Keep your guests happy with the mouthwatering canapes

Food is an important part of a party, as this is how you encourage your guests to relax and unwind. Finger food, and canapés, in particular, are a great form of food to serve as they taste fantastic and look just as great too. This is sure to impress your guests and keep them content throughout the event.

When arranging a large party or social event, there is a lot to organise. This can make it a particularly stressful and daunting prospect, especially if you have little to no experience in hosting such large events. The location, guest list, decorations, music, guest list, theme, dress code, drinks and food are just a few of the aspects that need arranging. One key element which is sometimes overlooked is food. If you do not supply your guests with a range of delicious food, then they will struggle to relax and feel content, which could result in most people leaving early. However, if you have a large spread of food it will help people to get into the mood, feel content and it can even work as a fantastic conversation starter and get people to mingle.

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There are hundreds of different types of canapés that you could serve, including hot and cold canapés, as well as sweet canapés. As there are so many different bases, garnishes and toppings, it should see suffice everybody’s wants. Creating this many canapés for a large group is a daunting prospect, which is why it is best to use the services of professional catering companies. This way, you can get a huge range of delicious and beautifully presented canapés delivered to the location with plenty of time to spare. You can then just serve this up and focus on other aspects of the party. As they will both taste and look fantastic, it is sure to impress your guests and help your party to be a complete success.

Food is an essential ingredient for any successful party. Finger food is the best type to serve as it encourages people to mingle while they eat, and canapés are a fantastic and elegant form of finger food to serve.

a bientot on my blog

Chef Bertrand Munier

bertrand munier

 

 

 

 

La Galette des rois .. a French treats

La Galette des Rois, traditional recipe .

Traditionally, the galette des Rois is made to celebrate Epiphany, which falls on the 6th of January, twelve days after Christmas. The cake is eaten in celebration of the arrival of the three kings who have travelled from afar with gifts for the newborn baby. In practice, people eat this galette throughout January and, dare I say, it is a rather unreligious event for most.

A dried bean, known as la fève, is hidden in the cake, and whoever receives the bean in his piece of cake, is crowned king or queen for the duration of the party. Other popular traditions, include having the youngest member of the gathering sit under the table and designate to whom each piece of cake should be served.\

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Baking time: 30 min

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup ground almonds
  • 2 eggs + 1 egg for painting
  • 1 tablespoon rum (optional)
  • 1 pound puff pastry (2 rounds)
  • 1 large dry bean or fève figurine

To make the frangipane, blend the butter with the sugar until well combined. Blend in the almonds thoroughly. Beat in the 2 eggs one at a time and then the rum if you are using it.

In a small bowl, beat the remaining egg.

Roll out half of the puff pastry into a round about 12 inches in diameter. Place it on a wax paper lined baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, paint the outer 1 1/2 inch circumference of the pastry with beaten egg.

Spread the frangipane in a round in the center of the pastry so that it just meets the painted on egg. Press the bean into the frangipane somewhere close to the outer edge.

Place the other puff pastry (rolled out into an equally sized round) on top of the first. Use the times of a fork to press the edges closed. Brush the top of the galette with the beaten egg.

Use a paring knife to etch a pretty pattern into the top of the galette. Traditionally this is in a cross-hatch pattern, or concentric half circles, but you can make up your own pattern if you are feeling creative. Don’t cut through the pastry, just etch.

Cut a small hole in the center of the pastry to allow steam to escape. Place the galette in the refrigerator to cool for at least 30 minutes before baking. You can make it a day in advance as well – just be sure to keep it refrigerated.

Preheat the oven to 200°F. Place the refrigerated galette in the center of the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is dark golden brown. Serve warm.

Makes 8 servings.

