For the aperitif
Black tapenade, a Provencal recipe
Put in a mixing bowl :
- 250 g pitted black olives
- 1 clove of garlic, peeled and degermed
- 6 anchovy fillets in oil
- 3 teaspoons of drained capers in vinegar
Blend finely, adding 10 cl of olive oil in a stream until you obtain a soft paste.
Serve fresh on small toasts, or on slices of cucumber or zucchini
Sautéed chicken with « chasseur » sauce (Serves 6)
- 1,5kg chicken, cut into pieces, salt, pepper
- 150 gr flour
- 80-100 gr butter and a tablespoon of oil
For the sauce:
- 15 cl of white wine
- 375 g mushrooms
- 60 g finely chopped shallots
- 2 tablespoons of tomato paste to color the sauce
- Herbs: chervil, tarragon and parsley
The chicken. Flour the chicken, add salt and pepper. Heat the fat in a casserole dish. Brown the pieces on all sides. When they are well browned, let them cook for 30 minutes on low heat. If it seems too dry, add a little white wine.
While the chicken is simmering gently, wash and slice the mushrooms, peel the shallots and chop the herbs. Keep a little parsley aside to decorate the final dish.
After 30 minutes of cooking the chicken, add the sliced mushrooms and shallots. Cook for another 15 minutes, the juice from the mushrooms must be evaporated. Put the chicken in the hot serving dish and prepare the sauce.
The sauce. In the casserole add the white wine, the tomato paste. Mix well to recover the juices, let simmer to obtain a nice sauce. At the last moment, add the chopped herbs: tarragon, chervil, and a little parsley at the end. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Add a little parsley to make it look pretty.
Serve with white rice Recommended wine: a light wine (a rosé from Provence or a light red from Beaujolais).
Pavlova. Serves 6
An easy dessert to prepare the day before the party and to garnish at the last minute. It can be adapted to all seasons: just choose the fruits of the moment. The colour mixtures that stand out nicely on the meringue and the light-coloured cream are always a beautiful effect. It is the contrast of textures, the sweetness of the meringue and the acidity of the fruit that makes it so charming. With the remaining egg yolks, prepare a custard for another meal.
- 6 egg whites at room temperature
- 1 pinch of salt
- 330 g of caster sugar
- 4 teaspoons of cornstarch
- 1.5 tablespoon of white vinegar
- 60 cl of very cold liquid cream (not low fat)
- 600 g of red fruits (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, washed and dried) or other colored fruits (bananas, tangerines, peaches, kiwis, grapes…)
The meringue to prepare the day before
Preheat the oven to 220°C. Butter and sprinkle the baking sheet with cornstarch. Alternatively, cover the baking sheet with a sheet of baking paper that you have fixed with a few drops of water under the sheet. Preferably use a double boiler to make the meringue: place the container over a large pan of simmering water. Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt at low speed, then medium speed, adding the sugar little by little to obtain a firm, glossy mixture. Slowly add the sifted cornstarch, then the white vinegar. Lower the oven to 125°. Pour the mixture onto the baking sheet, forming a 6 cm high circle with a hollow in the center, where to put the fruit later! Bake for 1h15-1h45. Let it cool.
Just before the meal
Lightly whip the cold liquid cream in a cold bowl (low then medium speed) for 5 to 10 minutes. Just before serving, pour the whipped cream over the meringue and garnish with the fruit.
Enjoy your meal!