French fancies

Having missed the deadline for a winter solstice or Matariki celebration, we are planning a French dinner on Saturday night to celebrate Bastille Day. I suppose it should really be a Bastille tea party, so I can shriek ‘let them eat cake’ in the manner of poor, misquoted Marie Antoinette, but it’s harder to work coq au vin into an afternoon tea menu, n’est-ce pas?

So, I’m thinking something cold to start, followed by coq au vin, a salad, cheese, pudding, Vanessa Paradis, Piaf – like a scene from one of my school French textbooks, but better.

What would you serve up at a Fete de la Bastille down under? Can you point me to the world’s best coq au vin recipe or your favourite terrine? And what on earth should we have for pudding?



  1. July 9, 2012 / 5:40 am

    the person to ask is Phil from Phil in the Kitchen as he has an abundance of French recipe books, or Karen from lavender and lovage, who lives en france… I would do a chicken thigh coq au vin… naturally!… and then crepes!

  2. July 9, 2012 / 8:48 am

    For dessert, clafoutis with seasonal fruit, pear and frangipane tart, fondant au chocolat, floating islands… sounds like a fun party!

  3. July 9, 2012 / 9:17 am

    Nice idea – any excuse for a party. Being a lover of pastry and caramel, my instincts scream tarte tatin! Also, I had a friend who made a wonderful rabbit rillette once, which could be a starter option? Looking forward to the results!

  4. July 9, 2012 / 12:16 pm

    Dear Lucy I do believe I missed your birthday!!! Bugger! There it is infront of my nose on my birthday calendar.. I have a card waiting to be sent… also a thank you for the wonderful parcel I foundwhen I returned from Welly! Oh well better late than never!! Enjoy your French party! xoxo

  5. July 9, 2012 / 12:21 pm

    Is that playdough?

    Vichysoise to start (it's cold), the salad would be chicory based, for dessert I would serve a French tart with all the fruits beautifully laid out over a layer of creme angalise – I remember those from when I was a teen on holiday, they looked so pretty.

    Sorry don't have a particular coq au vin recipe that I can recommend.

  6. July 9, 2012 / 7:04 pm

    Merci beaucoup, those are all wonderful suggestions. I do love ile flottante, but I'm not sure I'm brave enough to make it. But rabbit rillettes and vichyssoise are both doable… And I think Raymond Blanc's mother's recipe for coq au vin will do nicely (first ingredient is two litres of vin rouge).

  7. Anonymous
    July 10, 2012 / 9:13 am

    Are you in Auckland? Pay a visit to one of the french cafes La Tropizienne for yummy dessert options. MMMMM
    Kielz 🙂

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