culinary nostalgia

January 21st, 2013


girl preserving doll in glass jar

girl preserving doll in glass jar

















culinary nostalgia and reliving the season:
preserving lemons 

 When I was small, my father sang to me the song “Time in a Bottle.” It was a 1970‘s hit by Jim Croce lamenting about preserving the days with a loved one. He wanted to capture the soon-to-be lost time in a bottle. Humans like things to stay as they are and when the moments are gone, we like to fondly think about the way things were. We are nostalgic. I thought of this song this week (which I will explain later) but the concept of preserving the moment naturally made me think of preserving food. Culinary nostalgia. This thought inspired this week’s simple pleasure: preserved Meyer lemons.


Meyer Lemons in glass jar

Read the rest of this entry »

preserved Meyer lemons

January 21st, 2013

close up shot of Meyer lemon with salt and a glass jar ready to be preserved 

preserved Meyer lemons



makes 1 large Le Parfait jar (34 ounces)fresh lemons on a wood table



what you need:

10-12 Meyer lemons
~½ cup kosher salt
fresh lemon juice (as needed)
1-2 bay leafs 
10 black peppercorns
French thyme or lavender (optional) 
1-2 tablespoons olive oil


Read the rest of this entry »

chocolate holiday tree (sapin de Noël au chocolat)

December 6th, 2012

chocolate christmas tree

chocolate holiday tree 
(sapin de Noël au chocolat)

 makes one 1 tree

what you need:

1 pound bittersweet chocolate (or milk chocolate)
4 cups cereal (corn flakes or puffed rice) 
~ 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted (as needed)
powdered sugar (as needed) Read the rest of this entry »

rice and coconut milk smoothies

May 7th, 2012


coconut mango smoothie by chef morgan with garnish of flowers


rice and coconut milk smoothie

makes 24 ounces (4 6 ounce servings)

what you need:

½ cup aborrio rice 
1 cup water
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1  cup (unsweetened) coconut milk
1 cup crushed ice
5 ounces chopped fruit (strawberries, mango, bananas, or pineapple or a combination)

fresh fruit (as needed for garnish)
fresh pineapple mint leaves (as needed for garnish)
fresh edible flowers (as needed for garnish)

how to: 

  • Cook Rice. Place rice and water in a saucepan over medium-high flame. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer until cooked. If the water is almost gone, but the rice is not cooked, turn off the flame and place the lid on the saucepan. The carryover heat will finish cooking the rice. Let the rice cool slightly.
  • Purée. Place the rice, sugar, coconut milk, and fresh fruit in a blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until very smooth and the rice is completely puréed.  If you prefer, you can use the fruit as a garnish rather than a primary ingredient in the smoothie. Either way, you can store in the refrigerator until you are ready to enjoy.
  • Add Ice.  Add ice and blend until smooth. 
  • Adjust Consistency. If smoothie is too thick (and you like the flavor), add a little more ice to thin. If it is too thick and you want to bump up the flavor, add a little more coconut milk (you can sweeten it a little with stevia, agave nectar or more brown sugar if necessary). 
  • Garnish. Add fresh fruit and/or fresh herbs/flowers in a beautiful way. 

More recipes for runners runner icon chef morgan

coconut mango smoothie by chef morgan

gâteau au yaourt (yogurt cake)

April 21st, 2012

A sweet cake for kids without too much sugar

vive le grignotage ! 
(long live snacking) 

tea time, goûter and “un peu sucré ou pas du tout”:
gâteau au yaourt (yogurt cake)

One day a friend and I were having tea. He works in the culinary television industry and like most Parisians, he is passionate about food and so our conversation revolved around food, of course. As he poured the tea, he shared with me a saying his grandmother had when she served tea. She would say, “une sucré ou pas du tout” (meaning, take one sugar or take nothing at all). Thinking of childrens’ fondness for sugar (and for snacking), his grandmother’s comment stuck with me and it inspired this week’s simple pleasure: gâteau au yaourt. Read the rest of this entry »

rabbit (or chicken) chasseur

April 1st, 2012

 Hunger games food - Katniss’s rabbit (or chicken) chasseur

Katniss’s rabbit (or chicken) chasseur

serves 4-6

what you need:

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 rabbit (jointed into two front legs, two hind legs, two halves of saddle)
3 pound broiler chicken (cut into 2 legs, 2 breasts, 2 thighs)

Read the rest of this entry »

roasted blackberries on a vanilla pod bow with vanilla seed ice cream and fresh violets

April 1st, 2012

Hunger Games Food  roasted blackberries on a vanilla bow  

 roasted blackberries on a vanilla pod bow with vanilla seed ice cream
and fresh violets for Gale


 serves 4

what you need:

3 cups firm blackberries
4 fresh vanilla pods (and/or 4 wooden skewers)
1 pint quality, real vanilla ice cream (or Greek yogurt)
organic fresh violets (as needed)
kitchen string (as needed) Read the rest of this entry »

a bouquet garni – detail with a difference

November 24th, 2010



a bouquet garni


Ce sont les petits choses qui font toute la différence (it is the little things that make all the difference).   In life and cooking the details matter.   A bouquet garni (a little gathering of herbs) is a detail that makes all the difference.

A bouquet garni imparts flavor to its surrounding and typically used in anything that simmers (i.e., braises, stocks, and soups).  A kitchen string keeps the herbs in a bundle and is usually tied to the handle of a stockpot (so when the garni has done its job, you grab the string and toss the bouquet).

Traditionally a bouquet garni is Italian parsley, thyme, and bay leaves wrapped inside a leek.  However, the combinations are endless (some chefs will wrap the herbs in a slice of bacon or add a piece of citrus peel).  A sachet is used like a bouquet garni but the herbs and spices (i.e., peppercorns, juniper berries) are placed inside a piece of muslin or cheesecloth.   Sachets are preferable if you are using dried herbs and small spices.  A bouquet garni (or sachet) should be small so not as to overwhelm the food, but create a subtle aroma.

This week’s simple pleasure is making a bouquet garni for use not only as a flavor enhancer but as a place-setting/party favor and a host gift.  The bouquets can be used fresh or when they dry out.  This project is easy to do.  Moreover, it adds a personal, fresh touch to your dinner (or a thoughtful host gift) and is something you can do with your children to incorporate them in preparing for the festivities.   Focusing on the detail of a few fresh herbs this Thanksgiving will impart more than flavor, it will impart smiles.

Je vous souhaite un bon appétit !



Read the rest of this entry »

making foccacia is child’s play (date foccacia video)

October 22nd, 2010

cookie dough is wonderful in all forms (date brown sugar cookies video)

October 22nd, 2010