Friday, 27 May 2016

vendredi fleurs...


Too beautiful not too share, merci encore to lovely Kayo for les belles fleurs.

Note to self...buy a house with a garden!

bon fin de semaine à tous, Leeann x



Wednesday, 25 May 2016

a day out...

Yesterday we had a day out and what a fabulous day it was. We visited the water lily gardens that inspired Claude Monet to purchase some plants and go on to paint his famous water lily paintings. 

We are lucky that the gardens are only a 45 minute drive away and May is the perfect month to visit as this is the month when they start to bloom... 
 Such a beautiful and tranquil place, it is as if you are magically transported to another world.

The gardens are classified as they are an important part of France's history. You can read  about that history here.


The gardens also contain a lovely lake and a rose covered walk way which was heavenly as all of the roses were in bloom.


I could have spent the day here just wandering around and taking photos. Unfortunately I took so many photos of the  water lilies that my phone battery ran flat which meant that I could not take photos of our lunch at a nearby restaurant.

 Note it is possible to eat at the gardens and our guests ate there yesterday and were most impressed. We will leave this for our next visit as we chose to eat in a restaurant in a nearby village that is normally always full so jumped at the chance to get a table at just short notice.


A fabulous day out and a must do if you are ever in the area....

The photo above is one of my favourites and the flower is such a fabulous colour.



You can see why my phone battery ran flat as everywhere you looked there were so many beautiful flowers...

à demain, Leeann x

Monday, 23 May 2016

bonne semaine à tous...


As I write this, we have sunshine streaming through the window,  I cannot think a nicer way to start a brand new week.

Today's photos was taken last Friday, in the garden of a chateau, which is only a couple of minutes drive from us.

  
The garden is open to the public in the summer months and is fabulous and VERY French. Speaking of chateaux, did you know that the Dordogne has 1,001 chateaux?

bonne semaine à tous, Leeann x

Friday, 20 May 2016

French Food Friday...Bordeaux Cannelés



recipe and photo from here


As I write this, I am about to get my Cannelés mixture out of the fridge and attempt at making some more. 

For those of you that want to give them a try, here is the recipe that I am using...

Ingredients

500 mls milk
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
25 g butter (diced)
200g (1 cup)sugar
100g (1 cup) plain flour
3 tbs rum
1 vanilla pod

Method

The day before
Split the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape the seeds out and put everything (seeds and pod) into a saucepan with the milk and butter
Heat it until it simmers and then remove from the heat and let it cool down a bit
In a bowl whisk the eggs and egg yolks together with the sugar, add the flour and mix
Strain the milk into the egg mixture and stir until the batter looks almost like crêpe batter
Let it cool completely and add the rum to the mixture
Refrigerate the batter for at least 24 hours (be patient!)
The day you want to bake the cannelés, stir the batter and fill the moulds to 3/4.

Cooking

Preheat the oven to 240C
Bake for 15 minutes at 240C, lower the heat to 180C and bake for another 40 to 60 minutes depending if you like them golden or very dark.
Take the silicon moulds out of the oven, leave them for about 10 min and then take off the cannelés from the moulds, leave them to cool down completely on cooling a rack.



             bon vendredi à tous, Leeann x
 

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Cannelés, Cannelés, Cannelés...


Bonjour mes belles,

Yesterday was the day to make mini Cannelés. Not as hard as you would expect but it is a matter of getting the cooking time right and a couple of minutes makes all the difference as I found out.



End result 60 minutes is simply too much, 30 minutes is not enough and around 45 minutes is perfect but a lot depends on what size mould you have, type of oven and if you like them well done or just cooked.I will share the recipe with you on Friday so that you can have a try....

à plus, Leeann x


Monday, 16 May 2016

a favourite book based in France...



Today I am linking up to An Accidental blog written  by the fabulous Paulita who is busy planning a move to SW France.

One of my favorite books based in France It is called La Belle Season and is written by Patricia Atkinson who I have mentioned before as being a very inspiring woman who despite the odds took over a local vineyard and went on to make some of the best wine in our area.

It is a remarkable book and a must for any woman contemplating a move to France.

You can read more about the book here.

This post is a bit shorter than I would have liked but I have not yet started dinner and French Boyfriend will be arriving any minute so I must love you and leave you...

à demain, Leeann x

Friday, 13 May 2016

French food Friday...Hot chocolate soufflé


recipe and photo from here

This week's recipe is an easy one, well easy for those of you that love making soufflés...


Hot chocolate soufflé

serves: 6
preparation time: 15 mins
cooking time:  10 mins

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter, for greasing
  • 125 g dark chocolate, rouhly chopped
  • 2 tsp dark rum (optional)
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 4 eggs, separated, plus 2 egg whites
  • Pinch of salt
  • Icing sugar, for dusting 

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6 and grease six ramekin dishes. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure the surface of the water does not touch the bowl. Stir in the rum, if using. Remove from the heat and add the crème fraîche, then the egg yolks.
  • In a large, clean, dry bowl, whisk all the egg whites and the salt to soft peaks. Fold one-quarter of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then fold in the remaining whites.
  • Fill the prepared ramekins to the top with the mixture, then clean the rims using your finger and thumb. Place on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until nicely risen. Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately. For a delicious party trick, serve your soufflés with an ice-cream drop.
  • Before you make the soufflés, scoop out six balls of good-quality vanilla ice cream and place on a freezer-proof plate. Keep in the freezer until ready to serve. When serving the soufflés at the table, drop an ice-cream ball into each soufflé.
 très bon vendredi à tous, Leeann x