Bertrand

The french Christmas Logs ” la Buche de Noël”

Recipe Story
The Bûche de Noël, also known as the Yule Log, is a traditional French dessert served during the Christmas holidays. Made from sponge cake; this rolled cake can be filled and frosted with everything from butter cream to rich chocolate ganache. The cake is decorated to resemble a log by creating a bark-like texture with the outer frosting, sprinkling powdered sugar to resemble “snow”, and crafting “mushrooms” out of meringue or marzipan as a final garnish. It’s no wonder this beautiful (and delicious!) cake has been around since Napoleon I!!! Enjoy and Merry Christmas everyone from Bertrand Munier

Ingredients
What You Will Need
1/2 cup cake flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks
3/4 cup granulated sugar
Pinch of salt

nstructions
Preparing the Plain or White Génoise

1. Cover the cooled layer with a clean piece of parchment paper, and then
cover the paper with a clean sheet pan
2. Whisk the eggs, yolks and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add
sugar in a stream while whisking
3. Place bowl over a pan of simmering water and gently whisk until the
egg mixture is lukewarm. Whip by machine on high speed until the egg
mixture is cold, light yellow in color and increased in volume. Remove
the bowl from the mixer and sift the cake flour mixture over the egg
mixture, in a few additions, and fold in with a rubber spatula
4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top evenly with
a spatula
5. Bake the layer for 10-12 minutes. Be careful NOT TO OVER BAKE!!
6. Loosen the cake with a sharp knife from the sides of the pan and invert
to a rack; immediately invert again so that the cake layer cools on clean
paper right-side up

For Chocolate Génoise
Substitute 1/3 cup cake flour, 1/3 cup cornstarch, 1/4 cup unsweetened
cocoa powder, and a pinch of baking soda for the dry ingredients used in
the plain génoise. Continue to use 1/4 granulated sugar, 3 large eggs
and 3 large egg yolks, and a pinch of salt.

Preparing the Cake
1. Cover the cooled layer with a clean piece of parchment paper, and then
cover the paper with a clean sheet pan
2. Invert the cake between the pans
3. Lift off the top pan, and peel off the paper stuck to the bottom of the
cake layer
4. Replace the just removed parchment with a clean piece of paper
covering the cake, and place a sheet pan on top of it
5. Invert the pans again; remove the top pan, and parchment paper. The
cake layer now rests on a clean piece of parchment
Assembling the Bûche
1. Spread the filling of your choice (flavored whipped cream, butter
cream, ganache) on the layer with a metal spatula
2. With the long edge of the layer closest to you, roll the layer by picking
up the edge of the paper and easing the layer into a curve
3. Continue to use the paper to roll the layer into a tight cylinder
4. Wrap the paper tightly around the roll, and twist the ends like a piece
of wrapped candy
5. Refrigerate for 2 hours (1 hour in the freezer) so cake can “set”
6. Remove the rolled cake from the refrigerator and unwrap
7. Trim the edges diagonally, cutting one piece to be 2 inches in length
from the end of the log
8. Place the roll on a platter, and position the uncut end of the 2 inch
piece about two thirds along the top side of the roll, making a short
“branch” or “knot”
9. Cover the bûche with butter cream, ganache, or whipped cream
(whipped cream is not the usual choice for the outer covering), making
sure to cover the curve up the protruding branch on top of the log
10. Leave the branch ends unfrosted, or frost one of the two ends. Always
leave the protruding branch end unfrosted

11. “Streak” the butter cream with a fork or decorating comb
12. Dust plate sparingly with confectioners’ sugar to have “snow”
13. Cut diagonal slices to serve
14. ENJOY!
Bertrand Munier

10 reasons why Lyon is the capital of gastronomy

Find out why Lyon has been known as the world’s food capital for some 80 years with these top 10 facts on Lyon’s gastronomy.

Not only is Lyon amazingly beautiful but for some 80 years Lyon has also been recognised as the food capital of France and the world. In 1935, famed French food critic Curnonsky, dubbed the Prince of Gastronomy, described the city of Lyon as the ‘world capital of gastronomy’. If you ever find yourself in Lyon, you are obliged to test, try and enjoy the food, and you’ll truly learn about the origins of a common passion in France – a love of French food.

Lyon is the ideal place to discover French cuisine and to fall in love with it. With more than 1,500 eateries, Lyon city has one of the highest concentrations of restaurants per capita in France. In the 21st century, Lyon’s simple and high-quality cuisine has been exported to other parts of France and abroad.

