Somethin' to say? Was zu sagen? Des choses a dire?

Follow mrlemarquis on Twitter If you want to make a comment but can't find the "make a comment" box, which keeps on disappearing, just send it either to twitter, facebook or to me at: , and I'll maybe publish it for you....Only said maybe....! Here's the latest one: (Who IS this guy called Keith.....) "I just wanted to leave a comment to say that (from personal experience), although you get a bit stinky for the first few weeks, after that you don't get any stinkier! And those olives do look nice, don't they? All the best" Keith

hungry?Thanks to Tina Concetta Marzocca.

Actuelle informations...New....Neu....

Due to illhealth I have decided to post my articles here:Just click on the link....

Depuis peu vous pouvez suivre des liens par voie du "Twitter" vers des articles amusantes et/ou intéressantes.......... Allez-y.... essayez. C'est en haut...
For some time, you can follow links chosen by mr le marquis and presented on "Twitter". These links are intended to inform and amuse you - every day, or nearly, new ones ....Try it out! It's just above...
Zeit einige Wochen Können Sie interessantes oder amüsantes Verfolgen durch "Twitter"... Fast jeden Tag was neues von mr le marquis ... Versuchen Sie es...Zu finden oben...

here it wanted it....!

somebody (!) wanted to know so here it is...

simple local vegetables

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Saturday, 31 December 2011

pour tous-for all-fur alle.......

Happy New Year - Bonne Année - Gutes                     Neujahr......................................

(iwmpop - mr le marquis)


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Friday, 9 December 2011

Thin stuff -for a change...

  I saw a photo or two published from a meal I gave a little while back, and "Carpaccio de Boeuf" was the main's a little information...
Now one of the reasons I chose to serve this was because I was fed up with the normal types of Christmas meal preparations.... and - although this wasn't for Christmas, I just felt the urge to try something different and adapt it from there for Christmas!...It's not always possible, since if you have family or friends you only see at Christmas, then they expect the standard things   or if you have children too....after all you don't want accusations that you're spoiling traditional Christmas for the kids (as well as avoiding all the vomit....)!
Christmas pudding decorated with skimmia rathe...Image via Wikipedia
But......If you are just a couple, or a small group of people looking for a change, then these can be for you.
Carpaccio can be, and is, made from almost anything, certain foodstuffs being more adaptable. Basically raw meat or fish, obviously freshness is rule number 1, and certain things like poultry should be avoided, although cooked poultry - so long as you can slice it thinly enough - could be envisaged, or smoked poultry (yes - it does exist, although difficult to find)

Ducks amongst other poultryImage via Wikipedia
Important point number 2 is that the plate should be served with thin traces of "vinaigrette"  ..made from good olive oil and if possible one of the specialist vinegars such as Balsamic or Port/Sherry wine vinegar, herbs and a good, thick emulsion being required.
If you can't get there, adding a little cold water to a thinner dressing - beating well - can often give the necessary thickness.

Another suggestion is to present "opposites" -hot fried or roasted potatoes, served with the cold carpaccio and vinaigrette, is surprisingly good.
Fish carpaccio is a delice, but make sure the fish is adapted and FRESH.....tuna or salmon are ideal, and I'd even go as far as to suggest haddock (smoked) - kippers (raw, smoked) and any other smoked fish, with a sauce adapted to the taste, and an accompaniment which fits (potatoes tend to go with everything)
Try it - for a change, and let me know how it went......
   Happy Christmas - see you all next year.......
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Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I'm game - it's wild......!

