The Paris Gourmet



This black book of foodie addresses in Paris and online is an essential resource for stocking your kitchen with indispensible cooking utensils and table trimmings, procuring the best French ingredients, or dining at her most treasured restaurants.

 

Trish Deseine, former BBC cooking show host who has sold more than one million cookbooks worldwide, shares tips on food and entertaining in the true Parisian style. In The Paris Gourmet, Trish Deseine serves up a definitive guide to French cuisine, divulging her secrets on all aspects of Gallic food and entertaining. Her practical advice covers everything from selecting produce at the market to setting a holiday table. She offers a sampling of her favorite French recipes and gives pointers for creating an authentic Parisian ambience in the dining room. Trish distills etiquette tips gleaned over two decades of living in France into lists of “rules” on all aspects of entertaining, from hosting a great cocktail party to being the perfect guest. Her extensive black book of foodie addresses in Paris and online is an essential resource for stocking your kitchen with indispensible cooking utensils and table trimmings, procuring the best French ingredients, or dining at her most treasured restaurants. There is a glossary of French cookery terms in this handsome book that features a leatherette binding and ribbon page marker. Trish has become one of France’s most celebrated food writers thanks to her unpretentious approach to food. This accessible guide provides all the information you need to delight in French culinary traditions and to host like a true Parisienne.

 

Born in Ireland, Trish Deseine has lived and worked in France for twenty-five years. She regularly contributes recipes to French Elle and has published twenty award-winning cookbooks in French. She writes a popular blog and is active on Twitter. She hosted three TV programs that aired on UKTV Food and on the BBC: “Trish’s Paris Kitchen,” “Trish’s Country Kitchen,” and “Trish’s Mediterranean Kitchen.”

Roast capon with buttered sourdough,

hazelnut and truffled white sausage stuffing

 

 Chocolate, coffee and  sweet chestnut mille-feuille

  

 

Roast capon with buttered sourdough,

hazelnut and truffled white sausage stuffing

 

This may sound a little fancy, but the skills required are no more than for your usual Sunday bird. From the start of the game season right through the Christmas holidays, I still find the choice of edible birds available in Paris astounding. Every species has its haute couture level breed or appellation, from the Challans duck to the Bresse chicken. If you are not French, you may find it horrifying that I do not go through the complication of ordering turkey from my butcher or buying it at a market. Well, not any more. They are so eye-wateringly expensive. For the last few years I have picked up a very top-of-the-range capon at my supermarket and spent more on what goes inside it. This stuffing is moist, spicy and crunchy – you can always stoke up the truffle levels with a little more than those already in the boudin blanc (white pudding/sausage).

 

Preparation: 30 minutes / cooking: 1 ½ –2 hours

 

serves 6–8 (with lots of leftovers)

 

1 capon, around 6½ lb. (3 kg)

breadcrumbs made from about ½ loaf of stale sourdough bread 

½ stick (50 g) salted butter + 1½ sticks (150 g) for the stuffing

1 large onion, chopped very finely

1⁄3  cup (50 g) shelled hazelnuts, crushed roughly 

3 boudins blancs aux truffes, sliced and fried until golden

salt, pepper and a little thyme

 

Rinse and dry the inside of the capon. Set it in an oven dish and let it come closer to room temperature before roasting. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).Mix all the other ingredients together and stuff the capon. Any leftovers can be wrapped in foil and cooked beside the bird. Rub the skin of the bird with the remaining quantity of butter and season with salt. Place in the oven, immediately reduce the temperature to 350°F (180°C) and roast for about 1½ to 2 hours, basting regularly. If the breast is cooking too quickly, cover with foil. Remove the capon from the oven, let it rest on a carving board and collect the cooking juices to make gravy. Serve with chestnuts, green beans or Brussels sprouts, and roasted carrots and parsnips.

 

 

Chocolate, coffee and  sweet chestnut mille-feuille

 

A little bit fiddly, and you’ll need some space to construct the millefeuilles, but it makes for an impressive finale to a meal and can be prepared well in advance.

 

Preparation: 45 Minutes

 

serves 6

 

•  8 oz. (250 g) very good dark chocolate

•  ¾ cup (200 ml) whipping cream

•  1 tablespoon (15 g) mascarpone

•  3 tablespoons (20 g) sweet chestnut purée

•  1 teaspoon coffee essence or 1 teaspoon instant coffee dissolved  in 1 tablespoon hot water 

•  cocoa powder and icing (confectioners’) sugar or grated chocolate to serve

 

Melt the chocolate carefully and on a sheet of greaseproof (waxed) paper shape into 18 thin discs, about 3 in. (8 cm) diameter, either freestyle with the back of a spoon or using a round pastry cutter. Put them on a tray or other flat surface and leave them in the fridge to cool and harden. Whisk the cream and mascarpone together, then spoon in the chestnut purée and the coffee. Mix well. Build each millefeuille by spooning some coffee chestnut cream on a chocolate disc and setting a second disc on top. Add another blob of chestnut cream and finally a third disc. Repeat with the remaining chocolate circles to make six millefeuilles. Sprinkle with cocoa powder and icing (confectioners’) sugar, or grated chocolate, and serve with crumbled candied chestnuts.