June 11, 2008


Bonjour! Michel Roux and I will be leading the class today on the proper way to….how do you Americans say…fouet? Whisk? No matter - you will BEAT THE LIVING MERDE OUT OF THIS STUFF on your way to a lovely, fluffy, light Sabayon! And, as an added treat, we will be baking some Orange Tuiles!!! Merveilleux! Please take notes – your practical exam will test you on these techniques! Écouter!!! And, you, in the back row…yes, YOU-Miss Heather! Please see that your apron is properly cleaned next class! And no more Beaujolais in class! Scandaleux!

We will make our Orange Tuiles first. Michel! Start on the orange zest, s’il vous plait!!! We don’t have all day! And you have some foie gras in your hair!!! MERDE!!!!

Orange Tuiles – from “Michel Roux – New Techniques from a French Master Chef”
½ cup plus 2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/3 cup flour
½ cup slivered almonds
3 ½ tablespoons softened butter
Grated zest of ½ orange
¼ cup orange juice, strained

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Put the sugar, flour, almonds, butter, and orange zest in a bowl and beat well, then mix in the orange juice.
3. Take a scant tablespoon of the mixture and push it off onto a nonstick or lightly buttered baking sheet. Repeat to use half of the mixture, spacing the heaps well apart to allow room for spreading. Dip a fork in cold water and use it to flatten the mixture, roughly into rounds. The more you flatten them, the thinner the tuiles will be, but the more fragile they will be to shape when cooked.
4. Bake in the oven for 4-5 minutes, until the tuiles have spread evenly and are a pale nutty brown color. Leave the tuiles on the baking sheet for 1 minute, then lift them off with a palette knife, and drape them around a rolling pin or a tuile mold so that they set into a curved shape.
When you have molded a few tuiles, you will need to return the bakng sheet to the oven for 30 – 60 seconds, to soften the unshaped tuiles (which will have hardened on standing). Repeat with remaining mixture.

MERDE!!!!! Michel, you are SURE you have written this recipe correctly?? Would you look at this!!!! MERDE!

Les étudiants!!! DO NOT use a tablespoon to scoop the mixture!!!! A teaspoon will be sufficient!!! And definitely keep them in your oven a bit longer!!!! “Pale nutty color”???? Incroyable!!! Bake them longer!!!! MERDE!!! Look at my tuiles!!!!

Ok students, we will not panique!!!! We will simply make do. Escouffier would NOT allow this, but he would manage…he would make do. So, students…SMASH these tuiles! We will figure this out later! Oh, save the two perfectly formed ones. Those are mine. Yes, Peter - it is fair, I'm the boss here. MERDE!

Oh right, everyone settle down. It is time to prepare our Sabayon. Pas de problème – it is easy!!!! Of course, you need to whip this like a stubborn mule, but the ingredients are few and simple to put together.

Coffee Sabayon with Cinnamon - from “Michel Roux – New Techniques from a French Master Chef” (with a variation by Catherine Wilkinson a Arizona Master…oh never mind)

1 tablespoon instant espresso coffee granules
¼ cup cold water
4 large egg yolks
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1. For your bain-marie, half-fill a saucepan that is large enough to hold a round-bottomed copper bowl or pan (or heatproof glass bowl) with warm water. Place the saucepan over a low heat.
2. Put the instant espresso and water into the bowl and whisk with a balloon whisk to dissolve. Lightly whisk in the egg yolks, sugar, and cinnamon.
3. Place the bowl over the bain-marie and continue to whisk the mixture without stopping for 10 -12 minutes. It will thicken and increase dramatically in volume as air is incorporated. The Sabayon is ready when it is light, fluffy, and shiny, and thick enough to leave a dense ribbon when the whisk is lifted. The water in the bain-marie must not exceed 190 degrees F, or the sabayon will start to coagulate; the temperature of the Sabayon itself must not go above 150 degrees. If necessary, turn off or lower the heat as you whisk.
4. Serve the sabayon in glasses as soon as it is ready. Accompany with Orange Tuiles.

MERDE!!!! MY ARM!!!! I have whisked and whisked for so much longer than 10 minutes, Michel!!! Qu'est-ce que tu parles? I don't CARE! I am turning up the heat and don’t look at me with those poodle eyes!!!! I can’t take this endless whisking!!!! MERDE!

