Friday, 12 September 2014

French Food Friday...le gâteau magique



recipe and photo from here

Bonjour mes belles,

This weeks recipe is for le gâteau magique and the reason that it is called this is because it is a cake with three components, part cream, part flan and part génoise.

English version follows below....

Comment on fait ?Facile à préparer, la liste des ingrédients se résume à cinq composants de n’importe quel placard de base : beurre, sucre, farine, œufs et lait. Après avoir mélangé au batteur 4 jaunes d’œufs avec 150 g de sucre, on ajoute 125 g de beurre fondu, 115 g de farine, 1 c. à soupe d’eau, 50 cl de lait et les 4 blancs montés en neige en dernier. On obtient une pâte très liquide et très différente : une consistance de type pâte à flan, avec sur le dessus, une mousse à base des blancs en neige. Ensuite, il ne reste qu’à l’enfourner pendant 1h à 150 °C. Et abracadabra, la magie opère… à la sortie du four, trois couches distinctes apparaissent !

Let the magic begin...
Easy to prepare, the ingredients list consists of five components of any basic wardrobe: butter, sugar, flour, eggs and milk.


Make the batter by mixing  4 egg yolks 150 g sugar, then add 125g of melted butter, 115g flour, 1 soup spoon of water and the egg whites beaten stiff last of all.

A very different and very liquid paste is obtained: a dough-like consistency to the bottom with the top, a foam based on egg whites. Then it only remains to bake for 1 hour at 150 ° C. And abracadabra, magic happens ... out of the oven, three distinct layers appear!

For a variation add cocoa powder or berries, anything that takes your fancy......

Wishing you all a magique vendredi, Leeann x

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

so french...

 

 
Bonjour mes belles,
 
I hope that you are having a good week. Any spare time I get this week is being spent on sourcing taps, sink etc. and it is taking far longer than I thought...I am now taking a break from this exciting! task and I will resume my search tomorrow.
 
Thought that I would share a couple more photos that I took last week on our "wee break" to the mid Pyrenees. 
 
There is something timeless about old French doors and windows and no matter where you go in France, you will find some charming examples just waiting to be photographed....
 





so many beautiful textures and so very inspiring....
 
à demain, Leeann x

Monday, 8 September 2014

my current obsession...

 
photo from here
 
 
.....is the bathroom in the new project that we are about to commence shortly.
 
 
We spent the whole of Saturday looking at a variety of floor tiles, shower trays etc. along with what seemed like half of France.
 
French Boyfriend and I joined the queue and waited paitiently for the next available assistant in the bathroom shop.
 
Finally our turn arrived and we were informed that our choice was not available due to the fact that the Italian factory that made the tiles had burnt down. Decided that it was not very polite to ask why they were still on display and asked if he had anything similar.
 
After looking at a few samples we decided on some imitation stone tiles and we placed the order and paid the deposit and advised that we would call Monday if we required additional.
 
Saturday night I happened to glance at the order and to my horror saw the word BEIGE.
 
Started to panic and had visions of a truck load of BEIGE tiles arriving outside my front door. Do not get me wrong, I have nothing against BEIGE but it goes not feature in the colour scheme for our new project.
 
 As soon as the shop opened this morning we placed a call to the salesman who amended the order and I can now rest easy. I wish that was true but now have to place the order for the shower tray, bathroom lighting, heated towel rail etc. so suspect that this obsession maybe around for a while.
 
Back to the bathroom catalogues I go.....
 
très bonne semaine à tous, Leeann x
 
 p.s. I have the bottle of champagne chilling in the fridge just in case the process starts to get overwhelming and I need something to calm me down!


Friday, 5 September 2014

Foodie Friday....Vanilla Rum Plum Jam



Recipe and photo from here

Bonjour mes belles,

Inspired by the delicious plum jam served each morning at Chateau Lunac, I decided that I needed to find a decent recipe and this one appeals to both of us. In the process of searching for a recipe I found a very interesting food blog, what would we do without the internet?

