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bleudauvergne

The Montignac Method

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Stunning photos, as usual Lucy.

I like the trick of clove-studded leeks.  I'll try that next time I make some stock.

What are "canelles "?

Soba

Did I say canelles? I meant quenelles. Oh I'm always doing that. :hmmm:

Thank you for that question, otherwise I might never have noticed.

So about quenelles. They are one of the famed Lyonnais specialties. Most of the traiteurs make them and sell them ready to pop into the oven. They are dumplings that puff up to 3 times their size, are light and airy, and are usually made with brochet or poultry meat. Julia Child's recipe contains white flour, but many others contain only eggs. I think I might give my hand a try at this tonight.

Here is a recipe for quenelles from Georges Blanc. I have one of his cookbooks (cuisine en famille) and every time I try a new recipe from it, it turns out quite well. I think I will do something like the link above, but have not decided what to use -- poultry or fish.

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Did I say canelles?  I meant quenelles.  Oh I'm always doing that.  :hmmm:

I also did a double take on canelles at first, thinking "Huh? Is this something to do with cinnamon? Wow, Loic's mom really was willing to do some serious recipe modification." But then I thought about it some more.

More great pics. I'm not sure this is going to help me with my diet. :smile:


Can you pee in the ocean?

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Did I say canelles?  I meant quenelles.  Oh I'm always doing that.  :hmmm:

I'm not sure this is going to help me with my diet. :smile:

It will if you decide to follow the diet and don't succumb to things like this...

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After my decision to prepare flourless quenelles for tonight, I went out with a shopping list to get what I needed in the quartier (that means the 'hood). I only needed fish, white wine, and butter. There's only one place to get fish in my 'hood in the late afternoon - Marechal Center. Well, I guess since I'm going I have to make a stop a t the cheese counter... I also had to get the wine for the sauce. So on the way I snapped a pic of some quenelles though a window. Literally every single traiteur (deli) in Lyon makes and sells them. The guy noticed me taking pictures at the window and waved. I went in and asked him about flour in quenelles. He said that his are made with semolina. He said that some people make them with flour. I asked him if they are ever made with eggs only, and he replied that they are made with semoulina or white flour.

But the recipe I linked to does not contain flour, and I implicitly trust good 'ole George to give me good recettes. He's never failed me. :rolleyes:

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I was looking at the schedule for a food conference coming up in Portland (OR), and one of the sessions is entitled "Saturday Morning Market: Provisioning and Sociability in Lyon, France" I feel like I've already attended this session just by reading your blogs :biggrin:

I note that this recipe uses a fair amount of cream (as did the other quenelle recipes I found online without wheat in them) so If I understand the rules correctly you will need to avoid carbs in the meal with with your quenelles?

Does Loic's mother really put the equivalent of jarred gefilte fish in with her blanquette de veau? :huh: Olives I could understand...

I may have to go pick up some veal & try that sabayon with it, it looks incredible. Nice idea of just making some rice on the side for Loic. My husband is a skinny little carb-based life form & I need to find ways to keep him happy & healthy at the same time that I'm doing this for myself.


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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I was looking at the schedule for a food conference coming up in Portland (OR), and one of the sessions is entitled "Saturday Morning Market: Provisioning and Sociability in Lyon, France" I feel like I've already attended this session just by reading your blogs  :biggrin:

Eden, who is the speaker?

I note that this recipe uses a fair amount of cream (as did the other quenelle recipes I found online without wheat in them) so If I understand the rules correctly you will need to avoid carbs in the meal with with your quenelles?

And an obscene amount of butter. But I will do my best to remain reasonable.

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I followed the recipe closely.

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After blitzing the fish, I ever so slowly incorporated the cream and egg whites. Batter. It turned to liquid. I chilled it for the prescribed amount of time. It got a bit thicker but not much.

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It's too bad I didn't read Julia Child's take on a failed quenelle paste...

In Case of Disaster

If by any chance your quenelle paste turns out to be too soft to poach as quenelles it will taste every bit as good if you declare it to be a mousse.

