Category Archives: EASY RECIPES

Des recettes faciles et équilibrées, réalisées en moins de 30 minutes, avec des ingrédients de saison.
Easy and healthy recipes, made in less than 30 minutes, with fresh seasonal produce.

French light chocolate cake with pistachios

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I have a confession to make : I’m not a fan of chocolate. Well, I like it and don’t say no to a square of milk chocolate from time to time. But in restaurants and at home, I systematically choose a lemon cake or a fruit tart over a chocolate dessert.

But I know that I’m quite alone in this case and it’s sometimes difficult to stand in this sea of chocolate lovers. So I’ve decided to add a chocolate cake recipe to my repertoire, to make when I have guests or when I want to make friends and family happy.
But this cake needed to be chocolaty without being overly sweet, not greasy and light as a feather. So bye bye dense brownies and rich fondants !

While searching, I found the best combination, fluffy eggs for the lightness, good chocolate, not too much butter, hazelnut flour and buckweat flour for the nuttyness.

Also, it goes well with many toppings : chopped hazelnuts, pistachios, roasted pears or apples, in winter, and strawberries and raspberries in summer.

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French light chocolate cake with pistachios

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

100 g unsalted butter
100 g bittersweet dark chocolate (70 to 72 percent is ideal)
4 large eggs
100 g blond cane sugar
35 g buckwheat flour
35 g hazelnut flour
A pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To serve
Chopped pistachios
Chopped hazelnuts
Roasted pears
Strawberries

1. Preheat your oven at 180°C and butter a round pan. Melt your butter with the chocolat in a microwave or in a double boiler, stirring often.
2. Beat the eggs with the sugar and salt in a mixer until light and fluffy (5_10 minutes)
3. Gently fold in the butter and chocolate. Add the flours and vanilla.
4. Pour in your pan and bake for 20-30 minutes. Serve with the suggested toppings or as is.

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Late Summer Bell Pepper Gazpacho with Mint

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Today, a late summer gazpacho, inspired by Mexican flavors, ideal for those last hot summer days of August. Those days are harder to endure when you’re already back to work, with the burning cobblestones and offices without air conditioning. In Biscarrosse, near the beach, this end-of summer feel was definitely in the air with the last batch of vacationers leaving on Saturday, with a heavy heart and a truck full. Keys are given back to the owners, the kids are seated in the back of the car and it’s the big departure ! Weekends in September are still full with tourists but the atmosphere is totally different, more like Indian summer.

Back to school days are just ahead of us with this slight nostalgia for long lazy days and this hint of sadness when you already think of your next holiday. I’ve always felt a little depressed knowing that I will have to wait 9 more month until the beginning of summer and its sunny perspective. But soon, I will be taken way by the whirlwind of back to school days and the newness there is to it. In a few days, kids will be passing by my windows for their first day, with their new outfit and worried look before crossing the school gates. All in all, the routine will soon get its way and summer days won’t feel as painful as they feel now.

To make it last a little longer and ease the pain of it, make this gaspacho this week, preferably the day before so you can enjoy it directly when you come home from work. If you’re lucky enough to be on holidays, you’re also allowed to make it to enjoy for a long evening by the pool or in the garden :)

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Bell Pepper Gazpacho with Mint

Serves 4

Ingrédients

1 yellow onion, minced
4 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
3 tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp of sugar
1 garlic clove, minced
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp of Espelette pepper or other mild pepper powder
500ml of vegetable stock
Mint leaves
Salt and pepper

Instructions

1. In a saucepan, sauteed the onion with 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the garlic and 2/3 of the bell peppers. Cook for 5 minutes then add the pepper powder, sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
2. Add the vegetable stock and bring to boil. Then reduce the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Mix the soup until smooth and let it cool first on the counter then in the fridge.
3. When the soup is cold, add the lemon zest and the rest of the bell peppers. Drizzle with the rest of the olive oil and serve !

