Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
bleudauvergne

The Montignac Method

Recommended Posts

suddenly can't remember difference, if any, between fromage frais and fromage blanc. The fromage blanc à la crème is what I've been hankering afer, and that's pretty close to cream cheese, more or less; your fromage frais picture looks more like cottage cheese.

Lisa, fromage blanc is curds in their whey, which are quickly drained before serving. They take the form of the mould, and the whole cake is rather light and crumbly. In France, anyway, you pull it right out of the whey, and serve it direct. Fromage frais comes from draining the fromage blanc for hours in a cloth until only the solids remain. Once it reaches that state it's no longer called fromage blanc, it's fromage frais. What I had a la creme at the restaurant was a fromage blanc, rather light and has got curds like the one above. The only difference is the one at the restaurant was full fat and the one from this morning was skim. If the fromage blanc is described as velouté it's been whipped until the curds don't seperate, but it won't hold it's shape like the fromage blancs above do.

There is a fromage frais fermier that I can get at the market that resembles cream cheese... But if you tried asking for fromage blanc and expected something like cream cheese, you'd be dissapointed. Best to just come and visit me and I'll take you to my supplier. :biggrin:

Montignac mentions that you should be careful when choosing fromage blanc and fromage frais, because the velouté versions sometimes contain stabilizers that include starches that could hijack your good intentions. - best to read the ingredients to make sure that it contains milk, and fermenting agent only.

IMG_0404.JPG

The fromage blanc comes like this in a cup with holes in it.

Be sure to drink the whey afterwards! :biggrin:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah! OK, that makes more sense. The mention of cream cheese was actually something that puzzled me, and I meant to ask about it - glad you anticipated the question: I had picked that up from a recipe that had been translated/adapted for American use; it called for fromage frais and said something like, you can't get it here so use cream cheese instead. That wasn't what I remembered of fr frais, and that's why I figured I must be confused and fr frais might be a different animal from fr blanc. Ha! It's just that the recipe translation was lazy. OK, cool, so they are the same animal except for the different treatment at the end - like yogurt and yogurt-cheese. Good. When you adopt me you'll take me the rounds of the suppliers, and we'll compare their product to our home-made.... I'm not surprised about the stabilizers for the velouté - that's like the additives that are put into many commercial yogurts and yogurt-based things here (pectin and so on) to get a more consistent texture. Ooooh, those dirty commercial processors!

Nothing in Mme. Saint-Ange. Hmph. Shall seek further. Lemon juice sure would make it easy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's more.

  • I've now seen another translated recipe which calls for fr frais and says to substitute cottage cheese. So obviously I'm not the only one who was confused!
  • I think I understand now where we might not be talking about exactly the same thing with regard to fr frais as opposed to fr blanc. Yes, one comes with whey and the other without, but both are drained, to different degrees, as they're being made. The whey that comes with the blanc is actually a relatively small proportion of the whey produced when it is made. It does get drained, just not for very long. I don't remember exactly what the ratio is; hope to be able to show and tell soon - soon as I get a hold of some rennet.
  • It comes back to me now that we didn't have liquid rennet when we played with this before - we used the tablets that came with junket - that's why I couldn't picture the liquid. (Oh, this is a long time ago!) Will use whatever I can get. I think the tablets are still available.
  • The lemon juice trick does work, supposedly, but produces a more fragile cheese. Have seen fancier recipes which call for powdered citric acid, which I assume serves the same purpose.
  • Cool! I never knew this: combinations of the three coagulants (rennet, citric acid, yogurt) can be used to produced different types of cheeses, including feta! The citric acid, BTW, seems to be the additional "step" required for mozzarella. Wonder if you can make ricotta out of any of the wheys or only out of the mozzarella kind. This too I think I'll have to find out.

OK, here endeth the cheese lesson for now. Back to work.


Edited by balmagowry (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To thicken the plot, the Indian fresh cheese paneer, which strongly resembles Mexican queso fresco and queso blanco, is made using no rennet, but with a source of acid, either vinegar or lemon juice. The curds are then salted, scooped into cheesecloth, and drained, at least as I've been taught to make it.

I've made mozzarella before, and it does involve both citric acid and rennet -- in addition to the higher temperature, the other distinction is that you knead the curds in mozzarella. That's what makes it line up in those sheets/strands that are so distinctive in fresh mozzarella. Mm. Alas for the loss of my rennet and my milk thermometer. I should look into replacing both.


"went together easy, but I did not like the taste of the bacon and orange tang together"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes! there was also a recipe for paneer - forgot to mention that. How timely, what with Mongo's blog. So am I right in hoping that lemon juice or some such acid will do the job? I'm not really dying to rush out and get the powdered citric acid if I can accomplish the same thing with a fresh lemon - one assumes that that is what was used traditionally before we figured out how to process and dehydrate and so on.