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Sometimes I'm too fixed on an idea to give it up. I can be stubborn that way. I decided at that point to incorporate flour into the mix and try to come out with something resembling a quenelle so at least Loic could eat them. I think it was a stupid thing to do, looking back, because apparently they were delicious and I couldn't even taste them. :hmmm:

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I stubbornly poached them, and although they threatened to disentigrate, they stuck together, but were not very pretty.

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I made the sauce. Now the sauce was a completely different story. It's very simple. Take your shallots, wine, and vinegar, and reduce them till there's just a couple of tablespoons left.

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Then over low heat, incorporate a whopping half pound of butter into the reduction, and the curry powder (just a couple of pinches).

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The 'quenelles' were pretty ugly so I smothered them with sauce and tried to hide them.

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I served this to Loic and watched carefully. Hey Mikey! He likes it!

But they still weren't real quenelles.

Guess what I had for dinner: :hmmm:

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:smile::smile::hmmm::hmmm:

One thing to note: The failed quenelles prepared above acted mysteriously as a high powered aphrodisiaque. Cook's discretion is advised. :wink:

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I'm bound and determined to make the above recipe work. I want flourless quenelles. :angry: (and I want that sauce with them!) What I'm going to try next is to whip the whites before adding them. and use less cream. I'll also use some creme fraiche epaisse instead of creme liquide.

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I was looking at the schedule for a food conference coming up in Portland (OR), and one of the sessions is entitled "Saturday Morning Market: Provisioning and Sociability in Lyon, France" I feel like I've already attended this session just by reading your blogs  :biggrin:

Eden, who is the speaker?

The conference is the Joint 2005 Annual Meetings of the AGRICULTURE, FOOD, AND HUMAN VALUES SOCIETY (AFHVS) and the ASSOCIATION FOR THE STUDY OF FOOD AND SOCIETY (ASFS)

The speaker for this particular session is Rachel Eden Black, Universita' degli studi di Torino. (no relation)

You must think of the opportunities, and not of the restrictions.  I have the following available to me.  What will I prepare?  The possibilities are beginning to present themselves.

They are indeed.

I was just watching Jaques Pepin prepare a simple ChickPea Ragout with fresh tomato and it made me all happy to realize I could have that,. Then I realized that one of my favorite appetizers, which is portobello mushrooms broiled with a bit of brie & some spices, would be a fine addition to a carb free meal.

I have yogurt draining right now to make an herbed yoghurt-cheese spread later, and am about to go make chicken broth. Life is good.

I had to laugh at breakfast this morning though. I had plain yogurt with a bit of pure-fruit strawberry spread, and suddenly remembered my poor mother trying to get me to eat the exact same thing when I was young instead of the pre-sweetened commercial yoghurts and I would have none of it, no way, no how! but here I am years later, choosing it for myself :laugh:


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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It's really nice to hear what you're eating, Eden.  I was thinking this morning that something also that might be nice in the mornings is a fruit shake.  Easy and fast.

This goes back to the "what works for you as an individual" issue. I love smoothies, but for me they have to be a dessert. Likewise I confirmed the other morning that just yoghurt and fruit spread is not the right breakfast for me. My body recognizes the fruit sugars but not enough of the protein in the yogurt to counterbalance it, so I go flying off on a sugar-buzz... Even this morning, I had a (greenish) banana with my yoghurt cheese & toast, and I should have stopped at half a banana :blink:

Breakfast has always been hard for me, I don't like eating in the morning to start with & I'm always very susceptible to sugars in the early hours, so I usually just make a scrambled egg, or else wait till later and eat leftovers (cold pizza is nature's perfect breakfast food :biggrin: ) I know I can have eggs occasionally, but since lipid breakfasts shouldn't be everyday I still need to figure out what I can do within montignac's guidelines that will work well for me. This first week will be about experimenting...


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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I'd love to add some variety to my breakfasts. Before I began to follow the method, I used to just have coffee and skip breakfast altogether. However, for nearly a year now I have been having breakfast (I have been following the plan on and off, but the breakfast habit has stuck). Today I whipped up some clementines in yougert.

On the days you do have eggs, you might consider adding some good cheese. I often have cheese for or with my breakfast. Actually the earlier in the day you have your lipids, the better.

I have gotten into a bad habit of cooking lipid based dinners and should try to find more novel ways to eat my grains at supper. Now that summer is coming up, salads will be playing a more predominant role.

