October 21st, 2014

Two pictures

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Two pictures to share with you:
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an alternative design for an apple galette. Chain link pattern on round puff pastry. Caramelised apple sauce. Tamami. www.cocoandme.com - Coco&Me - Coco and Me

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Sometime ago, I was playing around with an alternative design for an apple galette.

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The recipe goes something like this:

1. Peel Granny Smith apples & thinly slice with a mandolin.

2. The raw apple slices are too brittle to loop in to pattern, so blanche them for 1 minute, then dunk in cold water to stop it from cooking further. (This method also stops them from oxidising & turning brown!)

3. The chain design only works with similarly large slices, so to use up the unused end scraps of apple, make a caramelised apple mix which will go in-between the apple chain & the puff pastry base.

4. Use an apple corer to cut a circle in the centre of the apple slices, then loop them up to make a chain pattern.

5. Then assemble that on puff & caramel mix, & bake…

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… The recipe itself was a definite success, super moreish, the caramel layer really made it special together with the flakey puff pastry. But the chain design was too fiddly to say the least. Perhaps I’ll ditch the pattern idea & go for a more universal look after-all, like how others do it, layering the slices like roof tiles, so that I can share the recipe properly with you one day…?

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Gifts from Paris - Chocolon (chocolate covered macaron) from Sadaharu Aoki Paris and Mendiants Chocolate bar from Alain Ducasse. www.cocoandme.com - Coco&Me - Coco and Me

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Last Saturday I had a surprise visit from Mrs.C & her husband Mr.E from Paris! :) :) :) It was a super happy moment. :) :) :) Smiles (Mrs. C), smiles (Mr.E), smiles (Me) !  It was really great to catch up on each other’s news! The extra surprise was that they’d brought with them a gift for me too! Wow… thank you… It was chocolate-coated macarons from my favourite Japanese patissier Sadaharu Aoki, & a mendiant chocolate bar from the one & only Alain Ducasse! I own cookbooks by both of these men* & absolutely respect them, so believe me when I say that these sweet things are highly valued by me & will be truly enjoyed, ~ slowly…, not a single crumb will be wronged by landing anywhere other than in my mouth.

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In fact, why not try one now as I write. Oooooh… (fingers dancing over the macarons), let’s see…, the…, yes, the mac with the red top. Ah! Raspberry! Or should I say ‘framboise’ since it’s from France. ~ (sigh) I needs me a trip to Paris again .Yep… (scoff), yep… (munch).

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* Here’s a confession ~ I’ve not counted (& I dare not want to ~ it’ll be a bad reality check of my spendings), but I think I have around 150 food-related books in my bookshelf… When I’m ‘in’ to something, I like to get ‘in’ to it knee-deep obviously. Lol… Recently I’m ‘in’ to dropping in to the local Oxfam Bookstore (a charity second-hand bookstore here in UK) to check their latest offerings. Last time I was in there, I bought a signed Raymond Blanc book from 1991 for £5. The pictures are a little dated, but every single one a fantastic, no-nonsense recipe. I’m learning a lot from it, currently cooking from the vegetable section. I also plan on making the pumpkin soup from this book for Halloween! ^^

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15 Comments »

  1. Hello Tamami
    Lovely surprise to see that you are writing often for your blog again! The apple tart looks gorgeous and very pretty with the chain pattern. With or without the pattern I would love to see the proper recipe for it one day! x

    Comment by Louise - October 22, 2014 11:12 am

  2. Hello Louise!!!!
    Thank you!!! :) I’ll try to write the recipe properly one day!!! And yes, good of you to notice that I’m trying to blog a bit more nowadays! Still slower than most bloggers I’m sure, but please stay tuned!!! :) best, T x

    Comment by tamami - October 22, 2014 11:40 am

  3. So glad you liked our tiny presents!! It was a pleasure seeing you and your wonderful stall again! We could have bought everything, from the lovely tarts to your appetizing carrot and banana cakes… but your truffles were truly fantastic! Your caramel ganache has no rival… and the beautiful box we bought from you will soon be empty… Thank you again for your warm welcome, we look forward to reading your posts!!

    Comment by Caroline - October 22, 2014 2:41 pm

  4. Hello Caroline!!!! Thank you for leaving a comment here!
    It really was great seeing you both!!! Both of you are such happy good people – it’s a pleasure knowing! xxx

    Comment by tamami - October 22, 2014 3:00 pm

  5. How lovely your gifts are! Books from second-hand stores don’t count in my eyes ;)

    Comment by jonquil - October 27, 2014 12:49 pm

  6. Hi Jonquil!
    Yes! Those gifts were really really lovely. The macarons went down quickly. Books: just this morning, I bought another second hand cookery book – this time, Nigel Slater’s ‘real fast food’ for £2. It has no pictures. Just crammed with recipes that is easy to cook for every day eating. :) Yet another happy purchase!

