January 11th, 2011

Risotto Carbonara?!

Flash back to a month ago when I made Rustico’s Truffled Couscous Carbonara, sans the truffles or truffle oil.  Ah, 2010: I remember it well…

So last night, following a weekend craving for something creamy and lardy, I decided I wanted to retry the recipe with risotto instead of couscous, and I have to say, it was a huge success.  Way way better than the couscous, which I definitely liked.  The risotto needed less cream than the couscous (don’t get me wrong, it’s still hugely unhealthy) and it was as flavorful as the original.  While he was hesitant to come out and say so, I got the impression that my carbonara-obsessed boyfriend preferred the risotto, too.

Just some food for thought!  I’m probably going to stick with the risotto version in the future.  Bon appétit!

December 6th, 2010

Couscous Carbonara

I’m pretty sure my boyfriend’s favorite dinner to make in our new French apartment is pasta alla carbonara.  He prepares it the easy French way, without eggs: whatever pasta we have in the cupboard, crème fraîche, cheese, lardon (little pieces of fatty ham), and maybe some herbes de Provence.  I’m pretty sure that if it were up to said boyfriend, we would eat pasta alla carbonara at least weekly.  Thanks to my dedication to spicing up our culinary life, though, I’ve reduced this number to monthly.

Last week, BF spent a week in the U.S. for work.  Despite eating Mexican food nearly every night – a major coup for a Mexican-food lover living in France – it seemed like a hard visit.  Jet lag, lots of new stress on top of existing stress…  When he came home, I wanted to surprise him with a special meal, a fancy take on his traditional favorite: Couscous Carbonara.

I got the recipe from the DCist (a local blog about Washington, D.C.) and its interview with Rustico chef Steve Mannino and knew right away that I had to try it.  It sounded rich and fatty and delicious – just the kind of comfort food I knew BF would appreciate.

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September 30th, 2010

Quiche Au Fromage

Unlike le croque monsieur, I have been making quiches since college.  They’re quick and easy and they have lots of room for improvisation when it comes to add-ins.  I typically follow the same recipe (made with mushrooms and spinach), whose origins are long forgotten.  A quiche is reliably tasty – a must-have in every culinary arsenal.

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September 29th, 2010

Croque Monsieur

As an American-in-France/honorary Frenchie, I thought it was absolutely necessary to make a croque monsieur immediately upon arriving in Lyon.  The “immediately” part proved more challenging that I had anticipated because, frankly, the Farenheit-Celsius conversion is harder than it sounds, our brand-new oven is super finicky, and we lacked (okay, still lack) many common modern-era cooking tools. Finally, though, last Tuesday, I made my first croque monsieurs.

The recipe for le croque monsieur, a French-style grilled ham and cheese, came from my fave, Ina Garten, and her book, Barefoot in Paris.

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