And at least both rennet and milk thermometers are affordable investments. I haven't yet found a source of liquid rennet, but in that instance I'm not above using the tablets if they're easier to find. (Suggestions as to where to find the liquid?)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes! there was also a recipe for paneer - forgot to mention that. How timely, what with Mongo's blog. So am I right in hoping that lemon juice or some such acid will do the job?

You are right. You can make a passably good paneer just by heating milk and adding lemon juice to it until it curdles. Then rinse and drain it.


Noise is music. All else is food.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMG_0409.JPG

My fruit this morning was an orange.

After the walk, it was more of that lovely cherry compote on toast and a bowl of fromage frais 0%.

Today was one of those days. Upcoming deadlines, incoming calls, things to take care of, people to meet, etc. have necessitated my keeping my mind solidly planted in the office. The executive staff where I work has been through a bit of an upset. At times like these, people have a need to congregate, even if we don't talk about it.

I drank 2 cups of coffee, both offered by colleagues. :shock: The habit of not taking coffee has not been broken. I'll go back to not having it tomorrow.

Lunch was with an Italian co-worker who loves to cook, and she gave me her recipe for eggplant parmesean. It sounds heavenly and I can't wait to try it. I had a salad plate, with grated cerleriac (celery root) with mayo, tomatoes, fresh good lettuce, asparagus, and a plate with slices of brie and blue de gex.

I met my husband at the Opera, and we enjoyed a cool drink at the cafe out front, we listened to music and stared into space. Absolutely no planning went into dinner.

IMG_0411.JPGIMG_0413.JPG

Dinner was going to be a spinach salad with bacon. I added a red bell pepper to the bacon, and then tomatoes. Then I decided to wilt the spinach, but not before sauteeing some courgettes. The result:

IMG_0418.JPG

After the "salad", we had some smoked tuna with pickles from Turkey and preserved lemons. (citron confit)

IMG_0422.JPG

Then came the cheese plate, we opened a new bottle of wine, a St. Epine 1999 St. Joseph Delas. It's almost as good as the Cote Roti was. :smile:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Blue, the beautiful food is a given in this blog. But that first photo! Wow.

You should post something in the photo thread (The Shutter Bug Club, in tips and techniques), so it is not all a "what we really think of behemoth's crappy pictures" thread. S'il vous plait?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blue, the beautiful food is a given in this blog. But that first photo! Wow.

You should post something in the photo thread (The Shutter Bug Club, in tips and techniques), so it is not all a "what we really think of behemoth's crappy pictures" thread. S'il vous plait?

Behemoth: would you mind posting the link to that thread? thanks!!

and buono notte Bleu!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

De Rien. Good lord, it's been a while...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last night we went to a friend's house in Condrieu, home of the Cote Roti, where we had a barbeque. It was a French Barbeque.

We brought a Montignac salad. (We didn't mention at all my regime.)

IMG_0430.JPG

There was plenty to eat, this salad was brought by another friend, delicious with mozzarella, tomatos, avocados, and fresh basil.

IMG_0431.JPG

Two things off limits for me were the gratin dauphinous and the tarte au rhubarb.

IMG_0432.JPGIMG_0477a.JPG

The meats weren't ready until it was dark, so I'm not posting any pictures of the meat.

After the meal, they brought out digestifs, eau de vie maison. I had to have one little taste. It was wonderful. :smile:

IMG_0483.JPG

We have to go to another party today....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We have to go to another party today....

Rough work, but someone has to do it. If it can't be me, I'm glad it's you.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Last night we went to a friend's house in Condrieu, home of the Cote Roti, where we had a barbeque. It was a French Barbeque.

I am really curious. What is implied by "French Barbeque"? Is it derogatory or complimentary?

I am enjoying your reports and am tempted to give the method a go. All my other attempts at losing weight have been abject failures. :sad:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to egullet, sarge. Don't worry, you'll eventually succeed once you find a way to do it that you can live with.

Hmmm, when I mentioned the French barbeque, it was neither derogatory nor complimentary, since barbeque is defined differently everywhere we go. The French, although they do like to fire up the grill from time to time, rarely have grills much larger than hibachis, and there is no barbeque culture here, they think of barbeque as something like we do fondue, something that we'll do every so often on a special occasion, but it won't pop into the typical French mind on a beautiful summer evening to fire up the barbeque. In fact, I'm not sure I could buy a gas grill or a backyard smoker here in France, there simply is no demand for it.

The other night, the grill was set up far away from the guests. At the very back of the garden, seen from a distance from the house, the fire was tended to by the host only. The children present were warned to stay well away, and shushed away even if they paused to look in the direction of the barbeque. There was no discussion of what was to be grilled among the guests' conversation, nor did any of the guests approach the barbeque (except me, but I'm a weirdo).