Lyon is an amazing place: a big, modern and historical city. It’s full of authentic French people who have their own way of communicating but are lovely, funny and chatty, adding to the city’s charm. But instead of praising Lyon for its beauty and importance as a French city, here are 10 reasons why it’s renown as the capital of gastronomy.

Top 10 reasons why Lyon is the world’s capital of gastronomy

1. Because of its location

Lyon is surrounded by some of the finest raw materials in France and has become the hub for a variety of ingredients and top quality regional products. Summer vegetables come from farms in Charolais, lake fish from Savoy, game from the Dombes, the best pork from Monts du Lyonnais, and spring fruits and vegetables from Drôme and Ardèche. Plus you can get quality wines in Beaujolais and the Rhone Valley, not to mention the array of local cheeses. And the ‘royalty’ of chickens come from Bresse, and of course Bresse gave origin to the tasty Bresse Bleu fromage! Could you really ask for more?

2. Because of the famous Les Halles de Lyon

This is a renknown, prestigious indoor market which was created in 1971, and renovated and renamed in honour of top French chef Paul Bocuse in 2006. It can be expensive but if you are looking for the best regional products listed above or simply want to eat lunch or dinner, you will find what you need here. It is also worth visiting Les Halles de Lyon because Mr Bocuse can sometimes be seen chatting to traders and his suppliers. It’s easily accessible in central Lyon next to Part Dieu – another place you need to visit.

3. Because of the outdoor markets

Lyon is well known for its plentiful markets, which are a great alternative to Les Halle de Lyon. They are where savvy people can find very good quality regional products at a bon price. One of the best is on Boulevard de la Croix-Rousse. Situated on a steep hill, the market offers not only the very freshest regional products but also amazing views. Another popular market is Saint Antoine Farmers Market, which is open every day except Monday and farmers set up their market tables along the banks of the Saône River. It’s a great authentic way to discover how French people value food and see the Lyon art of selling cheese, wine, and saucisson.

4. Because of Lyonnaise specialities

It’s hard to begin as there are so many Lyonnaise specialities in each area. Lyon is all about rustic, rich French food, and is famous for a number of unique meals: think about a smoky pork sausage with pistachios served on a dollap of mashed potatoes with a cream sauce, or a brochette of foie gras, or a colourful macaron, and obviously the well-known to all, quenelles, typically a mixture of creamed fish (image below). Then there are the very typical Lyonnaise saucissons and its varieties. When it comes to cheese, Lyon offers the St-Marcellin and St-Félicien varieties from nearby Isère. I don’t even want to start on desserts as there are so many tasty things, but to name a few Lyon has their famous Les bugnes, Coussin de Lyon, Tarte Praline and Christmas papillotes.

Lyon's specialty foods

5. Because Lyon has been home to many top chefs

Lyon has always been an attractive place for chefs to settle and develop their skills, not least for the ‘mothers of Lyon’ who were the iconic women behind the creation of Lyon’s bouchons (traditional restaurants) and the city’s culinary reputation. It started with Mère Fillioux, who opened her own bistro and was the first ‘mother’ to gain a wide reputation, and later taught the craft to the even more famous Mère Brazier, the very teacher of our great Bocuse. This pattern has continued, and nowadays there are the famous Georges Blanc, Mathieu Viannay, Christian Têtedoie, Lacombe and Orsi, to name just a few, who still hold the banner high for French gastronomy. Lyon also attracts many creative young spirits, such as Sébastien Bouillet, or rising stars, such as Le Bec, Viannay, and Ezgulian. Increasingly there are more and more chefs appearing in Lyon, learning crafts from the best restaurants and the local schools such as the L’Institut Paul Bocuse and L’École Vatel. They offer training in hospitality, food service and culinary skills, and the apprentiships you can do in Lyon’s top restaurants provide some the best culinary experience one can gain.

Great Chefs in Lyon

6. Because Lyon has bouchons

A bouchon is a unique type of restuaurant that is only found in Lyon. They are a part of Lyonnaise history and are usually small, family-owned bistros that serve a specific type of cuisine, have a specific atmosphere, as well as a typical decor. According to one French language school, the word buchon didn’t exist in any other French town. They serve really heavy, homemade foods, stemming from the recipes the mothers of Lyons served to the silk workers.