Eden, how has your first week been? How are you feeling, energywise? What ideas have you come up with for breakfast?

Yesterday I was cleaning like a madwoman (guests coming) and realized that my energy level has gone way up since I've been back on the plan. If anything it's a good way to keep from feeling sluggish.

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Did you start with raw fish for the quenelle?

You also need to keep everything cold, and beat in the cream a little at a time, but otherwise they are fairly easy...

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Oui, oui, raw fish for the quenelles. The thought crossed my mind that maybe I should not have blitzed them in the machine... When you make them, do you blitz the meat in the machine?

About the flourless quenelles, a little research has been in order. Paul Bocuse instructs that quenelles fall into two categories, quenelles ordinaires, and quenelles fines or mousselines. The quenelles mousselines are made with a stiff creme fraiche (this is where the first quenelles may have gone wrong, since the recipe called for creme liquide).

Bocuse includes this valuable note which I translate: 'Furthermore, I would like to put an emphasis on the incertitude of the proportions. The solidification of your forcemeat depends on the albumin level of the meat used. Since the ablumin level varies by fish; their size, their age, or their species, the addition of egg whites have the goal of solidifying the cream incorporated and to correct the composition of the meat. A certain amount of trial and error is inevitable to achieve the culminating point of success.'

Well well well. With this little discovery in mind, I will make another attempt at the quenelles mousselines. I am pretty sure that the wild sea bass was a good choice of fish, and that it was the creme liquid that led me astray. It's funny, but when preparing George B's recipe, I had a funny feeling that I chose to ignore. When reading the recipe, I noted that it seemed strange to be giving a weight measurement to the liquid cream, and pondered for a split second that there may have been an error when transcribing the recipe, where he wrote creme fraiche, and it was transcribed as creme liquide, since 'creme fraiche' can mean both.

Yesterday I was sewing and realized immediately that something was very wrong, because my bobbin thread was going haywire. I tried everything, adjusting the tension, then rethreading everything, then changing threads, re-winding a bobbin, etc. I finally realized that I hadn't changed my needle from the one I was using for the heavy fabric. In fact, the problem I was having may have been any combination of those factors, wrong thread, two different threads, bungled bobbin wind, wrong needle, etc. Once I'd worked through all of those things, I was able to get going and quickly finish the project. In the process of that 10 minutes of trouble-shooting, although I didn't particularly learn anything new, I did learn a valuable lesson about trusting that success is not magic or luck. Mindfully working step by step through everything that could be contributing to the problem, patiently keeping my sights on correcting things, will inevitably bring a successful solution. This is also true of cooking.

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I'd love to add some variety to my breakfasts.  Before I began to follow the method, I used to just have coffee and skip breakfast altogether.  However, for nearly a year now I have been having breakfast (I have been following the plan on and off, but the breakfast habit has stuck).  Today I whipped up some clementines in yougert.

Eden, how has your first week been?  How are you feeling, energywise?  What ideas have you come up with for breakfast? 

Unfortunately I'm having unrelated problems sleeping so my energy level is the pits right now, though perhaps better than it would be with the usual sugars coursing through my veins?

the herbed yogurt cheese on rye bread has been my main breakfast since figuring out that the fruit/yogurt combo doesn't work for me, but yesterday I had a breakfast out so I ordered an egg with a small side of sausage :wub: . Actually I ate all 3 meals out yesterday which was a good challenge for me, and managed to stay pretty well within the montignac guidelines.

I made a wonderful curried chicken salad the other day with Non-fat yoghurt and am thinking of making another batch to have on mornings when I just HAVE to have serious protein, but don't want to break into the lipids...

I had a piece of apple as my fruit this morning & found it to be both more filling & less of a sugar buzz for me than the other fruits I've been eating, so I will probably try & stick with apples for breakfast, and save bingeing on cherries for lunch :laugh:


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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It's funny, but when preparing George B's recipe, I had a funny feeling that I chose to ignore.  When reading the recipe, I noted that it seemed strange to be giving a weight measurement to the liquid cream, and pondered for a split second that there may have been an error when transcribing the recipe, where he wrote creme fraiche, and it was transcribed as creme liquide, since 'creme fraiche' can mean both.

