Potatoes and cheese are beaten together with crème fraiche until they form silky, smooth ribbons of pureed potato. It’s a deliciously hearty recipe, and it’s tempting to eat it all by itself, in the dead of winter, for its sheer comfort value. Try to hold out, though, and accompany it with a rich steak for a luxurious meal. Once you do, it will be hard to go back to regular mashed potatoes.
French cuisine consists of cooking traditions and practices from France, famous for the rich tastes and subtle nuances with long and superior history. France, a country famous for its agriculture and independently minded peasants, was long a creative powerbase for delicious recepies, that are both healthy and refined.
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Alsatian cuisine, strongly based on Germanic culinary traditions, is marked by the use of pork in various forms. Traditional dishes include Baeckeoffe, flammekueche, Choucroute, and fleischnacka. Southern Alsace, also called the Sundgau, is characterised by carpe frite.
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A mix of sliced potatoes, sliced onions, cubed mutton, beef and pork which have been marinated overnight in Alsatian white wine and juniper berries and slow cooked in a sealed ceramic casserole dish. Leeks, thyme, parsley, garlic, carrots and marjoram are other commonly added ingredients for flavour and colour.
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Like Hollandaise sauce, there are several methods for the preparation of Béarnaise sauce. The most common preparation is a bain-marie method where a reduction of vinegar is used to acidify the yolks. Escoffier calls for a reduction of wine, vinegar, shallots, fresh chervil, fresh tarragon and crushed peppercorns (later strained out), with fresh tarragon and chervil to finish instead of lemon juice. Others are similar.
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The delicious combination of red cabbage and chestnuts is a common in France and goes well with pork chops or with pork sausages.
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In principle, there is no fixed recipe for this dish – any preparation of hot sauerkraut with meat and potatoes could qualify – but in practice there are certain traditions, favourite recipes, and stereotypical garnishes that are more easily called choucroute garnie than others.
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A mirepoix is a mixture of chopped celery (either common celery or celeriac), onions, and carrots. There are many variants, which may include just one of these ingredients, or include additional aromatics. Mirepoix, raw, roasted or sautéed with butter or olive oil, is the flavour base for a wide variety of dishes, such as stocks, soups, stews and sauces. The three ingredients are commonly referred to as aromatics.
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Baby beetroots served with walnuts, smooth blue cheese, a simple vinaigrette and some crusty bread, this salad makes a perfect little starter or side dish to any meal.
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It’s hard to find a French bistro menu that doesn’t serve up classic steak frites (or fries). Letting the steak rest after cooking keeps it juicy by allowing the juices to redistribute throughout the meat. Steak-frites, meaning steak and fries in French, is a very common and popular dish served in Brasseries throughout Europe. It is considered by some to be the national dish of Belgium and France, which both claim to be the places of its invention.
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