French recipe for a silky and smooth Pumpkin Soup with two main ingredients. Healthy, colorful, and easy to make. If you have a blender, you have to try this recipe as soon as pumpkins are in season.
To impress your guests, serve this soup in individual pumpkins.
- 2 leeks (white part only)
- 1 medium pie pumpkin or sugar pumpkin (about 1.5 kg)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Some heavy whipping cream or sour cream (optional)
- Some fresh herbs (cilantro, green onion, parsley) to garnish
- Wash and chop the leeks.
- Wash the pumpkin and cut it in half horizontally. Scrape the inside of the pumpkin clean with the spoon or ice cream scoop (you can use the seeds for another recipe).
- Peel and cut into regular cubes.
- In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Cook and stir leeks until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add pumpkin cubes and cook for 5-7 more minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Transfer the veggies into a large pot. Add just enough water to cover them, and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper. Simmer about 15 minutes until the pumpkin is cooked.
- Puree the soup with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Add a little more boiling water if the soup is too thick. Taste for flavor, and feel free to add more salt or pepper.
- Serve hot, with sour or heavy whipping cream and fresh herbs.
For a special presentation:
- Cut off the top of a small pumpkin and scrape the inside.
- Before adding the soup, heat the pumpkin for few minutes in the oven, then add the hot soup and serve immediately.
Only 2 ingredients are needed to prepare this delicious French chocolate mousse. No dairy products and no sugar added; all you need is dark chocolate and eggs. So simple and so tasty! The only downside is that you should allocate about 4 hours to chill the mousse before serving.
In small individual glasses, the chocolate mousse will be perfect for a cafe gourmand!
French Chocolate Mousse
- 200 g dark or milk chocolate chips or break chocolate into small pieces
- 6 fresh eggs (at room temperature)
- 1 pinch salt
- Melt chocolate in a microwave (or use a double boiler) until the chocolate is completely melted. If you use a microwave: put the chocolate in a large microwave-safe bowl, microwave for 25 seconds, then stir. Microwave for 25 more seconds and stir again. Continue microwaving and stirring until the chocolate is liquid, smooth, and shiny.
- Separate egg yolks from the egg whites. Add egg yolks in melted chocolate and mix well.
- Whisk egg whites with salt until stiff.
- Carefully fold the egg whites into chocolate using a spatula.
- You should have a smooth and fluffy mousse.
- Divide the mousse among individual glasses. Refrigerate your dessert for 4-6 hours.
This is very unique recipe. All you have to do is whisk all the ingredients together in the mixer bowl for 1-2 minutes, bake for 30 minutes and voilà, you can enjoy the cake with your favorite cup of tea.
Quick Almond Cake
- 190 g sugar
- 4 eggs
- 100 g unsalted butter softened
- 1 pinch of salt
- 100 g almond flour
- 60 g all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 Tbsp sliced almonds (optional)
- 1 tsp confectioner’s sugar (optional)
- Preheat oven to 380 degrees F. Grease a cake pan.
- In a medium bowl whisk all the ingredients together until combined.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared cake pan. You can sprinkle with almonds if desire.
- Bake in the oven for about 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.
- Remove your cake from the oven and allow it to cool. Transfer to a plater. Dust it with powdered sugar before serving.
The flourless chocolate cake is a delicate gluten free dessert that melts in your mouth. The recipe is absolutely simple without any flour! All you need is chocolate, butter, sugar and eggs.
Flourless chocolate cake
- 200 g chocolate chips (60%)
- 150 g unsalted butter
- 200 g sugar
- 6 eggs
- 2 pinches salt
- 1/4 tbsp powdered sugar
- Melt the chocolate and butter on a water bath or in a microwave. Mix well.
- Add sugar and mix well.
- Separate yolks from egg whites.
- Add yolks into the melted chocolate and mix.
- Add salt to the egg whites, and beat into a thick foam.
- Using a spatula carefully fold in whipped egg whites into chocolate mass.
- Preheat oven to 380 degrees F. Generously butter a baking pan and pour the batter into the cake pan.
- Bake in in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes. The exact time of baking depends on the oven, size and quality of the baking pan. Once the the cake is moist and not liquid inside (it’s not a lava cake) – it’s ready. Please, don’t overcook!
- Let the cake cool then carefully remove it from the pan. Dust it with powdered sugar and serve.
The pears are poached with a vanilla bean and a bit of sugar. Then, they are cooled down and sprinkled with shredded chocolate. This is a very easy recipe to make and will be perfect for a special event or holidays.
Easy poached pears with chocolate
- 4 pears
- 750 ml water
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- 1 vanilla bean cut in half longwise
- 50 g dark chocolate
- Some Fresh mint
- Peel the pears.
- Cut them in half, then core.
- In the pot, bring water to a boil with sugar and vanilla bean.
- Add the pears and boil for 10 to 15 minutes, until they became soft but keep their shape. Remove the pot from the heat and let the pears cool in the syrup.
- To serve, drain the pears well. Then place each half on an individual plate.
- Sprinkle with shredded chocolate and decorate with mint.
- You can also serve this dessert in a glass.
