Lately…

Food Creations

I haven’t made any recipes that are too involved in the past few weeks, but I have a few things that I want to share!

Sandwich with Brie and Cornichons
inspired by a boulangerie near the Sorbonne

On a baguette or panini bread, place a few slices of chorizo or salami, brie cheese, and cornichons (pickles). Grill in a pan with a heavy pot or pan on top (or a panini maker if you are so lucky) and eat! The combination sounds weird but it works – salty, creamy, and crunchy all at once!

Broccoli with Lemon, Parmesan, and Black Pepper

I have been using a new healthy-eating technique that has been working really well to keep me eating lots of veggies! I chop up a vegetable and put it in a tupperware, and then for the few days after I have no excuse not to use it since it is already prepared. Broccoli works well because it doesn’t go bad very quickly, but I’ve also done it with cauliflower, cucumbers, bell peppers, and onions.

Little trees dusted with snow

Here is how I do it in my small “kitchen:” Place bite-size pieces of broccoli in a bowl with an inch or two of water, put a plate or paper towel on top, and microwave for 30 second intervals, testing with a fork until it’s as soft as you want it. (Usually for me it’s 45 seconds, but it depends on your microwave and how crunchy you want it to be.) After it’s cooked to your liking, drain the water out. Then squeeze lemon juice over it, put a few spoonfuls of grated Parmesan cheese, and a twist or two of black pepper.

It’s really flavorful and quick to prepare. Eat it right away because it gets cold fast and there’s nothing worse than cold broccoli. Next I am going to try adding in zucchini!

Tomato and Basil Salad

With a simple vinaigrette, this has been a great lunch along with bread and cheese. It’s a great light lunch when it’s too hot to cook or eat hot food (such nice weather this week!).

Simple and delicious!

Herb Butter

I saw a bunch of herbs at a store near me for only 1.50eu per bunch! I couldn’t resist so I got basil and cilantro. They have started to wilt before I could use them all, so I finally made herb butter, something I see on blogs all the time but haven’t gotten around to trying. This is now going to be my go-to recipe to use up herbs that are on their way out.

Simply use some good butter (I used this yummy salted butter, but you can use unsalted and add salt if you want) that is slightly softened. Chop up whatever combo of herbs you want (I used basil and cilantro; thought it would be weird but they work together!) and throw them into the butter. Mush together with the back of a spoon until the herbs are incorporated.

So easy, so fancy!

I would love to do this with cream cheese; in fact, I thought I was buying cream cheese but I actually bought margarine. (Just when I was getting confident in my ability to understand French, the dairy goods got me again! I don’t know if I will ever be able to navigate the extensive French dairy aisles…) Damn it! Anyone have a good use for margarine?

Anyways, I put my herb butter on toast. I bet it would be good with pasta, on some sort of roasted meat, baked onto chicken, on toasts for a party, need I continue?

Oranges and Mint

No picture here, because this was a dessert one night with the family I work for. Peel and slice oranges and then garnish with a little mint. If you are thinking – EW that sounds like when I brush my teeth and then drink orange juice – SHHT! It’s not! It’s refreshing and makes you forget the fact that you are eating just oranges for dessert! 🙂

Non-food stuff:

-Did you know I am kind of a freak? Well, I left a comment about my siren song on my favorite podcast, and I got a shoutout on this episode! I was happy I made Joy the Baker and Shutterbean laugh. 🙂 I was a little starstruck just listening to them say my name (well, my fake name “sweetmaddy”)!

What’s your siren song?

-This week, I went to Vertigo Productions, a recording studio located in Boulogne-Billancourt where I live, for a recording session. I, along with a group of six people from my choir, sang some small singing bits for the film Nous York. The recording engineers needed more voices to layer the sound in a few parts of the movie. There is a birthday scene, so we sang “Happy Birthday,” and we also sang the chorus of this song by Diam’s. In the film, the main actress (who showed up later to listen to us!) gets a group of the patients at an old folk’s home to perform the song with her. So, our voices will be used to round out the sounds of the group of old people singing on stage with her. Hilarious!

The screen we watched the movie on with the lyrics sliding by below

My friend Sophia and I – so excited to become superstars!

-Speaking of my choir, we have a concert coming up! I am very excited for this one. Not only do I love all three pieces we are performing, but I have a solo! I love most music, but it’s rare that I am STOKED to sing everything on the program, and I am SO stoked. I dork out every week and really enjoyed practicing and rehearsing every minute of this music. So, if you or anyone you know will be in Paris on June 8 or June 9, please stop by!

-I am still hammering out the details of what I will actually be doing next year, but I did buy my plane ticket back to California on July 5. I will be returning to Paris on September 3, so the adventure will continue!

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