmade Wonton Wrappers

Why Make Your Own Handmade Wonton Wrappers?
Wonton wrappers are known by several names:  dim sum wrappers, dim sum skins, and dumpling skins, among the most common  Yet in the end this single basic Handmade Wonton Wrapper recipe will help you prepare yummy dim sum dumplings to eat steamed, grilled or fried.

There are other types of dough for other types of dim sum.  To make make buns you will need a dough with a leavening agent, such as yeast or baking powder.  For dumplings to boil in wonton soup, you will need a sturdier dough usually made with eggs added.  Last there is a transparent do…

Read More

Belgian Beef Carbonnade

Belgian Beef Carbonnade

Belgian Beef Carbonnade Made Easy
Belgian Beef Carbonnade is known by many names:  Flemish Carbonnade, Belgian Beef Stew, Beef and Beer Stew, are among the most common.  Although recipes for Belgian Beef Carbonnade generally include beef and beer, there are many variations.  Some families spread mustard on bread and add it to the pot for thickness and to reduce the sweetness of this dish.  Many use dark abbey beer to give a deeper flavor.  Depending on the beer used it may also add sweetness.  I prefer a blond Abbey (light ale) beer instead since it lends a more subtle flavor that blends perf…

Read More

Pumpkin Latke Waffles

Pumpkin Latke Waffles

Why make Pumpkin Latke Waffles?
This Hanukkah season I wanted to create a new kind of latke (potato pancake) with some leftover boiled potatoes and a wedge of fresh pumpkin.  As many of you know, I love using pumpkin, especially in savory dishes.  For more pumpkin recipes follow this link or this other link.

Autumn is also my favorite season of the year.  I adore the various hues of yellow, red, orange and brown everywhere as well as the abundance of harvested vegetables and fruit.  All kinds of squash, nuts, apples, and pears are among my top choices during autumn.  

Adding pumpkin to …

Read More
Page 1 of 3
1 2 3