The trouble with having rum in the house is that I need to hide my bottle of cooking rum as French Boyfriend loves to have an after dinner digestif and when I go to make his favourite apple tart recipe, I find in the cupboard a very sad and empty looking bottle.

 
Vanilla Rum Plum Jam
Ingredients:
  • 1 kilo / 2 lb. plums, halved, pitted, and coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1/2 cup rum

Directions:
Put the plums, sugar, water and lemon juice in a heavy pot. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the inner seeds. Add bean and seeds to the pot. Bring the mixture to the boil. Then simmer, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens up, about 30 minutes. Add rum and move a pot from heat. Remove the vanilla bean and discard.


Note: It is important to seal the jars as soon as you have filled them to ensure the jam remains sterile. However, you should then leave the jars to cool completely before labeling and storing them to avoid the risk of burns.


Spoon the jam into warmed, sterilized jars. Seal, label, and store in a cool, dark place.


Un très bon vendredi à toutes et tous !! Leeann x

Thursday, 4 September 2014

a magical place....photos of Najac


 
 Bonjour mes belles,

Apologies that this post is a day later than planned but yesterday turned out to be a very busy day and this morning as been much of the same.

As soon as I saw the village of Najac, I knew that I was looking at something special. I loved the way that you follow the streets to reach the chateau, an enchanting journey as you never know what is around the next corner...so very medieval!



Everywhere I looked I saw natural beauty which is a contrast to a lot of the beaux villages  in France which sometimes look like they have been surgically enhanced and over restored.

 

 The architecture is totally different to here in the Dordogne and it is less built up with lots of wide open green spaces containing lots of cows and sheep. Perhaps this is the reason that I liked it as the countryside reminded me a lot of New Zealand.



In the background of this photo you can see the 2CV parking on the brow of the hill, every French villages needs at least one 2CV parked nearby and I loved the colour of this one....


I just hope that they left the brake on....

 
 
How fabulous is this old façade? I adore it in its shabby state...


The chateau of Najac has such an interesting history. You can read all about it here.

 

I think that the ivy adds to the ambiance of the village and no doubt has been there for a very long time...

 
 
A stunning contrast, the roughness of the stone façade, wooden shutters and the trailing petunias which really do give it a lovely boost of colour.



This shot of the village was taken from the chateau itself.....



Another stunning window box display....

Hope that you are having a fabulous week, I am off to give French Boyfriend a hand in the shop.

à demain, Leeann x

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

missing Najac...



Bonjour from a sunny Eymet,

I woke up this morning missing Najac and the lovely Chateau that we stayed in, situated in the nearby village of Lunac.

Bit of a contrast having to get up and prepare breakfast for guests as opposed to getting up out of a fabulous medieval bedroom...
 

and descending the fabulous well worn stone stairs to a stunning room where you are waited on.....



The views were amazing as the chateau sits high on the hill and this is the view that greeted me every morning when I opened the shutters....

Merci encore to the adorable Michel & Marie-Chantal, we really enjoyed our stay and hope to return later in the year.

Note the chateau is for sale should any of you  be looking to buy one.  You will find more details on the chateau here.

I am off to do some work but will be back later to share some photos of the magical village of Najac with you.....


à plus tard, Leeann x

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

a fabulous couple of days...



Bonjour mes belles,

We have just come back from spending a couple of days away and visited the fabulous village of  Saint-Cirq-Lapopie which is situated in the Lot department and is about an hour and half's drive from us. It is a member of the Les Plus Beaux Villages de France and really is a stunning village to visit as it is perched high on the hill and lot river flows below.


From here we then drove to our destination, which was a medieval chateau situated near the magical village of Najac.

Tomorrow I will share some photos of Najac and the chateau where we stayed....

Back to unpacking my suitcase I go, I do not like this part as it means that the vacance has well and truly come to an end.

à demain, Leeann x