French language and culture commentary from the U.S. capital

Cooking Fish in the Fall

Canapes a la Brandade de morue

With the summer quickly coming to an end and the fall swiftly approaching, I recently decided to embrace that atmosphere with my family by creating a French fall-themed dinner.

While I am not usually a big fan of anything fish, I decided to give these recipes a try. Why, you ask?

Fishing during the spring is generally ill-advised (or banned in modern times), due to the fact that it is reproduction season for most fish. As a result, when fall arrives and fisherman go out fishing, there is an increase in supply of fish, thus more meals that use it as a primary ingredient! Furthermore, these recipes call for onions. Though onions can be harvested year round, in order to get the biggest bulb possible (as was necessary in these recipes), they are gathered shortly after the leaves die. This generally occurs in late summer and early fall. The onions can then be braided using the dead leaves and stored until the end of winter in a cool dry area.

So, in the spirit of sharing, here is our menu. Hopefully it inspires you to try a dînier à la française yourself.

Menu:
Hors d’œuvre: Canapés à la brandade de morue
Plat principale: Pissaladière
Dessert: Palmiers au basil

 

These particular canapés à la brandade de morue are essentially pureed cod and onion, served between a baked potato slice on the bottom and a roasted pepper slice on the top. The smooth texture of the potato and pepper contrasts with the finely textured fish paste, giving it several layers of simple and sharp flavors..

Pissaladière is a sautéed onion pie, topped with anchovies and black olives. This seemingly simple recipe proved to be rather delicious with subtle, intricate tastes. When sautéed, the onion is slightly sweet, while the anchovies, on the other hand, are very salty and act like a spice to the dish.

The palmiers au basil are very similar to regular sweet palmiers, but rather than butter and sugar, a basil paste is inserted between the dough rolls, making it the perfect end to a fall dinner.

What about you? Have you attempted any new French foods recently?

Photos borrowed from:
Crumbly Cookies
La Boîte Gourmande

 

 

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About

Born in Bulgaria and raised all over the world, Iva grew up with the love of cultures. She appreciates everything food related and loves to travel.

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