Savory French Recipes That Are Perfect for the Winter November 18 2014, 0 Comments

While most people have a hard time dealing with winter - the cold weather, the bulky jackets and the snow, there are some people that actually don’t mind it because of the yummy dishes you get to eat. If you really want to enjoy this winter and the holiday season, be sure to check out some of the delicious French dishes below for some great ideas on what to make for your next dinner party.

Bouillabaisse
One of the more traditional French cuisine dishes known, the Bouillabaisse is a yummy soup filled with fresh fish such as Hake or Monkfish - which is known as Poor man’s lobster (any white fish will do), as well as shellfish like sea urchins or mussels and potatoes, tomatoes and fennel. It’s a very "simple" soup so to speak, but because of the delicious addition of fresh fish and shellfish alongside garlic, saffron and cayenne pepper, it’s alive with flavor and a really good dish to make on a cold day.

Fondues
There are many kinds of fondue. Almost everyone knows what fondue is and usually think first of the chocolate fondue with strawberries, marshmallows and pineapples. For a more traditional fondue, you might try the cheese fondue made of three cheeses, Gruyere, Beaufort and Comte (if you only can find two of them, it will work too) and white wine, slowly melted in a clay pot that as been flavored with shallots or garlic. Diced French bread is then dipped in the melted cheese and enjoyed. The third kind is the meat fondue; dices of meat or vegetables dipped in boiling oil. These are really great "sharing" dishes that makes it ideal for small and large parties or get togethers. You can also find mini fondue pots so that everyone can have their own fondue and choose what they want.

Coq au vin
Another amazingly traditional French dish, Coq au vin is not as hoity toity as it sounds and it’s quite delicious. Coq au vin is chicken that has been braised with red wine, mushrooms, lardons and usually garlic - though it is optional. You also add a bouquet garni to this dish which is what flavors the foundation of the dish and it includes the usually suspects such as salt and pepper, bay leaf, parsley and thyme.

Choucroute garnie
This is more or less a charcuterie dish that includes sauerkraut, fresh cut meats like pates, sausages and confit. Though sauerkraut is traditionally a German ingredient, in this case, it’s all French especially with the addition of the charcuterie. Ultimately you can add whatever meats, sausages and charcuterie that you want, just make sure everything is fresh. Visit your local butcher or grocery store chain to see if they offer any fine meats. You can also mix this up a little bit and add a variety of other ingredients such as juniper berries - capers, boiled potatoes, and cheeses.

Quiche Lorraine
Surprisingly, a lot of people think this is an Americanized dish; however quiches of all sorts are popular in French cuisine, even the Lorraine version. This is a delicious dish that is essentially a savory pie. It’s incredibly flavorful, and easy to make. It can feed a whole family pretty inexpensively. Quiche Lorraine includes really simple ingredients such as Swiss cheese, bacon, onions, and eggs. One of the main reasons this is such a flavorful dish is because of the foundation of the dish which includes sautéing Vidalia or white onions, salt and pepper in one pan and crisping up the bacon in another and then taking some of the grease from the bacon and adding it to the pan with the sautéing onions.

Tapenade
Another dish that is often mistaken as an Italian origin, Tapenade is made with really fresh ingredients like finely chopped capers, green and black olives, anchovies and olive oil. It’s incredibly good on crackers, but you can also serve it with crusty bread, inside or on freshly grilled chicken or fish or eat it with crudités. Some people even use it as a condiment like ketchup or mayonnaise on things like sandwiches and burgers.

About The Author:

Gilles Cailleaux is the Owner & Master Confectioner at By Gilles, an online French candy store based in Orange County, California. They sell traditional French confections called Calissons from Provence. Gilles is always ready to share his 25 years plus experience of candy making and baking with everyone and want to hear about your experience with his calissons. Gilles and his team are sensitive about taste and harmony. They prepare your packages with special care and attention.