Top French food

7. Because Lyon maintains its rich culinary traditions

On top of well-known Lyonnaise culinary traditions such as bouchons and Meres de Lyon (mothers of Lyon) recipes, Lyon also supports and continues the city’s great tradition of mâchon. Does it sound mysterious? Mâchon is a type of meal served in the morning (before lunchtime) but it is a heavy meal. It can start with pate, followed by a meaty main course topped with a sauce, and finished off with some cheese. The tradition of mâchon comes directly from the canutes – the silk weavers of the Croix-Rousse were coming back from night shifts hungry and they stopped by the local bars to share a meal. Nowadays, there is even a philanthropic organisation in Lyon for the encouragement and knowledge of mâchon called Franc Machons, which has awarded honorary diplomas to about 50 institutions that entitles them to organise and serve those meals. An example includes Chez les Gones restaurant, which starts serving from 9am a three-course meal that usually includes pâté, followed by andouillette with mustard sauce and cheese to finish, accompanied by a glass of Côtes du Rhône.

Lyon Paul Bocuse8. Because of the Pope of French Cuisine

You have probably already heard about the renown French chef Mr Bocuse, who has been dubbed the Pope of French cuisine. He is an exceptional chef who introduced Lyon to the whole and the world to nouvelle cuisine. It is a style of cooking that is characterised by lighter, delicate dishes and an increased focus on the presentation of the food. You could say he broke the rules of the Lyonnaise bouchons (very heavy meals) – and succeeded.


9. Because of the quality and number of top restaurants, boulangeries, patisseries and chocolatiers

More than 1,500 good restaurants, 13 awarded the prestigious Michelin Stars, and the highest numbers of restaurants per inhabitant in France – there’s no shortage of culinary establishments in this gastronomic centre of experimentation and innovation. Besides that, there are many authentic places to eat, such as century-old brasseries or the traditional bouchons (traditional Lyonnaise restaurants); a good example is the often full Bouchon des Filles, where you won’t get a menu but the owner will tell you what they serve. Outside of the restaurant scence are more Lyonnaise food gems – the dedicated charcuteries, fromageries, chocolatiers, boulangeries, vienniesseniers, cremeries and more. Some recommendations include the charcuteries Bonnardand Sabilia, the fromagerie Galland (Croix-Rousse), the tasty boulangerie/patisserie Jocteur, the chocolatierBernachon, and for eggs, La Crèmerie Lyonnaise.

10. Because Lyon has Sirha

Sirha was founded in Lyon in 1983 and is the biggest professional and international trade fair dedicated to food service and hospitality. Since then, Lyon has been responsible for gathering together the best in the gastronomy industy, thus SHIRA has become important for networking and discovering new trends – and a great event for the public to taste-test new foods. There are 17 professional competitions during Sirha, including the very prestigious international ones like Bocuse d’Or and Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie.

Now you will likely be tempted to come and experience some of France’s best cuisine. Bon appetite!

Shopaholic from home / Expatica

Aga had never spoken French nor been to France until she moved to Lyon. She is a Pole who now spends her free time with her ears and eyes wide open, observing cultural traits, soaking in customs and writing about them on her blog. She also loves shopping – online shopping, window shopping, all forms of shopping! You’ll find her on J’adore Lyon.

Photo credits: Fryke27 (quenelle), Alain Elorza (Paul Bocuse), Jacques Lameloise/Arnaud 25 (thumbnail).

article from http://www.expatica.com/fr/out-and-about/Top-10-reasons-why-Lyon-the-capital-of-gastronomy_476910.html

thank you for reading

Bertrand Munier 

 

Be the perfect Host by getting the best Dinner party caterers in london

If you are hosting an event whether it is a party or conference, you will want your guests to have the best experience. You can make sure this is exactly what they get by hiring dinner party caterers who will ensure that everybody gets something delicious to eat.

IMG_4978

There is no better way than to treat your guests when you are hosting an event than with delicious canapes. These are the perfect addition to any evening as guests can have as few or many as they like without you needing to worry about serving a full dinner. Having delicious and carefully prepared canapes  can make the world of difference for your event.