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Chilled Zucchini Soup with Feta and Dill

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I’ve been home from holidays since Sunday. I visited Portugal and came back tanned, rested and truly amazed by this country. I don’t actually realise that we’ve been gone for 10 days, it went by so fast and at the same time it was so dense and rich that I feel I’ve been away for a longer time. I’m already editing and selecting the photos for two posts to come (one on Lisbon and the other on the Algarve region) with recipe that have inspired me while I was there.

Today, I’m sharing a recipe that fits in the category “easy, quick and to do today”, it’s totally in season and really convenient ! Zucchinis are overflowing our markets in France and it’s probably one of my favorite summer vegetable (even if I’m guilty of consuming it all year). I think it’s a very versatile vegetable, I use it raw in salads, roasted with a fish, sauteed in an omelet, grated in a gratin. You got it, I can’t stop using it :) . However it was new to me to have it as a chilled soup, I think it is really worth sharing as it offers a good alternative to the traditional summer gazpacho.

I strangely have a similar problem with feta cheese, I always have some in my fridge and when I’m think about new recipe it always finds a way to pop up in my head. In my defense, it really adds a new layer of flavor here as it counterbalances the “green” flavor of the zucchini and gives a salty and creamy note to the dish.

As a finishing note, I added dill, which I love, to vary from mint or basil, our summer staples.

I will come back next week to share my Portuguese adventures :)

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Chilled zucchini soup with feta and dill
Serves 2

Ingredients

2 medium size zucchini (300g), diced
1 onion, minced
1 1/4 cup (30cl) of vegetable stock
1.8 oz (50g) of feta, crumbled
2 tbsp of olive oil
1/2 bunch of dill
Salt & Pepper

Instructions

1. In a saucepan, cook the onion until translucent with 1 tbsp of olive oil, then add the zucchini. Let it cook for 5 minutes.
2. Add the stock, and let the soup simmer for 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
3. Let the soup cool down.
4. Mix the soup with the dill, until smooth. Serve with the crumbled feta, some springs of dill and 1 tbsp of olive oil.

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Fabulous chocolate & pistachio custard with silken tofu

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Lately, I haven’t been able to post as often as I would like. The weather has been capricious and I had to forget all the photoshoots I had in mind : bye bye bucolic picnics and dinners outside. But as it turns out, the sun is sticking around and I won’t have an excuse for those photos and summer recipes. These photos are a bit old, and I even hesitated before posting them as I feel they weren’t really in season any more but this recipe is so fabulous that it would have been such a shame not to share it with you.
These chocolate custards have saved many dinners recently. Often, when I cook for my friends and my family, I get stuck for the dessert. Usually I’m a bit lazy to bake a cake that monopolize the oven (I save this for the afternoon snack : le goûter) and I feel that fruit salad as simple and good as they may be don’t get the most votes.
But these custards are really winners : the guests are always happy to have a chocolate dessert (even the one that rarely eat chocolate) and the hostess is relieved because it literally takes 2 minutes to make. The only caveat is that it must be made in advance for the custard to settle. Otherwise, it is deceptively easy with a mixer and no egg to beat, I’m even a little ashamed to call it a “recipe”.

Especially as after a quick internet search I realized that the whole world already knows this recipe, except me. To be fair, even if I use firm tofu a lot, I’m not really familiar with silken tofu and I only recently came to use it in different recipes for sauces or creams (it is off topic, but I highly recommend this mousseline/mayo – 100g of silken tofu, 1 tbsp of olive oil, 1tbsp of lemon juice, 1 tbsp of mustard- to use as a dip for asparagus or raw vegetables)
Nonetheless, I’m sharing the recipe today, in case, like me, you are not yet aware of the virtues of silken tofu !

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Fabulous chocolate & pistachio custard with silken tofu

Serves 6

Ingredients

400g (14 oz) of silken tofu
200g (7 oz) of chocolate (milk or dark)
A handful of chopped pistachios

Instructions

1. Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie.
2. In your mixer bowl, place the tofu and add the melted chocolate. Mix until smooth.
3. Transfer to 6 small ramekins and top with chopped pistachios. Place in the fridge for at least 4 hours (12 is ideal)

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