Hello French Fridays, we’ve got a lot of catching up to do. I’ve missed you, but I got hit with a nasty sinus infection last month that took away much of my sense of taste and smell, along with almost all of my cooking mojo. I’m coming back on an easy one, so I added in a couple of catch ups, too.
Roasted Red Peppers
I’ve never been a fan of commercial roasted bell peppers – they’re usually a little slimy and the best part of the flavour is in the oil they’re packed in. Homemade roasted peppers, though, are an entirely different matter. Dorie’s recipe has you roasting the peppers in the oven, making it easy to cook them until they blacken and collapse. Once they’ve cooled down enough to peel, it’s just a matter of layering them with seasonings and marinating them in the fridge for at least a couple of hours. I made mine last night and they were wonderful as an appetizer. Unlike the ones out of a jar, they weren’t without texture and they certainly weren’t slimy. Instead, they had a light coating of good olive oil and they were covered in garlic and herbs. I also took a quarter cup of the oil and a slice of pepper, as Dorie suggests in her bonne idée, and made a vinaigrette. I used balsamic instead of sherry vinegar and it was a perfect dressing for salad this evening. Even better, there are still plenty of peppers in the fridge for me to work my way through Mary’s list of roasted pepper ideas.
There has been some disagreement amongst my fellow Doristas as to whether this dessert is a cake or a giant cookie. I don’t really care, because it’s delicious. I used my mother’s homemade cherry jam to fill the gâteau, which isn’t really traditional, but it was wonderful all the same. It’s quick and uncomplicated to make, as long as you leave yourself enough time to chill the dough. I enjoyed this as a summer treat, but I think it will be even better in the wintertime, when a jam-filled treat will bring welcome reminders of the sun.
Olive Oil Ice Cream
Now, I’m not the kind of person that would throw out a cake just because it was made a couple of days ago, but they do tend to get a little drier over time. Since I still had some leftover Gâteau Basque today, I thought a little ice cream might be just the thing to freshen it up. I didn’t have an ice cream maker when the group made Olive Oil Ice Cream, so I decided to tackle one more catch up this week. I was skeptical, I have to say, about olive oil in my ice cream. But this recipe produces a very adult vanilla flavour. The oil cuts the sweetness and enhances the vanilla, while adding a layer of savoury fruitiness all its own. It paired really well with the gâteau, but I would have been just as happy to have it alone, or with some summer fruit.
So, I think I’ve managed a fairly respectable return, don’t you? Once I catch up on the rest of July’s recipes, I’ll be almost on track again. I have to say it’s been good to see you, French Fridays. We shouldn’t wait so long again.
Find out what the rest of the French Fridays crew thought about their Roasted Peppers
You can find links to everyone else’s thoughts about cherry-jam-filled-goodness here: Gâteau Basque
And here’s where you can find the verdict on Olive Oil Ice Cream