Since her first book “French Women Don’t Get Fat” writings by Mireille Guiliano, former President and CEO of Veuve Clicquot champagne who made the leap from executive to lifestyle author and now, celebrity have graced my stacks of books being read.
For enthusiasts of all things Parisian and France, a read of her books is like coming home. Mireille is recognized by the French daily, Le Figaro as “an ambassador of France and its art of living,” and USA Today took it, further dubbing her further “the high priestess of French lady wisdom.” We agree and raise our champagne flute in a hearty “Salut!”.
Celebrating Eating Well
A terrific cookbook to compliment the series, further bringing the French food philosophies to life. Filled with delightful recipes and even more wisdom dripping from its pages, reading this book evoked from me a symphony of “ohh’s” and “awws” and sends food-loving hearts soaring, thoroughly stirring your inner French woman’s soul.
Somewhere it has been said that the truly classic cookbooks have no photographs in them. Why? Because photos are reputed to easily ‘date’ a cookbook as the decor, food presentation and style of photography over the years always changes. What doesn’t go out of style is a good, well written and quality recipe. If these are the hallmarks for a classic cookbook, the French Women Don’t Get Fat cookbook is poised to become a great classic. These are not your ordinary recipes. They are flavor-filled beauties with a short list of ingredients and short method, using readily available ingredients. The French know what makes a good recipe and that good food need not be complicated. This is why French peasant food rose to become highly revered. The book has recipes of depth, is lifestyle focused, shares wonderful stories, interesting flavor combinations (like adding wasabi, the Japanese horseradish, to a pear and date au gratin dessert!). There is a full range of recipes that will have you cooking and eating like a true gourmand! Recipes for lovely fresh week night meals, more formal dinner parties, snacks, lunches, brunches and things for the entire family that will broaden the palate of children.
A Highly Recommended Cookbook
The lovely tales from her dual life in Provence and New York read beautifully. A combination of good book with its wonderfully written words painting the most captivating images and what comes across like letters, filled with passages and wisdom received lovingly phrased, from a trusted adviser. What she has to share provides needed clarity in a sea of confusing messages on food and diet. Ageless wisdom for a good life and a good kitchen – things that both Mireille, myself and many other women the world know…cooking doesn’t have to be harried, stressful or hard, nor does life and good food is a part of a good life. Good food and cooking is a pleasure and meals are meant to be savored. Whether you are a food enthusiast, a newbie foodie or are looking for that must-have cookbook, this is one to get.
Serves 8 (makes one 9-inch tart)
- 1 recipe pate brisé (store bought or homemade) for a 9-inch tart
- 1/2 cup blanched almonds, finely ground
- 1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds fresh apricots, rinsed, cut in halves and pitted
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 3 tablespoons slivered almonds, lightly toasted
- Creme frâiche (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface roll the dough to an 11-inch round. Transfer to a 9-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Prick the dough lining the bottom of the pan with a fork. Cover and chill for 10 minutes. Place the tart in the oven and par-bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 375 degrees.
2. In a food processor, combine the blanched almonds and 1/4 cup sugar and pulse just until the almonds are finely ground. Spread the mixture evenly over the bottom of the tart. Place the apricot halves, cut side down, on top, slightly overlapping. Drizzle with honey, place in the oven, and bake for 40 minutes or until the crust is lightly browned.
3. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the slivered almonds and 2 teaspoons of sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature with slightly sweetened creme frâiche, if desired.
VARIATION: Other wonderful fruit tart options include peaches (or a mix of peaches and nectarines) with pistachio nuts instead of almonds, plums with lemon zest and cherries, or Italian plums with a dash of cinnamon.