Tag Archives: salad

Those meals that feel like home – eggplant, red bell pepper and parmesan shavings “tartine”


“A yearning for the past, often in an idealized form” is the definition that wikipedia provides for the word “nostalgia”. For me, it is very much associated with tasting, smelling or preparing food.

Nostalgia tastes like an eggplant and red bell pepper spread on a slice of bred accompanied with a salty cheese and a salad.  A bite of that sunny melange and I think countryside, foggy mornings, jogging in our village, and sunflower fields.

For the eternal expatriate that I am, those kind of meals are more than just comfort foods, they represent constants in a childhood spent traveling from a place to an other, from a culture to an other. They made me feel at home no matter where we were and how far from our roots we had gone.

This dish can be served as an appetizer as well as the main course for lunch – you would just need to adjust the size of the slice of bread to your appetite. It is very easy to make, does not require any other tools than a frying pan, a knife and a cutting board. I served it with a salad – greens, steamed small potatoes, Kalamata olives – seasoned with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, fleur de sel and pepper.

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Zucchini and Goat cheese Millefeuille

As we can finally feel some warmth, fresh dishes start to become more appealing. My first step was to look inside our refrigerator searching for fruits and vegetables that shout “refreshing“. Fresh herbs, zucchini squash…how about something sweet and zesty to add to that, maybe a tad tangy too…yes, a green apple will do. Don’t forget le fromage (cheese), preferably fresh as well…and I was ready to let my imagination flow.

This is my process most of the time. I think of a mood, I think sensation, and then open my fridge for inspiration. Then I look at Loulou to confirm my intuition – always making sure that I choose something she might like, something healthy too. We are very fortunate to leave next to a great produce market and if the fridge is empty, the produce is at hand just steps away.

For this recipe you will need a few tools like aluminum rings and a mandolin. But once everything is on the table, the next steps go really fast.

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