Once we had been ushered to the house and seated on the terrace, the host dissapeared and tended to the meat from time to time, which was cooked all at once. We were seated on a terrace attached to the house, far away from the activity, in fact in the dimming twighlight, the grill was not visible from where we were finally seated for dinner. Not once did we catch the odor of grilling meat. The meat was brought all at once on a plattter, having already cooled to nearly ambient temperature. No vegetables were grilled.

What we saw from the grill were sausages - merguez, which are spiced beef links with owe their origin to North African cuisine, but now sold in the hypermarches and by the halal butchers. They are the sausages that you find on a couscous. This barbeque also featured pork chops. Other barbecuse that we have attended have only been merguez.

I have had some input in the barbeque culture of my in-laws these past few summers, by suggesting sauces, marinades, and vegetables suitable for grilling, and we have enjoyed grilled fish with them. The fine art of cooking the meat to grilled perfection seems to be difficult to accomplish here, most likely due to the charcoal, which is light and puffy, heats up very hot, and then quickly snuffs out. The custom of serving the meat all at once to a seated table that has already enjoyed a first course could also have an influence on the final product.

I speak only from experience and cannot say that it is this way in every French household with a bbq grill, there are exceptions to every rule. :wink:

Whenever I am invited to a French barbeque, I do look forward to it, because it means a less formal atmosphere than your average dinner party, dining usually outdoors or on a terrace, lots of very good rose wine (of which I had to pass up this last time), and wonderful salads.

:smile:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lucy,

I’ve just stumbled on this thread. Your photos are gorgeous, simply gorgeous. Thanks for taking us along on your fascinating journey.

I have not been on a diet myself, I am ever so lucky to be blessed with good genes and an active lifestyle, but I have recently decided to cut two evil things out of my diet completely, High Fructose Corn Syrup, which is used in lace of sugar in practically everything in the US, and Hydrogenated Oil.

It was surprisingly easy, actually, as I do not eat a lot of processed food anyway, nor do I drink soda, save a can or two of coke per month. I shop at my local farmer’s market, artisanal cheese shop, and health food supermarkets, which makes avoiding the two food evils almost effortless. The only thing that I had to reluctantly give up was Nutella, a relic from my childhood, which has now gone the same way as my old teddy bear and my beloved blankie.....

The only time I strayed from my Corn Syrup and Hydrogenated Oil free regime was when I found myself in a small Mid-west town for work recently. Looking through menus at restaurants for things I could eat was harder than navigating a mine-field!! All salads came with gooey pre-packaged salad dressings, and practically everything else was highly-processed. No wonder Middle America struggles so with weight issues. I wouldn't know how to keep a healthy weight in that kind of environment, not even with my genes. It was truly sad.

Have fun on your journey, and thanks again for taking us along for the ride.

Bon courage!

Pim


chez pim

not an arbiter of taste

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Merci, madame. Your pictures are most delicious too! :biggrin:

I am now enjoying my 10cl of this excellent northern Cote du Rhone - it is a 1999 Sainte Epine Saint Joseph made by the DELAS brothers, and I will recount to you tonights journey to dinner.

It began with:

IMG_0569.JPG

A bunch of basil

85 grams whole wheat hard semolina

40 grams wheat flour T250

1/2 t. pepper

a green pepper

a couple of tomatoes

a small eggplant

an onion

3 small cloves garlic

parsley

and (not pictured)

1/2 t. fine sea salt

the juice of 1/2 lemon

3 french bay leaves

a cube of no salt vegetable boullion paste (ingredients: yeast extract, vegtable oil, veggies, spices and spice extracts, parsley. - the yeast gives it a distinct flavor.)

5 grams minced sorrel leaves (I keep it frozen)

After washing the basil and parsley and plucking the leaves from their stems, I put them in the blender with the lemon juice and enough water to puree them. I strained this, preserving the liquid for use in the sauce, and measured 1/3 cup very wet pureed basil and parsley leaves.

The flours, salt and pepper were pulsed in the moulinex with the dough paddle to mix, and then I added the wet leaf puree (consistency of a smoothie), and proceeded to make the dough as with the whole wheat pasta dough above. The dough came together slightly less rapidly than with plain water.

The dough was covered and set to rest in the frigo.

IMG_0577.JPG

IMG_0579.JPGIn a sauce pan, heat 2 t. regular vegetable oil, and add the vegetable boullion. The paste begin to brown and soften, and stick to the bottom of the pan, slightly caramelizing in a nutty kind of way. Add the minced garlic and scrape the pan for a couple of minutes, watching it and smelling it begin to deliciously take on a singed aspect. To use all of the last bits of basil in the blender, add water until you have about 1.5 cups, and swish it around in the blender to catch all the basil. Add this all at once to the sizzling boullion and garlic, and it will deglaze the pan. bring to a boil, add the bay leaves, and reduce this while you start another saucepan.