Wild RezepteIn German, it's called "wild" - coming from the fact that it's a source of supply from the uncontrolled free countryside, or supposed to be, in English, it's called "game" - you'll have to figure that out for yourself!
Becoming rarer and rarer, due to economic as well as environmental problems (a large number of wild animals are affected by radiation, by simple eradication of their lifespaces and of course by "culls" - the eradication of their species at the end of the day), "Game" or "Wild" is a rather expensive luxury nowadays, unless you are a hunter yourself, or have access to people who are.
This is a shame, because originally, game actually was a better choice than the domesticated animal, simply because they ate the food they scratched for and found naturally, whereas the domesticated animals are fed - targeted diats for the production of muscle (meat)- irrespective in general of the taste or quality.Kaninchen einfach und schnell
I have a tendency to arrange the general term "Game" or "Wild" into categories which show the animals (more and more of them) which are becoming "normal" and almost domesticated. Rabbits for example, are farmed, but the so are deer, ostrich, and many others.
The truly "wild" (that is savage - free roaming) are becoming fewer and fewer, and this fact leads the human population to start breeding - the human being always likes to be in charge and get what he wants, when he wants it, on his table (and elsewhere)- something only arrangable by breeding. Unfortunately breeding reduces geberally the quality and taste, but certain animals are difficult - if not impossible - to breed.
Hase im RotweinsoßeHare is one of them, although it does happen.
Other strictly "wild" animals are boar (wild pig) Wildschwein in Rotwein  and generally "stag" (venison) - although deer meat is often reared on "farms" nowadays.Bacon-Wrapped Rack of Venison In general, the meats are all used in similar recipes as for other domesticated meats, bearing in mind that often the truly "wild" animal will probably have a much stronger taste than it's domesticated counterpart, which is the main reason that slightly "sweet-sour" sauces are used, and garnishes tend to have "sharp" items such as deep red cherries, quite sharp in taste - or ..
"Cranberry" sauce, also relatively sharpish - although in various garnishes other fruits are used, such as pears or even peaches, and I have seen and tasted  "Kiwis" in use with game dishes. Here is a little link to get you started....
Of course, "Game"  or "Wild" would not be complete without mention of all those feathered members of the breed. Partridges, Grouse, Pheasant  even wild Duck and Geese, all of them make up the larder as well. The smallest "quail" are now so often breeded, that I don't honestly consider them within the category "game".
There are "hunters" (at least they call themselves so) who shoot even the common sparrow - to be frank, this is not only criminal, but stupid. When a "songbird" is hit by a large calibre cartridge, there is NOTHING left over to eat!
Songbirds are there to sing, so let 'em sing.....!
It's a sort of "gentleman's agreement" - so - sing on.......!  Here is a link to charm you all with their little noises.....

Finally, although "wild" or "game" is available all year round, there are certain periods when you can be sure that it is frozen and not fresh, during the "brooding" season. It's illegal, almost everywhere to hunt and kill during the breeding season. In the same way, there are periods when the meat is best, in Autumn, mainly, and always remember (if you're a huntsman) any animal (even the human being) is more tender when killed in ambush rather than after a long chase!
The reason is simple - a chase makes the muscle hardening natural product "adrenalin" pump through the flesh, making it much more tough to chew!  Even animals know this......
In French, for those who live here, the collective word for "Game" is "Gibier" and covers all (feathered or not) varieties. A hunter in French is a "Chasseur" and he is a dangerous species, blasting as he does at anything that moves in the local vineyards.......!

Bonne Appétit! 


Friday, 4 November 2011

Remember, remember.......

Tomorrow is the 5th November.....logical, you say, today is the 4th. Yes, but the 5th November is a well installed tradition in Britain, here is a link to inform you
Basically, what happened some centuries ago, was that a gentleman named Guy Fawkes and some cronies tried to do what many people since then have tried to do... - or wanted to - Blow up the British Houses of Parliament, otherwise known as St. James's Palace.
He and his cronies were caught and "dealt with" but this is a Weblogspot about food and drink you say, what has this got to do with it....?
Well, this event and the subsequent execution of Guy Fawkes gave birth to various things strictly British, in the kitchen.
A link....?[]=bonfire_night   -  Here you are, loads and loads of suggestions, most of which don't really have anything to do with Guy Fawkes, but represent more the frenetic energy invested to produce that British staple food - the all its forms. Basically a welcome break from the rigours of a damp and chilly British winter, this tradition has just about all the things you can make and eat outdoors (if the weather isn't typical) around an enormous bonfire.The perfect baked potato Baked potatoes - generally burnt because the bonfire is too big and too hot to approach and try to save your potatoes - sticky treacle pudding, difficult to eat with the fingers, and treacle toffee, difficult to eat with dentures....fudge - which just melts in the mouth, right onto the weighing scales.....roast chestnuts of course,Nutty toffee apples..and strange things called toffee apples - made to break your teeth and keep the Dentists gainfully employed until Christmas or later....
Generally the bonfires last a long time, and fireworks are sent up into the black sky, strangely enough, during my childhood, this was the one and only occasion in the year when one saw fireworks. New Years Eve did not really figure on the plan.
One of the strangest but also enjoyable dishes made in the British cookery repertoire is this.....Toad in the hole  It's called "toad in the Hole" - is known by almost every British Citizen, but can only be made by very few. Basically sausages placed in an oven proof dish, covered with a batter (also used for the infamous "Yorkshire Pudding" to accompany the sunday roast beef) and cooked in the oven. The origins of this dish, like it's name, are lost in time, all I can assume is that some Yorkshire lass must have been making it when a toad jumped in and not turning to a beautiful and rich Prince when she kissed it, the Yorkshire lass threw him, the toad, the sausages and everything else into the oven.
Try it - it's actually surprisingly tasty, and served just on its own, it is not stodgy or over filling. It's also relatively economic and simple enough to prepare.... Here's the recipe:
Drinks on a Guy Fawkes night....? Basically anything - there are no particular "specials" - British drinks are preferred, like Cider, or that unbeleivably horrible brew they call Beer.
A cup of tea is also allowed, even if you're likely to be the only one drinking it!