Pureed soups are wonderful way to enjoy vegetables. Plus you don’t have to go grocery shopping in order to make this soup. You can find all the ingredients that you’ll need in your pantry. Use any meat you have in your fridge. And same with peas, use any peas you have, it can be frozen, canned or fresh.
Pureed Pea Soup
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 200 g chicken fillet
- 1 onion
- 5 potatoes
- 400 g frozen peas (or canned)
- 1,5 L water
- salt and pepper to taste
- some sour cream
- Cut chicken into small pieces. Peel and chop onion(half-moon). Peel and cut the potatoes in quarters.
- In a large pot, heat the olive oil, add chicken and cook until beginning to golden brown. Add onion and sauté for about 5 minutes, constantly stirring.
- Add the potatoes and cover with water. Bring to a boil.
- Add frozen or canned peas(drained). Bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for another 20 minutes.
- Puree the soup with blender until smooth. If the soup is too thick, add some water.
- Divide soup into bowls and top it with sour cream.
- If you have some extra time, you can make a design on your soup. For this you will need to transfer the sour cream into the small ziplock, cut the tiny hole in the corner(1-2 mm) and use your imagination . 😉
Duchess potatoes (Pommes de terre duchesse) are a French classic recipe made from mashed potatoes with butter and egg yolks. Using a pastry bag, mashed potatoes are formed into roses and baked in the oven until golden brown.
The dish looks very elegant and is served as a side dish for meat, fish or vegetables.
- 1.5 kg potatoes
- 200 g butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
- A little (on the tip of a knife) grated nutmeg (optional)
- 4 egg yolks
- Peel the potatoes, cut into pieces and boil in salted water. Once the potatoes are cooked (pierce the potatoes with a knife or fork to check), immediately drain the water.
- Mash hot potatoes into a puree, adding butter. Salt, pepper and add nutmeg.
- Add egg yolks and mix very well. Puree should be soft and without lumps.
- Preheat oven to 200C. Line a baking sheet with baking paper or a silicone mat.
- Transfer the puree to a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe the roses of the desired size onto a baking sheet.
- Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, for about 10 minutes.
This is not a ratatouille, it is a “tian!” I often have to correct my guests when they ask me if this is a ratatouille. 😉
Tian is a french recipe of baked vegetables made with alternating rows of sliced eggplant, tomato, onion and zucchini. A tian itself is an earthenware dish that goes from the oven to table. Everything baked in this dish is called tian.
- 2 onions
- 4 cloves garlic
- 7 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 eggplant
- 1-2 zucchini
- 1-2 summer squash
- 5 tomatoes
- 1/2 tsp herbs de provence
- Peel and cut the onion into half moons. Peel and cut the garlic into 2-4 pieces.
- In a medium skillet heat 2-3 Tbsp of olive oil until hot, add onion and sauté until tender, stirring frequently. Add garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat.
- Preheat the oven to 400℉. Spread the cooked onion on the bottom of a baking dish.
- Cut zucchini and summer squash into 1/4 inch slices.
- Cut the eggplant into 1/4 inch slices.
- Core and cut tomatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices.
- Arrange the zucchini, eggplant, squash and tomatoes in alternating rows. Continue until the baking dish is filled.
- Sprinkle the vegetables with salt, pepper, Herbs de Provence and drizzle with the remaining olive oil.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and golden. If the vegetables are not ready, but the top is starting to burn, cover the tian with aluminum foil.
The homemade olive tapenade is a dip or paste made with olives (black or green), anchovies and capers. This appetizer comes from Provence, France and is great with fresh bread or toast. With the help of a food processor, or blender, this hors d’oeuvre is ready within 5 minutes.
Homemade Olive Tapenade
- 200 g black olives pitted
- 1 Tbsp capers (optional)
- 20 g anchovies filets in oil
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 lemon (juice only)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Combine all ingredients in an electric blender. Pulse a few times until finely chopped. The tapenade should have small pieces of olives. Do not over blend!
- Serve with crackers or fresh baguette slices.
Here is the incredibly delicate and gluten-free almond cake. This is the “Amandier” recipe by renowned French Pastry chef Christophe Michalak with minor modifications. The main ingredients are almond flour and mascarpone.
If you enjoy this recipe, check out my other gluten-free desserts, such as the delicious banana muffins!
Gluten-free almond cake
- 6 eggs
- 180 g sugar
- 40 g honey
- 300 g almond flour
- 140 g softened salted or unsalted butter
- 100 g mascarpone cheese
- Some orange zest
- 1 Tbsp liquid vanilla (or 1 packet of vanilla sugar) (optional)
- 2 Tbsp sliced almonds
- Some powdered sugar (optional)
- Preheat oven to 330°F (150°С). Grease baking pan with butter or line with parchment paper.
- In a mixer bowl, put eggs, sugar, and honey.
- Mix together.
- Add almond flour and mix again.
- In another bowl, mush the butter and mascarpone cheese together using a fork.
- Add the mascarpone and butter to the egg-sugar mixture and mix again.
- Add orange zest and vanilla to the batter. Mix well for the last time.
- Pour the batter into baking pan.
- Sprinkle with sliced almonds.
- Bake in the preheated oven until golden, about 45 minutes. Allow the almond cake to cool before removing it from the pan. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving.