Vegan Chocolate Banana Muffins

The recipe for these vegan muffins is based on this winning vegan coconut banana bread, which I modified to skip the grated coconut, add coarsely chopped bittersweet chocolate, and bake in muffin form, with a sprinkle of unrefined sugar so the top part is extra extra desirable.

The texture of these muffins is astoundingly satisfying, moist and tender and chocolate-chunky, the flavors are big and bold, and they are pretty easy to put together, so they are an ideal baking project if you’re pressed for time and energy but mighty hungry.

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Pissaladière (French Onion Tart)

Pissaladière (French Onion Tart)

Photography by Céline de Cérou.

Pissaladière is a specialty from Nice, in the South of France. It’s a thin-crust onion tart topped with black olives and anchovies, baked on a pizza-style dough.

The name comes from pissalat (pee-sah-lah), a Provençal condiment of puréed anchovies, cloves, thyme and bay leaves that used to be spread on the dough before baking. Nowadays, it’s rare for the cook to actually make this condiment; it’s more common to feature the anchovies whole and on top, as I’m showing you here.

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25 French Recipes for Thanksgiving

Gorgeous stove photo courtesy of La Cornue.

Thanksgiving isn’t a thing in my own very French family, but I have many American friends in Paris who do celebrate it.

They usually host their special meal on the Saturday following the actual Thanksgiving Thursday, since French companies and schools don’t consider it a holiday (obv.).

A few years ago, it was a real challenge to find a whole turkey to roast in Paris in November — easier around Christmas — but Parisian butchers have gotten the memo, and have started advertising turkeys to their American customers, in varying levels of English. Ordering in advance is a must. (If you’re nervous about this, read my tips on Paris butcher shops.)

Through my extended family and friends, I have been fortunate to partake in a few Thanksgiving meals over the years, on both sides of the Atlantic. The feeling of warmth and the amazing food are not soon forgotten.

And when I am invited, I like to contribute dishes that are both French in spirit, but fit nicely into the Thanksgiving traditions.

So here are my suggestions of French recipes for Thanksgiving, if you want to add a little Gallic flair to your all-American celebration. Did you know French settlers actually preceded the Mayflower Pilgrims by several decades in holding the first Thanksgiving service in the New World?

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Whole-Grain Fermented Mustard

Whole-Grain Fermented Mustard

Photography by Céline de Cérou.

Did you know you can actually make your own mustard? From mustard seeds? And that it’s fun, and easy, and really really good?

I sort of knew but didn’t try it until I found a recipe for whole-grain fermented mustard in an excellent little book called Aliments fermentés, aliments santé, by Marie-Claire Frédéric, that’s all about fermented foods.

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Best of August


How did the month of August go for you?

Did it fly by? Mine too!

I had plans to make progress on a couple of big projects — things like a new book, and an online class — and I did some work on them, but I also let myself just enjoy the slow drip of summer.

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