Have a nice time......

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Les choses si facile....The simple things in life

Some of the things in the kitchen are assumed by all non-chefs to be simple, so simple they could even do it themselves.....Well it often is NOT the case....Here's one (in French but easy to follow):

and so good for a healthy body.........:

Delicious always...........  and no need for one of those "ring" things....!

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Fish & Chips......

 Well known, well loved, and now also served (in Britain anyway) with "Curry Sauce"......!
I've mentioned this famous and beloved "mass" British food before, and just this week, I let people on Facebook know - 'cos I'm kind - that in France, the shops "Lidl" were specialising in a product from UK called "Fish'n Chips" a sort of bastardized product....frozen, just needs throwing into hot deep oil (or the dustbin). I know lots of those people will be off, on Monday, to Lidl to stock up with this product, and yet - it's so easy to make yourself!
OK - it is a bit messy, and it does need a bit of practice, particularly for the Fish. Everything is in the secret of the "coating batter", and I'm going to break (a little bit) the rules of the pro chef, and I'm going to give you the recipe (almost all of it) for my famous batter, which is great for all batter dishes, sweet and salty....fruit beignets - fish - or even "spam fritters" which, strangely enough are actually quite delicious.....

Other uses are for scampi or king prawns, peeled and just with the tail left on to pick it up with - dipped into the batter and deep fried...also delicious ....  onion rings in batter.....
and many, many more things......

The secret is the batter....I repeat....

 This one shows a batter used which is made with beer instead of water as the liquid ingredient, and that is one part of the secret, not Beer, but an ingredient found in beer - YEAST...!
It's so easy, flour, water(lukewarm), yeast (dried or fresh), a little sugar (for the yeast to nourish itself from), salt and pepper (add later), a little colouring of a yellowish hue (saffron is the best but also the most expensive, and other colourants can be used). This is to give the slight colour of "golden" without risking burning the batter and the contents trying to get the correct attractive looking finished item.
Just mix them all together, get the thickness right (it should cover the back of a spoon without dripping)  (never mind the colour, the thickness is about right here).....
Now you need time, a cloth to cover the mixture, a warmish place so the yeast can rise to at least 3 times the volume, then beat it back down,,,,and YER READY......!
 Deep frying in oil is the best, although lard or dripping can be used. A decent oil (not palm oil though) should be used. Olive oil is the most expensive, but supports higher heat than sunflower or colza. It must be HOT...HOT....HOT.... otherwise the deep fried article will soak up the oil and be oily and greasy, not crispy as it should be......
Don't over cook......a typical Scampi needs only 2-3 minutes, a fish filet typically 4-5 minutes, or until the agreeable colour is achieved. Over cooked, the product dries out underneath the batter.
So....go enjoy.....This batter does not like being frozen and used again, but it can be used up to make a kind of pancake or even a version of the famous Yorkshire pudding.....try 'em....
There ya go...SOME of the secrets, the others you will all figger out by trial and error....I promised Harry  (Harry Ramsden - Yorkshireman of high reputation for Fish & Chips) not to give it all away when I worked for him for a short period just outside a place called Ilkely (on Ilkley moor 'bat hat fame) in Yorkshire, England.....we did daily around 3,000 portions of "Fish & Chips" - with tourist buses coming from all see the famous Moors ..but really for the Fish & Chips....


