Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Plum Tart

This is my favourite fruit tart. This scrumptious tart combines to perfection the juicy freshness of stewed plums with the flavours of lightly roasted tapered almonds and crusty puff pastry. This is, in my opinion, a nice dessert when you are running out of time and still want to give a treat to your loved ones. It should be served with vanilla ice cream and a glass of Cálem Velhotes Tawny Port.

1 Puff pastry (I use 270g Naturaplan Betty Bossi Bio)
740g plums, stoned (I use quetsche plums: they are the best)
50g light brown sugar
A few slivered almonds (garnish)

1. Roll out the pastry and line the base of your 28cm tart pan. (don’t remove the baking paper)
2. Sprinkle 50g light brown sugar over the base of the tart.
3.  Place the plums, cut side up, in neat concentric circles in the tart shell.
4. Bake in a preheated oven at 190ºC for about 40 minutes, until the fruit is soft and the crust is golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. Garnish with few slivered almonds.
5. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Serves 6

Tips Cálem Velhotes Tawny or Taylors First Estate (these port wines go well with chocolates, chocolate cake, fruit salad, fruit tart and creamy cheese).

Le Gâteau du dimanche - Sunday Cake

Those who know me know that I have a sweet tooth and that I am an unconditional fan of homemade cakes, like the ones that mum makes on weekends and for special occasions such as birthdays, Christmas, and Easter. My mum instilled in me a passion for cooking and celebrating all family moments with friends and good home cooking and baking.

Since I was a little girl I have always liked watching and helping my mum preparing the "Sunday cakes". She knew all the recipes by heart, she used cups as a measure and it was done "by eye". The smell of baking cakes coming from the kitchen still remains in my memory today...Let me tell you, they were the best cakes I ever tasted. Sometimes she tried new recipes, to our utmost pleasure. The cakes never lasted long, we finished them in no time. That is why I grew up with the taste for good homemade cooking and traditional and unassuming cakes. Nothing gives me more pleasure than going to the kitchen to make a cake and share it with my loved ones. The most special moments are always spent around a table full of flavours and cheerful conversations.

Thus I am so excited to share with you my favourite recipes for preparing good desserts for the weekends. You can eat them at tea time, as a dessert or at any time you need a little sweetness!!!

These recipes for cakes, pastries, pies, cookies and other desserts are from my mum, family members, close friends, acquaintances and my cookbooks.

YOU CAN COMMENT on them in my blog, make them and share them with your loved ones!

I hope you enjoy these recipes and that they spice up your tables throughout the year.

Today I propose a very simple little recipe, plum tart. Granted, its aesthetic quality may not be the most elaborate here, but the end result is very successful.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Fondue for two in Gruyères

The Swiss specialty that I adore above all is cheese fondue and, if I can enjoy it in a great restaurant, in the heart of a medieval town like Gruyères, so much the better.
Our feast in "Chalet de Gruyères" was excellent; an authentic and quaint place. The smiling waitresses are dressed traditionally and the decor is rustic. Our "moitié-moitié" fondue (a half and half mixture of Vacherin and Gruyère cheeses) was delicious, the "viande séchée" (air dried beef) a treat and the raspberries with Gruyère double cream and meringue were to die for!

After lunch we strolled around this medieval village, visited Gruyères Castle and went for a wonderful walk to Lake Gruyères.

I hope the medieval town of Gruyères, an architectural gem, will inspire you for as a well-filled day out, just 1 1/2 hours from Geneva.
The Gruyères Tourism website is well worth a visit.

Restaurant Chalet de Gruyères
Rue du Bourg 40
1663 Gruyères
Tél: +41 26 921 2154

Regarding my outfit, the medieval town of Gruyères inspired me to adopt a slightly vintage look... I fell in love with the vibrance of this white bohemian maxi dress. It features crochet lace and embroidery. I bought it in a street market years ago and it is still as delicate and stunning as ever.  I completed the ensemble with my new espadrilles (the height in comfortable shoes) and a black bandana with white spots to adorn my hair.

Reader's Look
Dress: very old
Espadrilles: Macarena
Denim jacket: Mango Jeans
Bracelet: bought from a jeweller's shop
Necklace: bought from a jeweller's shop
Bag: Code 43 Boutique (new, bought on sale)
Bandana: Amphore Boutique

Friday, 25 September 2015

Idyllic day at Lavey-Les-Bains thermal baths and Saint-Maurice

A few weeks ago we decided to give ourselves a real treat. Very early in the morning we left for a 1 ½ hour drive from Geneva. We took advantage of the virtues of the hottest thermal waters in Switzerland at Lavey-Les-Bains. This is my second time there and I love everything about it, including Saint-Maurice which is 5 minutes’ drive away. The setting of the thermal baths looks like a painting. They are surrounded by mountains and are situated in the heart of lush green countryside.

The two outdoor pools and the indoor pool are at a temperature of 32°C to 36°C.  They also offer a wonderful range of treatments in their wellness centre. The atmosphere is joyful but not noisy and crowded.

After spending many hours in the baths, we left with our batteries completely recharged. We headed for a late lunch in St. Maurice and a stroll in this charming village.

I recommend that you discover Lavey-Les-Bains thermal baths and St. Maurice. You will adore this green oasis, I am certain!

Regarding my look, there is nothing better than a swimsuit when you are feeling uncomfortable with some extra kilos that need to be lost. This swimsuit is not only beautiful but is also made of good quality material and thus flatters the silhouette.

I love flip flops and denim miniskirts, they are the essence of the summer. I bought this miniskirt in a boutique that has since closed. I had a crush on this handmade straw basket, it is practical and pretty. Its simplicity makes it a must.

Reader’s Look
Swimsuit: El Corte Inglés
Fouta: Attitude Bio boutique
Flip Flops: Ipanema
Sunglasses: Bee
Denim mini skirt: shop closed
Top: Massimo Dutti