*”You mean you made everything in this tiny kitchen!”…said one of my American guests as she helped me clear off the table. A small but fully packed kitchen doesn’t hinder us from cooking up some great meals. However, for our cooking classes we head over to our farm (a mile down the road) and use the large renovated kitchen in Bruno’s “Miller’s Cottage”.
**Our talented baker friend, Carlos Alves, who has a wonderful traditional French boulangerie et patisserie (l’Art du Pain) in the town of Saint Gaudens near the Spanish border…after bringing back to life several other old boulangeries in the south of France and creating one in Brazil.
He arrived here at La Forge laden with breads, brioche and “croustades”… needless to say our guests were as delighted as we to have a “bread tasting” for breakfast this morning.
***My pastry marble that always seems to fill up with more than pastry dough and a rolling pin ! The magnetic spice holders were found at a local supermarket.
Denise and Jean Pierre Moullé, former executive chef at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, have, as I’ve said before, the best culinary tour in France. They’ve been sharing their home, friends and family in the region around Bordeaux with Americans from New York to San Francisco for over 20 years. As most of their guests stay here at La Forge I get to spend the week with some of the most interesting people around my breakfast table. You might want to check out their web site: http://www.twobordelais.com/
This weeks tour was no exception as you can see from the photos.
Hands on cooking classes with their own chef in a private kitchen is often what our guests look forward to when they come to La Forge. Just down the road at our farm, Bruno’s kitchen in 14th Century water mill (Le Moulin) is the perfect place to get together to cook. After a visit to the market in Libourne the menu was all fish this time…except for the desert. A carpaccio of tuna and cod with a parmasan topping for the sarter, red mulet on a bed of garden vegetables with egg plant, cheese then rasberries in a mint cream desert on a shortbread cookie. Everyone went home with the recipes and proud of their newly learned techniques from a “pro”: Chef Philippe Delobel.
What better way to spend family time in France than cooking together under the instructions of a talented chef…who has worked in restaurants around the world and now during the school year teaches young future chefs in a professional lycéé.
Jo-Ann, the owner of Active Gourmet Holidays has been sending me guests to find out “What’s Cooking in France” for several years now. When they cook with my friend Stephane they always produces a bountiful table with an italian flair ! You’ll find some of this week’s cooking on the recipe page. Our chefs, Xavier and Philippe’s, recipes are there as well.
I was delighted to see my classified ad in the new Christian Science Monitor this week. Because I came to France 40 years ago due to a Monitor ad, I hopeful that this one will entice new guests to come to France as well !
I knew when I started this blog that I might not write every day…or even every week, but now it’s almost a month since D day, when I last wrote. Many guests have come and gone to my B&B at La Forge…I have more and more French guests through a wonderful web site http://www.guidesdecharme.com/
We had several cooking classes during the past month, with two wonderful cooks: Xavier Fages, a teacher at the restaurant and hotel lycée in Libourne, and Jean Pierre Moullé from Chez Panise in Berkely, CA and his group from http://www.twobordelais.com/
I’m going to use this blog to keep you up to date with what our cooks are doing as well. Take a look at our new recipe file !