Caponata

I used to have a hard time with certain cooked vegetable salads, such as ratatouille, even though people have insisted that I would like their version. Which I’ve always found odd, because if someone told me they didn’t like chocolate (I know – horrors!), I would not try to sell them on a brownie or chocolate cake. Ratatouille always tastes like a lot of stewed vegetable all mixed up,…

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One of the great French dishes that I make every summer, when I gather fresh vegetables and basil at my market, is Soupe au pistou. Originally from Provence, the soup is meant to use the lovely vegetables of the season, and is crowned with a spoonful of pistou in the middle of each bowl, which guests are encouraged to swirl in themselves.

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When I was finalizing the recipes in The Perfect Scoop, I wrote too many recipes and needed to make room for all the other stuff that goes into a cookbook. Although I did include a favorite recipe for Pear Caramel Ice Cream, which gets its smooth richness from caramelized pears, I decided since my first book had a great recipe for Caramel Ice Cream (that book was re-released as…

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It’s not a drag to be in Paris in August. In fact, those who stay in town always say the same thing – “This is the best time of year to be in Paris.” (Or, “Wouldn’t it be incroyable if it was like this all year?”) Even though Paris is a lot smaller, imagine if 85% of the people left New York City or San Francisco in…

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My sauce for the summer is this one: Basil Vinaigrette. Don’t get me wrong, I love pesto. But this basil-forward sauce has the punchy flavor of fresh herbs but takes less than a minute to blend together. And unlike its thicker cousin, this vinaigrette can be drizzled over everything, from fresh tomatoes and shelling beans, to risotto or roasted potatoes, and even fresh cheese, like burrata. As soon as…

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Blog Notes

Receive Blog Posts by Email and Newsletter Subscriptions A little bit back, I changed the service that sends out my monthly newsletter and blog posts to those of you who subscribe to receive them by email. If you want to get blog posts sent to you via email, to your Inbox, you can enter your email address here: Email Sign Up. To get my newsletter, which…

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Shortly after I had arrived in Paris, I was having dinner with Romain at Bistrot Paul Bert. Nearby, a couple was speaking English and when I struck up a conversation with them, I asked how they knew about the restaurant. They mentioned they saw it on a “Best of” list in a culinary/travel magazine. So it wasn’t a secret back then, nor it is now. And with good…

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When I moved to Paris, I didn’t live far from the Marché d’Aligre. Not known for having a great sense of direction or distance, I didn’t know how close I was and would take the bus home, loaded down with my purchases from the market. There was a closer market in the Bastille, but the Aligre market was especially bustling, and had an energy and dynamic…

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I came up with this cake almost fifteen years ago because I was looking for ways to use all the plums that we had when I was living in California. Northern California becomes plum central during the summer, with thanks going to Luther Burbank who developed a lot of varieties of fruit in the region, including the Santa Rosa plum, named after the town in California…

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