Canapes come in many shapes and sizes, such as cold canapes, hot canapes, sweet canapes or shot glass canapes. You can tailor your menu to your tastes and the type of event you want to host, whether evening or daytime, formal or informal.

To ensure you pull off your party with panache, dinner party caterers in London can help you out. These companies can offer a bespoke service which fits your needs and leaves your guests happy and impressed.
Whether you want mini eclairs and other delightful small versions of well known desserts, or something different with shot glasses of salmon mousse and more, you can have it all. By serving canapes London you will leave your guests’ taste buds tingling. Make sure you arrange your caterers today to ensure your big party goes off without a hitch.

 

Thanks

Bertrand Munier
bertrand munier Ideal party

This is soon the Season to make your own Quinces Jelly …

  • Quinces  are rather odd fruit; they look half-way between an apple and a pear, they are not good to eat off the tree, they are quite hard, they are loaded with pectin (a natural jelling agent), and they make the most lovely rose-colored jelly.
    IMG_3750
  • Wash the quinces, scourer off the down, and then quarter them roughly. Put the cut up quince into a preserving pan with the water and simmer long and slowly until they become soft. It can take over an hour to reduce well.
  • IMG_3752
    Strain through a jelly bag overnight (by jelly bag, I mean a tea towel or very fine sieve – whatever you have at your disposal that fits within that criteria will be fine). Do not force the juice, as it will make it cloudy.
  • IMG_3753
  • Measure the juice into the preserving pan, and for each 600 mls of juice add 375g caster sugar. Bring juice to simmering point, add the sugar and the strained lemon juice. Dissolve over a very low heat. Boil fast and begin testing for a set after 10 minutes. When soft set is reached, pour into small, sterislised, hot jars and seal.
  • IMG_3756
    This jelly stiffens during storage, and looks like a ruby jewel in the jar. It is delicious is served with lamb or boiled or baked pork, or simply as jelly with toast and butter for breakfast.

Thank you enjoy

Bertrand www.bertrandmunier.co.uk 

  • imgres-1IMG_3760

The best hot canapes ! Gougères recipe from Burgundy

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Whether you are going to a Michelin star restaurant or at a friend’s house in France, you will most likely be served gougères canapes to accompany your aperitif drinks (drinks served before a meal). Gougères are traditional cheese puffs made with either Emmenthal or Comté cheese. These little canapes luxuries are perfect with champagne or wine (they are often served during wine-tastings) – and so chic if you have them home-made. Originally from Burgundy, these puffs were invented in the 17th century in a patisserie called ‘Le ramequin de Bourgogne’. So next time you have guests, why don’t you dazzle them with these golden puffs.

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Ingredients (makes about 40)

250 ml/ 1 cup water

100 g/ 3.5 ounce salted butter

150 g/ 1 1/4 cups plain flour

180 g/ 2 cups grated Emmenthal or Gruyère cheese

4 eggs

A dash of ground nutmeg

1 egg yolk for glazing

A dash of salt and pepper

Pre-heat the over 180°

In a saucepan, bring the water and butter to a boil. Add the flour, stirring very fast and take immediately off the 6880354b233b989968432d063bf6700dheat. By now the batter will be roughly in the form of a soft ball. Add the eggs, one by one and stir. It’s important to add the eggs slowly – don’t worry if it looks too thick, just continue to stir as it will eventually become a smooth batter. Finally add the cheese, salt & pepper and stir to a good dewy batter.

Prepare a baking tray line with parchment paper. You have two choices for preparing the gougères: either put the dough in a pastry bag with a standard tip and pipe walnut sized mounds, or spoon and shape with the help of two teaspoons and evenly shaped ball (again like the size of a walnut). Glaze with the egg yolk for a golden baked finish. Sprinkle the puffs lightly with grated cheese.

Leave an adequate space between each gougères and bake for 25 minutes approx or until puffy and golden. Serve immediately.

ps: You can prepare these in advance and either refrigerate or freeze them. Just take them out again before serving and heat in a high-heat oven for 5-7 minutes.

bon appétit

Bertrand Munier

I’m Crazy for a chocolate Eclair !!