    Comment by tamami - October 27, 2014 4:00 pm

  7. Lovely to see you writing again! Your blog oozes happiness which spills out to your readers!
    I love the look of your apple tart, I may have a go at that even though you say it is fiddly, then again, have I the patience I wonder? I also love the look of your gifts from your Parisian friends, do you know I have never tried a macaron yet? Scared to make them, do you have a good recipe for them?

    Comment by Jeannette - October 30, 2014 9:41 am

  8. Hello Jeannette!!!! Yes, I’m writing fairly regularly recently! And it feels good!
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    About the macarons, I have a recipe for it that I wrote on here back in 2007:
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    http://www.cocoandme.com/2007/03/29/parisien-macarons-with-tried-recipe-process-photos/
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    Please have a read! :)
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    All the best,
    Tamami xx

    Comment by Tamami - October 31, 2014 12:23 am

  9. Hi Tamami, it was great to meet you at the Broadway Market on Saturday, if a bit awkward because I feel as if I know you a little and you haven’t a clue about me. (Why would you???) It was worth the trip south to say ‘thank you’ for inspiring me and for your willingness to share your knowledge, such a gift to us. I ‘forgot’ to share my (your) chocolate truffles and found them en route to Manchester. What a shame. LOL. I have a recipe to share with you to try unless the ingredients don’t appeal to you. It’s Italian and has cardamom seeds and pistachios, star anise, fennel seeds and cinnamon bark, some citrus tones and, well, it’s the only cake I’ve ever seen grown men fight over. Even if you don’t like it, please, please make it and offer it to a man just for fun. The recipe was pilfered and altered, so I don’t want to publish it, but would send it to you if I had an email address. You have mine, obviously. Thanks again, Rebecca the Bread Lady

    Comment by Rebecca - November 25, 2014 12:48 pm

  10. Hi Tamami (again), I’m not good with computers and see that my surname has appeared. Can we remove it somehow? Yikes! And will be at the end of this one, too. Oh dear.

    Comment by Rebecca - November 25, 2014 12:56 pm

  11. Hello Rebecca!!!!! :) :) :)
    Wow!!! You wrote a comment here, that’s awesome, thank you very much!!!
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    I really enjoyed your visit – I loved that you showed me your calendar with your creations. Including seeing the Gateau Basque taking it’s place on January page!
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    I just wish I was good with bread-making like you!!! I’ve quite an impatient personality(!), so waiting for the bread to prove just isn’t for me…! Bread making is definitely something I need to practise!
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    I also was really touched that you used the word ‘mindfulness’ in your conversation. I’ve been pondering on the word ever since. It’s not everyday that someone says that in a conversation!

    T xx (I’ll send you an email in a little while too!)

    Comment by Tamami - November 25, 2014 3:31 pm

  12. The recipe has been emailed. Let me know if and when you make it. Some of the expensive ingredients can be substituted for less expensive ones, e.g. I sometimes opt to replace ground almonds for half of the pistachios and use lemon instead of lime, ordinary yogurt rather than Greek. There’s some scope there, I think.

    With respect to mindfulness, for me it is essential to be able to draw on the stillness that it offers in a time of stress and unbelievable ‘busy-ness’ in the run-up to Christmas. Stop, close your eyes, attend to what you hear, feel, smell… breathe. Feel the breath entering your nostrils, cool, and going back out, warmed. Examine your hands. The wonderful things they do for us, like helping to make bread, the staff of life. Eat a morsel of something you like, mindfully. Examine it in your hand or on the fork or spoon. Really look at it. Take it slowly to your mouth. Notice your body preparing to take it into your mouth and your marvellous fingers, hands and arm bringing it to your mouth without even having to think about it. Let it rest on your tongue, then push it with your tongue. How does it feel? Soft? Rough? Sweet? Sour? Salty? Chew and swallow slowly. How was that? What did you notice? Did your mind wander? It’s okay if it did; that’s what the mind does. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. Ah. Now dim the lights, google ‘The Great Bell Chant (The end of suffering), put your headphones on and just chill for seven minutes. Ahhhh. Rebecca the Bread Lady

    Comment by Rebecca - November 25, 2014 6:59 pm

  13. Hello Rebecca!
    Thank you very much for the email. Those pictures of your creations are just so amazing!!! And I might have to adopt your family motto… I’ll have a stab at the recipe over the holidays! :)
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    And thank you for writing about ‘mindfulness’. As you’re probably aware, the word itself can encompass so many aspects of life, don’t you think? Like being mindful of surroundings, talk to people with respect, treating things properly, and so on… I have read a book called ‘mindful eating’. Perhaps you have the book already, if not, I truly recommend. It’s written by Jan Chozen Bays.
    The book also talks about eating slowly, staying aware.
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    Looking forward to hopefully seeing your daughter. And good luck with the teaching. And keep in touch! :)
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    T xx

    Comment by Tamami - November 26, 2014 9:23 am

  14. Love your booksteal! I have a similar huge cookbook library, and I’m not giving up a single one.

    Comment by Olive - November 29, 2014 7:56 pm

  15. Hi Olive! :) Yes, the cookbooks are like a treasure, right? I have no intention of giving up too!! :)

    Comment by tamami - December 2, 2014 11:18 am

 

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