Mince the onion, pepper, tomatoes, eggplant, and saute them in the second saucepan with a pinch of salt until they begin release their juice, add the sorrel, and continue until that juice begins to evaporate, about 5 minutes. Once they begin to need more juice, add the contents of the first saucepan, removing the bay leaves. Let his simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes, cover, and remove from heat. IMG_0181a.JPG

Put a large pot of water and 1T. sea salt on to boil.

IMG_0590.JPG

Cut the dough into 4 parts and proceed as for the whole wheat pasta earlier in the thread, and cut into rough rectangular noodle shapes.

IMG_0607.JPG

When you have all of the noodles cut, add them to the rolling boiling water, and let em boil for about 3 minutes. At the same time, put some sauce on two plates.

IMG_0611a.JPGIMG_0615.JPG

Add a little bit more sauce, lightly toss, and serve.

IMG_0621.JPG

I can positively say it was the best pasta I have ever had. :laugh:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh my! It looks like the best pasta I've ever had too!

... but wait. I didn't have it. :( Do you do mail-order? :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The fine art of cooking the meat to grilled perfection seems to be difficult to accomplish here, most likely due to the charcoal, which is light and puffy, heats up very hot, and then quickly snuffs out.  The custom of serving the meat all at once to a seated table that has already enjoyed a first course could also have an influence on the final product. 

I speak only from experience and cannot say that it is this way in every French household with a bbq grill, there are exceptions to every rule.  :wink:

Be aware than in some areas of the US, bbq and grilling are not synonymous. It's a regional thing. I have a limited experience with grilling in France as our friends have a small grill on their terrace in the Langudoc. Normally they are lucky enough to grill over sarments, or the stalks from the vineyards that are pruned each year. These are thin and burn quickly so the window of opportunity to cook is small between full flames and ashes. Once, someone made the mistake of buying what I seem to recall as being labelled as charbon vert or green charcoal. It was, as I also recall, made from corn cobs and must have required some special technique to use as fuel for cooking food. All we go was lots of smoke. I wonder if this is your light and fluffy charcoal.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Merci, madame. Your pictures are most delicious too! :biggrin:

I am now enjoying my 10cl of this excellent northern Cote du Rhone - it is a 1999 Sainte Epine Saint Joseph made by the DELAS brothers, and I will recount to you tonights journey to dinner.

Interesting. I've been drinking a bit of St.Joseph myself. A few nights ago I had a J.L Chave from 00 (hmm, or was it 01?)--not entirely sure--but it was a young wine either way. I liked it quite a bit, a very good food wine, and only $40 in a restaurant, even.

bon coût, bon goût, indeed.

How do you like the Dela?


chez pim

not an arbiter of taste

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Similar Content

    • By liuzhou
      The rise and fall of French cuisine
       
      interesting read.
       
    • By apilinariosilvia
      Can anyone give me idea how to make homemade french bread in wood fired oven?
    • By pastrygirl
      There are two local grocery stores here who I'd like to try to sell chocolate to but they have policies forbidding GMO soy,  Soy lecithin is allowed only if organic or certified non-GMO. 
       
      I use a lot of Felchlin, some Valrhona, a little Cacao Barry. The only mention of GMOs I've found from Felchlin is this note in a brochure: GMO absence:  Felchlin fulfills current legislative requirements regarding GMO absence.  All Felchlin products comply with the Swiss Regulation and the European Council Regulation related to genetically modified organisms in food and feed.
       
      Does anybody know what those requirements are?  Is anything European going to be GMO-free?  Or labeled above some %?
       
       
    • By umami5
      Has anyone come across a digital version of Practical Professional Cookery (revised 3rd edition) H.L. Cracknell & R.J. Kaufmann.
      I am using this as the textbook for my culinary arts students and a digital version would come in very handy for creating notes and handouts.
    • By Mullinix18
      I dont believe that any English translation of Carêmes works exist. An incomplete version was published in 1842 (I think) but even the that version seems lackluster for the few recipes it does cover. I think it's time the world looks to its past, but I don't speak great French and it's a huge task to undertake. I hopefully plan on publishing this work and anyone who helps me will get a very fair cut, and if we decide not to publish it, I'll put it out on the internet for free. I'm working in Google docs so we can collaborate. I'm first cataloging the index to cross reference the pre-existing incomplete English version to give us a reference of what yet needs to be done, and from there we will go down the list of recipies and Translate them one by one. Simple google translate goes only so far, as it is 1700s French culinary terms and phrases being used. I'd like to preserve as much of Carêmes beautiful and flowery language as possible. Who's with me? 
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...