How to make a French baguette

How to make a French stick

There’s little more evocative of France, more French in itself, than the baguette. The sight of people walking quickly home before breakfast, a still-warm baguette tucked firmly under their arm is a common one, such is the baguette’s place in French life. British-style white-sliced bread stands no chance in France. There’s tradition involved – no [...]

Food & drink

Tourte de boeuf parmentier

Serge Dansereau’s country-style beef and potato pie

This beef pie has a very British feel to it, despite its French origins. I was asked exactly what makes it French, and I must admit to struggling to find an answer. There’s some garlic in it, I suppose, and it has that general feel of traditional French cooking…simple, practical, thrifty and generous of flavour…but [...]

Food & drink

French Kitchen, Serge Dansereau

Serge Dansereau’s French Kitchen: Classic Recipes for Home Cooks

It’s easy to forget just how influential French cooking is, how it’s still widely regarded as the ‘mothership’ of cuisines, the place where all the best techniques, the best ideas, the best recipes come from. If I had to choose just one cuisine and eat it for evermore, it’d be French. That might sound treacherous [...]


Salt cod brandade

Salt cod brandade

Remember that salt cod I made the other week? Here’s what became of it. Brandade de morue or brandade de bacaloa, depending on if you’re French or Spanish is a simple emulsion of salt cod and olive oil, most often eaten with bread.  It’s common across France and Spain, and versions of it exist in [...]

Food & drink

The French Paradox

The Gascon Paradox

Last week, I made a dish of confit rabbit, coated in breadcrumbs and then deep fried. A couple of people made comments about the inherent unhealthiness of the meal. True, this was a meal of rabbit cooked in goose fat and then deep fried.  It had its fair share of calories, but it tasted unlike [...]

Food politics