Students! It is IMPORTANT for you to determine the best temperature for this Sabayon to cook! Too low – nothing! Too high – egg salad!!! It will depend on your particular cooktop. Mine is electric (MERDE, MERDE, DOUBLE, FRICKIN' MERDE!!!!), so perhaps that is the problème. Once I cranked the heat up a notch, it whisked up beautifully. So fluffy, light, and shiny, just as Michel promised! Il est un success! (But, MERDE - that whisking! I have the biceps of Popeye!)

Students! You have heard of this American place, "
Cost Plus Marketplace"?? Il est magnifique!!! I have found there, the most interesting little chocolate shot cups.

How perfect for our finished Sabayon, yes? Take a close look, students…(and don’t breathe on them, pour l'amour du Christ!).

And now, we will address the slight issue of the failed Tuiles….we shall garnish our adorable little shots with the shards of broken dreams! Il est là!

Merci, les étudiants…merci, Michel! What a class today, no? I am worn out! MERDE! I need a nap! But, we have made a delightful dessert with very little ingredients and learned a bit more about the complexity of heat and whisking, no?

Rendez-vous demain, mes petits!


Peter M said...

LOL...I'm sure this was all recited in a Pepe Le Peu accent!

I was the one heckling you in the back...j'excuse, I guy the 1sr round of drinks.

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Oh Catherine, I don't even know where to begin! LOL!

Lisa said...

You are too funny! They look delicious. I want a chocolate cup NOW!

Jeena said...

They look so beautiful, I did smile reading this post. :-D

Jenny said...

Catherine, I swear you should write for a living. I could read your posts all day. My sister and I would say Marde all the time because we knew it was a bad word in French. Too funny, I love those adorable chocolate cups! Heavenly!

Jenny said...

I mean merde! Merde! My french has always been bad!

Prudy said...

You are truly hilarious. I'll come back and read every day, even if you don't cook. The chocolate cups look insanely good....

Adam said...

Ha you had me in stitches reading that post. I read it with a mustache-io French accent the whole time. Good stuff.

Thanks for your support, I'll mark you down on my list too, your blog is a badass keeper too :)

Catherine Wilkinson said...

I KNEW that was you, you minx!

I know. I leave myself speechless at times.

aren't those cute! And they tasted just great!

aside from the madcappyness, they were very good!

ah, you're just too sweet and normal to cuss like I do!

likewise, Prudy! Love your blog!
I hum your song every day!!!

hey, dessert dude! glad you're here! can't wait to see what you cook up next!

noble pig said...

Oh my, I read the whole thing in my own French accent, and I want to eat it!

Emiline said...

Oh la la! C'est magnifique!
What a wonderful dessert! I love it.

Dhanggit said...

oh catherine this post is funny!! heheh people who can see me might think im getting crazy laughing alone!! oh merde!!

cook eat FRET said...

that was hilarious

and it looks wonderful, great flavor combos.

Mike of Mike's Table said...

rofl, lots of merde. Those look delicious to me though--and they're not smashed, they're merely "rustic!" ;-)

lisa said...

I have to find those chocolate cups! Looks great.

Lore said...

Merde this looks magnifique, too bad mes whisking skills sont nuls.

RecipeGirl said...

Your post made me smile :)

The tuiles look like they were fun to make, broken or not. I love the chocolate cup idea.

Heather said...

(wanders in late, bleary-eyed)

Huh, what'd I miss?

Ooh lala, tuiles l'orange? C'est parfait!

Bellini Valli said...

You crack me up Catherine. Michel would be proud:D

Catherine Wilkinson said...

noble pig!
nice to see you here...I so appreciate your blog.

thank you, sweet thang!

thanks! Merde, indeed!

cook eat fret,
I'm glad you got a laugh...I'm not an exacting cook!

hey! Everything I make is "rustic"!

the cups are great...next time, I'm putting rum in them and just shoot about 10 of them.

they were...fun, I guess! But I'm not the patient type...that might have helped.

that's it. Come after class and we'll discuss your punishment. Probably scrub the pans.

Michel would probably hit me with a whisk!

Dhanggit said...

no post for today..:-( snif snif

Veronica said...

tre magnifique! funny, funny.

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"The Dish" by Catherine Wilkinson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.