Chocolate éclairs are among the world’s most famous pastries and they are certainly one of my  great Dessert .

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But must of the pastry shop in england and US  sell then with Chantilly cream and chocolate fondant on the top .

This is why I like you to discover the French version of this golden cake …

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Some best Patisserie in France  Like Fauchon, Lenotre bake some fantastic selection,( Rose, caramel, pistachio, coffee, vanilla, chocolate )

As a chef I start do do some different Flavours with raspberry, lemon,  strawberry and this eclair are working so well  with my cocktail party.

For me a eclair need to be Classic and Fashion at the same time ( the Summer eclair …. )

Eclairs are set to become the new cupcake, according to  London retailers.

Selfridges said sales are up nearly a quarter compared with this time last year, and its afternoon tea venue — Dolly’s — is set to sell 12 new varieties. M&S and Jamie Oliver’s restaurant Fifteen have also launched flavoured éclairs, with the latter offering rhubarb and custard.

Experts put the resurgence of the choux pastry treat down to the popularity of afternoon tea and the revival of home baking brought about by TV’s The Great British Bake Off. M&S said: “We think this will be the year of the éclair … it seems their popularity will soon be challenging the mighty cupcake.”

The chocolate éclair has long been a staple in UK patisseries, but new flavours are key to the boom. Selfridges’ executive chef, Mark Taylor, said: “On a recent trip to Paris, the range of flavours was vast — pistachio, mint, violet cream.”

Discover the french Patisserie ( french video )

Bertrand Munier

www.bertrandmunier.co.uk

How living in France changes your lifestyle..

Whether for better or for worse, many foreigners find that their habits alter when they move to France. Here, a few veteran expats share their experiences of how French culture has changed their lifestyles.

For Janine Marsh, editor of The Good Life France, it’s her attitude towards meal times that has altered the most since moving to France.

“During my 15-minute lunch ‘hour’ in London, I’d rush to do my shopping, pay cheques into the bank, phone the utility services, etc,” she recalls.

In France, however, time off for lunch is sacred

eclaire idealparty

“For two hours, banks and shops close. Road workers, doctors, butchers, bakers, candlestick-makers simply va va voom at lunchtime to the restaurant of choice.”

Any tips? Visit you local council office before the lunch break, advises Janine, if you want to get anything important done.

There may be increasing fears over the rise in binge-drinking in France, but there’s still a big difference between the British and Gallic drinking culture, according to “A Year in the Merde” author Stephen Clarke.

“I now drink much less than British friends, who are capable of sinking twice as many pints as me during an evening. France just isn’t as much of a binge-drinking culture (though it’s now taking root here),” says Clarke.

Colin Randall, editor of France Salut and the former France correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, has also noticed a change in his drinking habits.

“I think nothing of having something from the trolley on the train into London from airports but never even think of looking for a pre-flight bar in France,” says Randall.

Piu Eatwell, the British expat author of They Eat Horses, Don’t They, agrees.

“A decade of Gallic influence means that I now almost never drink spirits such as whisky or gin, and certainly not as an ‘apéritif’. The only pre-dinner drinks I drink now are Champagne or Kir,” she says.

“I pretty much exclusively drink wine, and only ever accompanied by some sort of food (generally at meal times, or with an apéro).”

Quality over quantity

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Paris-based American writer Lindsey Tramuta, who runs the Lost in Cheeseland blog says she’s learned to value quality above all else.

“My base expectations on quality – ingredients, craftsmanship, experiences – have gotten higher since living in France these last nine years.

“Surrounded by artisans in everything from food to home goods who themselves place a premium on quality, has indeed influenced my own consumption habits. Buy less, buy better.”

Author Stephen Clarke says he’s abandoned the weekly supermarket shop since moving to France.

“I go food shopping every day rather than filling up a supermarket trolley and trying to live off the contents for a week.

“Sometimes I go out and buy fresh bread twice a day, straight from the oven. My whole idea of freshness has changed.

more ….

a bientot

Bertrand Munier

www.bertrandmunier.co.uk