Monday, 24 October 2011

They know what to do with the Euro...!

The motto appears on a scroll beneath the shie...Image via Wikipedia
Ah yes.....all these UK experts who know all about it........

Ah oui - ces experts Britannique.....

On 01 January 2000 GB£1 bought €1.60

On 24 October 2011 GB£1 bought €1.15

Go figger......... Vous avez compris.....?

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Thursday, 13 October 2011

Getting Stuffed......

  Yes - it's the protesting season again, and the season when letter boxes all over France are full of special Seasonal offers.
These things and myself have one thing in common....."Foie Gras" (a fatty liver), mine probably due to "over indulgence" over years, and without doubt I shall be partaking again this year, just a little bit less - for health reasons!  Yes, the act and the pictures of "gavage" (the force feeding of ducks and geese) are not a pretty sight, unfortunately just as other photos of our human nourishment are not, and most certainly Abattoirs or slaughterhouses are not charming places, but I can't get involved in the debate surrounding these things, this is a blog about food and drink, and the arguments - both for and against - have very valid points.
The Southwest of France (Périgord) is probably the center of the French industry, sold all over the world,    but it is produced generally in many areas. Alsace, particularly the Strasbourg area is well known, amongst all its thousands of charcuterie and pâtés products, the Foie Gras is present, less than it used to be, but it is still present.
Basically Foie Gras is NOT good for the human being, it is too fatty, it is too high in Cholesterol and other things, but in the Season of Festivities, there are so many other things not good for us that one more or less is minimal, and in any case, just from its price, Foie Gras limits itself to small quantities. It comes in all forms, "fresh" - conserved, smoked, bottled, you name it - you can find it.
The most sought after, by Gourmets and Gourmands, is the fresh variety, simply because it allows itself to be prepared in so many different ways. This explains the price also.
Fresh Foie Gras is sold in what are called "lobes", sometimes in parts of lobes, and the classic and traditional way of preparing is uncomplicated, in words, but complicated in deed...."De-veining" the item (taking out very carefully all the small veins that are to be found) is long and difficult to inexperienced fingers. Care has to be taken that the look of the whole article is preserved, and not damaged, and the fact that one is dealing with a small fortune tends to give cramps.....!
The further preparation is relatively simple, thickish slices being passed quickly in hot butter, until slightly browned and then served on hot toasted bread.  Garnishes are, for myself, unrequired, maybe something for colour, but very little. The simplicity of the product should be allowed to shine through.
I know there are many places which serve elaborate concoctions, but if you look into it, this is generally to hide the fact that the expensive item - the Foie Gras - is in a very limited quantity, and often quality!
The other means of preparation available, like the "blocks" - the tins - the glasses, the pâtés, the terrines containing a certain amount of Foie Gras, can be used in various ways. They may be served as for the real item, they can be eaten cold, some people even make a sandwich from them, and - of course, the "exclusive" canapés for those "finger buffets"  Generally "over garnished" it is a shame to see the fine product being hidden away by mundane things like fruit and lettuce, but everyone to their taste.
If you are going to partake over the coming Festive Season, then think that it's not finished just with the expensive Foie need something else, like SWEET wine! Normally Bordeaux sweet white wine, it doesn't need to be a "Tokay" ( at a few thousand $$$$ a bottle for the genuine article) - a simple Sauternes will do the job admirably,   and even then, a "Château Yquem" isn't necessary either!

On the other hand, you can always stay with something you know, just

try a Rosé or "demi-Sec" variety... ..

......So long as it's "Demi-Sec"....

.............which has nothing to do with dry....!


Bonne Appétit!....... Bonnes Fêtes....                 Octobre 2011

METEO chez moi-Bei mir-my zone

This is what it's doing right now....or nearly! Go with your mouse to the image and click....

Lecker...Tasty... Appétissante

Des bonnes choses - de presque partout...! Leckereien von fast Uberall...! Tasty things from almost everywhere...! *********
European Goodies...! Slideshow: Mr’s trip from France to Europe (near Dieuze, Lorraine) was created by TripAdvisor. See another Dieuze slideshow. Create your own stunning free slideshow from your travel photos.
******* iwmpop (mr le marquis)- Vauvert, France - Janvier 2011