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My earliest attempt at cookery began with the filleting of my sister's goldfish at age 2 and cooking my pet rabbits by age 7. Life has been downhill ever since.

The Mother of All Quiches For Mother’s Day

Quiche Lorraine is perhaps the most famous of all quiches. Purists will tell you that only bacon, cream, and eggs are allowed. Though it is common to find other ingredients like Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, and even chives. The original quiche Lorraine may not include cheese, but I won’t tell anyone if you decide to add one cup of shredded Gruyere to the mix.

Download my FREE beginner’s guide to quiches for a planning schedule, 6 additional quiche recipes, and a list of kitchen-tested tips to guarantee a perfect quiche every time.


Learn the Best Ways to Clean and Prepare Mussels

I love cooking mussels at home because they are both quick and easy to do. Really the ultimate fast food dish. My favorite mussel recipes are a comforting cross between a soup and a hearty hot meal. Once you master the basic preparation, you can easily add a few different ingredients to create your own new variations. Be sure to serve with plenty of toasted bread for dipping into the flavor-packed broth or even try serving with French Fries.

Turmeric and Ginger Mussels photographed by Francois de Melogue

How to Clean and Debeard Mussels

It is important to only clean the mussels within an hour of cooking them. Tap any open mussels on the counter…


Artichoke and Goat Cheese Tarte Tatin

A lot of people want to buy artichokes and don’t know what to make with them. Today I want to show you the best way to eat and prepare artichokes. Learn how to make a simple Provencal artichoke and goat cheese tarte Tatin.

Artichoke Tarte Tatin by Francois de Melogue

This is my wife Lisa’s favorite dish of all time. I owe my marriage and consequently my son to the merits of my artichoke tart. I originally developed the recipe while I was the Chef at Pili Pili restaurant in Chicago. One evening, my future wife came in for dinner with…


A Classic Dessert that Never Gets Old

Here’s a great project to tackle this weekend — make these insanely delicious chocolate profiteroles stuffed with vanilla ice cream, then showered with a hot chocolate sauce at the table. Yes, it is a cliche; yes it is a dish from another decade; yes it is really good.

Profiteroles are the perfect home dessert and guaranteed to please everyone, from small children to grown adults. And once you master the dough for profiteroles you can easily make several other classics like a feather-light beignet, gougères, and crispy potato puffs known as Pommes Dauphine.

The first step is to make cream puffs, a.k.a. profiteroles, a.k.a. choux paste, a.k.a. pâte à choux

Choux paste is a simple French…


The Quintessential Family Meal of France

Pot-au-feu is a slowly simmered meat and vegetable dish that appears on most home tables in France. Pot au Feu, which literally translates to ‘pot in the fire’, started its life in working-class homes as a way to make less expensive cuts of beef more tender and palatable. Think of the original crockpot. The long slow cooking resulted in 2 dishes: a clear nourishing broth and a rich meal of beef and vegetables.

Pot au Feu, Photo by Francois de Melogue

There are as many variations for pot au feu as there are cooks. I have eaten pot-au-feu prepared with lamb, chicken, lobster. …


One Sauce to Rule Them All

One of my favorite Provençale sauces is called Anchoïade. It is an anchovy sauce that marries perfectly well with everything from raw vegetables, fish to grilled meats. It is the perfect way to start a Provencale themed meal smeared on tartines and served as an amuse with a glass of rose.

Today I am going to teach how to make an anchoiade and how to make two other dishes; chef Michel Guerard’s Lentil Salad and Roasted Red Peppers stuffed with creamy Goat Cheese.

Anchoiade is an interesting Provencal sauce. French people will revel at its wonderful briny flavors while…


The Definitive Bean Dish of French Country Cooking

‘There is no dish in the Southwest of France more iconic, cherished, and controversial than the cassoulet. Not only is it the best pork and beans dish you can imagine, but it’s also a definitive dish of French country cooking — one that, to this day as you noted, stirs up fierce debate over what makes it authentic! When most travelers go on a trip to France, they bring back photos, or maybe a copper pot; some even smuggle a Camembert or saucisson in their luggage. Me? I bring back recipes.’ A friend once wrote this to me after I…


Taking My Tastebuds on a Well-Deserved Staycation

I find myself browsing through old cookbooks far more during Covid than I did previously. Like everyone else who loves to cook right now, I am looking to find new inspirations, new tastes to take my tastebuds away on a well-deserved vacation.

Lamb Shanks in an Egg and Lemon Sauce by Francois de Melogue

One of the cookbooks I have been revisiting is ‘Arabesque’ by Claudia Roden, a fantastic book dedicated to the cuisines of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon. I bought some halal lamb shanks at a nearby International market and wanted something new to make. …


When being authentic gets in the way of a good meal

On January 22, 2021, the editors of Food & Wine magazine issued a rare apology for being culturally inappropriate with a picture of Mole Verde. The editors thought it would make a better photo if they doused the mole in hot sauce and served it with a bowl of lime wedges. Neither of which is culturally correct and both are completely unspeakable in Mexico where the dish originates.

Duckherd’s Pie (Hachis Parmentierau Canard) by Francois de Melogue

The admission touched off a series of heated debates on food boards across the internet. People from all cultures were pointing out how and where their culture's cuisine got bastardized. Apparently, Food…


How Not to Break a Tooth Eating This Dessert

Today is January 6th, the day every French kid (whether born in France or of French parents) looks forward to. The holidays have come and gone. Today is the day we get to eat Galette des Rois, or King’s Cake.

Galette des Rois (Almond Pithiviers), photo by Francois de Melogue

As a sweetener, parents (or the pastry shop) hides a small figurine sandwiched among the warm rum scented layers of frangipane (almond cream) and puff pastry. The figurine, also known as a feve, used to be a small bean but changed to a ceramic figurine sometime in the late 1800s. The change guaranteed the chance to break your tooth if…

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