Vive le French…food that is sexy but not exotic, light but full of flavour and the epitome of love on a plate.
With Bastille Day just around the corner on July 14, we’ve put together three recipes to celebrate all things French and wow the one you love with a gastronomic offering, that is sure to have them saying ‘je t’aime.’
Romancing diners with classic French charm, LoLuk Bistro on Bourke Street in Surry Hills is a destination-worthy diner, serving dishes inspired by the south of France and family recipes. From their menu comes this dish of double cheese souffle, mushroom cream and salad – an ideal starter to a French feast.
Souffle should have a subtle egg flavour and the texture of eating a cloud that melts in your mouth, with a moist almost under-cooked centre. This recipe uses Parmesan and raclette, but feel free to experiment with your favourite cheese; while the mushroom sauce is an indulgent addition for a contemporary twist.
No one epitomises French cooking in Australia more than everyone’s favourite Frog Manu Feildel…his smooth accent, good looks and charming manner have made him a household name and larger than life character on our TV screens.
Manu’s beef cheek bourguignon takes a little time and ideally should be started the day before you want to serve it, but the resulting flavours can’t be denied, accompanied by a glass of robust red on a cold Winter’s night.
"I love to use beef cheek in this classic dish as this gorgeous, rich cut is just perfect for braising,” Manu says. "You’ll need to start this dish the day before you wish to serve it, as the meat marinates overnight.
"Splash out and buy a good-quality red wine to use here – a cheap ‘cooking’ wine changes the flavour completely and the dish truly suffers. Just make sure you buy an extra bottle to drink with it!”
A clafoutis is a traditional French dessert in which fresh fruit – usually cherries - are baked in a batter. It is rather like a fruit flan without the pastry and is usually served piping hot, dusted with icing sugar.
This recipe uses cognac or kirsch liqueur for an extra kick, but if you are still looking to seal the meal deal with a boozy finale, check out Manu’s espresso martini spiced buttered rum coffee – guaranteed to keep the flames of love burning into the night!