Thursday, July 06, 2006

Lavender Lorraine

I've been away in Nantes with the boys. Boy2 has a heart murmur that must be monitered every few years (it's still there but it's really little and he's fine) so we take him to the University of Nantes Hospital where they have a pediatric cardiologist. While I was there, I enjoyed a lovely lunch with Husband's parents.

It was wednesday, just a regular day. My father-in-law comes home for lunch everyday so he was there with us. While I was at the hospital with Boy2, my mother-in-law went with Boy1 to the open air market to get items for lunch.

L'entrée was radishes with baguette and salted butter and fresh crab with homemade mayonnaise.

Le plat principal was rabbit with green olives and tomato cream sauce. Served with splet wide noodles and green beans.

Le dessert was strawberries and chouquettes (like a cream puff but without the cream and topped with rock sugar).

Le boisson was water for all. (I had to drive home and father-in-law had to work.) Flat bottled water for everyone except me. I had Eau de Perrier, which is made like regular Perrier except that it comes in pretty blue 1 litre bottles and the bubbles are less aggressive.

After lunch I looked at a few magazines. My mother-in-law has excellent taste in magazines. And in one of them I found the following recipe for Lorraine. (Here's the thing over on the right.)

Crème brûlée à la lavande

Serves 4

150 grams whole cream
5 centilitres whole milk
2 egg yolks
30 grams sugar
1 pinch of lavender flowers
1/3 vanilla bean
20 grams light brown sugar (cassonade), but not the moist kind, it has to be grainy, or if not just use white sugar

Slice vanilla bean in half, lengthwise, and scrape out interior. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 130° C (250° F).

Beat the yolks with the sugar until light. Add whole cream, milk, lavender, and vanilla pulp.

Pour into 4 oven-proof ramequins.

Cook 30 - 40 minutes in a bain-marie if it's a traditional oven. The bain-marie is not necessary if the oven has air pulsé. I have no idea what this means, but then again, I don't have a Viking.

Remove to refigerator to cool.

Just before serving, sprinkle with cassonade. Caramelize sugar with a crème brûlée iron, blow torch, or in oven like you would for a lemon meringue pie.

Ok, clearly, I'll never make it as a translator. But you get the main idea.


charlie said...

Our youngest, Adam, had a similar heart murmur when young, Nicole, and went through routine check ups. Gradually the thing sorted itself out of its own accord and he has lived a perfectly normal, healthy life and is therefore a perfect pest.

beth said...

How do you stay so thin living in France and eating all of those wonderful desserts?
Hope Boys2 is feeling fine. I hear that childhood issues such as his is quite common and they most likely grow out of them.

zeb said...

Send me an email on my boy's doctor update.

Maybe you can be the Martha Stewart of France

Eric said...

Air Pulse is Convection and yes we have one by my experience with Custards is to use the bain marie anyway.
Yummy but in Metric.

Lorraine said...

Yum. Can't wait to try it. Also, yum, radishes and butter and baguettes. Third yum, rabbit and sauce & noodles...first thing I ate in France and still a fine memory. (Including how much all the little bones bugged me. But still...yum).

Nicole said...

Charlie - Boy2 is already a perfect pest so I'm not sure how things are going to turn out.

Beth - I'm not thin. Particularly less so since Zeb and Denise's visit and 2 boxes of See's.

Zeb - I would LOVE to be the Martha of France.

Eric - Come on Eric, I KNOW you could whip up a automatic converter thing in no time.

Lorraine - Those little bones are why I never make rabbit. Which is actually why Therese makes it often when we visit. She knows how much I enjoy it but also that I never cook it.