My biggest cooking problems seem to always come when I ignore that funny little feeling. I try to keep in mind that my instincts are more to be trusted than someone else's written down recipe, because even if they are the greatest chef ever, transcription errors occur, or their onions are different from mine, or..., but it's always a bit hard to think you know better than the recipe when cooking a dish you haven't tried before...

re the quenelles: is it possible that the humidity in the kitchen also plays a role in how much liquid you need to add?


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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I just have to share this, it reminds me of a post upthread where Loic and his sister ate most of your loaf of pain integral:

Bill made a huge deal when we were shopping this weekend that I had to get him some "regular bread" so he wouldn't be stuck eating my scary whole grain stuff, but then he got a taste of the wonderful pain integral style bread I bought, and now he's completely ignoring his bread and eating mine :laugh:


Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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the herbed yogurt cheese on rye bread has been my main breakfast since figuring out that the fruit/yogurt combo doesn't work for me, but yesterday I had a breakfast out so I ordered an egg with a small side of sausage :wub: .  Actually I ate all 3 meals out yesterday which was a good challenge for me, and managed  to stay pretty well within the montignac guidelines. 

That's great Eden. It's fat free, correct?

When you are eating out, you can't always control the hidden sugars. There are a few things to consider though. Most industrially made sausage and bacon, in fact most processed meats (sandwich meat like ham, chicken loaf, etc.) are cured with sugars. Keep on the lookout for words ending with "ose", sucrose, glucose, dextrose, etc. Malt is also a bad one. Go to the store and read the ingredient labels on the processed meats. It's scary!

Your best bet is to try and steer clear of the breakfast meats. A 3 egg omlette with cheese and onions is an example of something you can order out, or steak and eggs. Be careful!

Another thing to avoid in restaurants is salad dressing. Sugary gook. Ask for oil and vinegar.

If you adore bacon, sausage, etc. and want to have it at home, do some legwork and find a source that contains no sugar. It's not going to be easy because sugar is a widely used industrial preservative. You could also make your own. :smile:

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This morning I had a bowl of yougert with some of a new Montignac product I picked up, quince spread. It was very very sweet. In fact I could say it was too sweet. The ingredients are quince, concentrated fruit juice, pectin, and lemon juice. It was also a little bit grainy.

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For lunch I enjoyed a big bowl of squid soup, the soup version of a stuffed squid dish I prepare from time to time, and a piece of Comte cheese.

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I love your words and pictures.

I illustrated making quenelle mousseline in the eGCO consomme unit http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=26540 .

I use liquid cream, but beat it into the whizzed egg white and fish or chicken slowly, over ice. If its getting too liquid, then stop!

I've heard that high levels of Omega 3 (fish oil etc) helps weight loss. Two tablets a day seem effective. Does anyone know anything about this?

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Here's The Squid Soup Recipe.

Thank you for the link to the class, Jack! I have done your consomme with an old bresse hen and it was simply wonderful. I'll follow your advice about everything being very cold. I also wonder if I could freeze a bowl instead of doing it over ice, because we don't have much room for ice and only two ice trays. I will indeed skip the straining step to begin with while at the same time carefully removing all bones. I will also poach mine in a pot by batch. Perhaps today I will begin with chicken quenelles.

I don't know about helping weight loss, but I do know that the fish oils are generally good for the health. I don't eat fish all the time because we simply can't afford it. But we eat it when we can. I also try and get wild fish when I can. We love the taste of fish, that's what keeps us eating it!

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I've heard that high levels of Omega 3 (fish oil etc) helps weight loss.  Two tablets a day seem effective. Does anyone know anything about this?

A bit off-topic, but related nonetheless --

I'm contemplating going on a specific type of diet called carb cycling which involves a regimen that approaches something like this: (a) day 1 -- high carbs, (b) day 2 -- low carbs, [c] day 3 -- no carbs (1 g protein per lb. of bodyweight, a gallon of water and five or six fish oil caps), (d) rinse and repeat. Do this until bodyfat levels reach 12%. Needless to say, this type of diet is not for everyone (indeed, it's probable that it's not for most people on eGullet! :biggrin: ), but it is an effective diet...at least for my purposes.

Back to your scheduled program.

Soba

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