Best of 2005

As the year draws to a close (remember that they’re adding an extra second for free! What are you going to do with it?), here are a few of my favorite food things from 2005.

Favorite recipe for a first course: Warm Leek Salad with Fresh Walnuts. Contender: Artichoke and Goat Cheese Mille-Feuille.

Favorite recipe for a main course: Asparagus and Strawberry Tart.

Favorite recipe for dessert: Blueberry Yogurt Cake. Contender: Peach and Apricot Compote with Poppyseed Cream.

Favorite Paris meal: a sparkling lunch at Les Ambassadeurs in the Crillon palace, where Jean-François Piège officiates. (Weekday lunch menu at 70€.) Contender: Gaya, Pierre Gagnaire’s new seafood restaurant (44 rue du Bac in the 7th).

Favorite meal elsewhere in France: Chez Gianni in the Luberon. Contender: Manechenea in the Pays Basque.

Favorite meal abroad: Blue hill in NYC. Contender: a tapas bar in San Sebastián.

Favorite new tool: without a doubt, my cast-iron cocotte. Contender: my immersion blender.

Favorite sandwich: El Bocadillo. Contender: dessert sandwiches.

Favorite new condiment: Pimentón de la Vera. Contender: Spirulin Gomasio.

Favorite make-your-own discovery: homemade ricotta. Contender: homemade canelés.

Favorite food-related book: L’Art Culinaire Moderne. Contender: M.F.K. Fisher‘s The Gastronomical Me (I know, I was probably the last person on earth who hadn’t read it).

Favorite personal news of the year: a book deal, naturally. Contender: we have a reservation for El Bulli next summer!

Wanna share some of yours?

  • Favorite personal news: a new food blog, a wonderful boyfriend and a new job i love, and a cute little apartment. I say, not bad.

    favorite new kitchen tool: microplane zesters and my kitchen aid mixer, nicknamed ‘animal’

    favorite new york city meal: wallse
    favorite meal abroad: l’entregeu in paris


  • kitchenette

    Thanks for this very useful review!It is so difficult to choose among all these beauties: as for me, your best recipe (the only one I have tried so far) is the “fromage frais-coriandre” dip :very simple, very fresh, very much appreciated by my friends.

  • Deanna

    Bonne Annee !

    All the best for a wonderful 2006 !

  • julietgb

    Favourite internet blog: of coures this!!

    Favourite personal news: the national pastry chef award, a new amazing boyfriend, and the best of a all, winning a trip to Italy because a pastry recipe from my own creation was the second best…

    Favorite buenos aires meal: tea at the ceasar park hotel.

    Favorite place for dinner: I Fresh Market at Buenos Aires in Puerto Madero in a good summer night with a good partner:)

    Happy New Year!!! And the best for 2006!

    Favorite dessert: Gâteau de Mamy à la Poire, it’s so simple and delicious

  • Lovely idea, Clotilde, and what an amazing year you’ve had.

    My most unfortunate moment was breaking my arm while we were on holidays in Thailand

    Most memorable meal in Australia: Michel Roux Jr at Windy Point – pate de fois gras AND truffles in the same meal!

    Best meal outside Oz – Thomas Keller’s Bouchon at Las Vegas

    Most awesome place – Yosemite … I LOVE that place! Runner-up – Grand Canyon

    Favourite food-related book – Thomas Keller’s Bouchon. Runner up – MFK Fisher’s The Art of Eating, 50th Anniversary Edition

    Best new gadget – my razor-sharp Cuisipro nutmeg grater.

    Most surprising Christmas present – a return ticket to China in March! Thanks Greg.

    Best wishes to all for 2006


  • Every single dish I cooked this year was extraordinary, because I was finally feeling healthy enough to cook it and eat it fully.

    Away with the gluten. Who needs it anyway?

    And of course, realizing this brought me my food blog, and this connection with the most marvelous community of people online.

    It wouldn’t have been possible without your site.

    Happy New Year, Clotilde. May it be a marvelous surprise.


  • What a wonderful list! We loved Gaya as well, all the more so because it was one of those impulse lunches where you just duck in because it looks yummy, not because anybody told you about it.

  • Happy New Year Clotlde.

    I’ll include my favourite experience for 2006 – dining at Tetsuya’s in Sydney.

  • Joan

    each time I’ve made the cake (raspberries) not a crumb left on plates…cheers Clotilde and a joyous New Year…

  • Most memorable food moment of 2005:
    Eating a raw wolf-fish plate at Tempo in Toronto. The taste was so close to Chinese New Year’s raw fish, and it’s a taste he achieved with shredded lime leaves, just a hint of deep fried shallots, fruity olive oil and the freshest fish. A miracle!

    Btw… your Carbonnades Flamandes dish is an excellent rendition of a sometimes dull recipe. I used to live in the north, so I know. What I like is actually the Potjevleesch… Pot of Flesh. That’s chicken, veal and rabbit jellied in beer. Delish! My favourite restaurant in the north is a rather homey Flemish affair in Cassel: Estaminet’T Kasteel Hof.

    Happy Eating in 2006!

  • re: potjevleesch… also jellied in white wine. oops.

  • Happy and delicious new year, dear Clotilde! :-)

  • becky

    I had artichokes and goat cheese so I made a tart inspired by your mille-feuille recipe. mmm yummy.

  • jmw

    One great 2005 food moment, in New Orleans: oysters, shucked and tossed on the counter one after another, all for me, at Felix’s in the Quarter. I ate dozens, no condiments necessary, just cold beer to drink. I always go there when in NOLA, but it was extra good this time.

  • Beryl

    Favorite Paris Meal: Restaurant Parcheminerie, 31, rue de la Parcheminerie, Latin Quarter (I know what you’re thinking, but it’s on a quiet side street.)

    Favorite meal elsewhere in France; Icone, Aix en Provence, 3, rue Frederic-Mistral

    Favorite New York meal: Katz’s deli, Lower East Side; Bricco (Italian), Upper West Side.

    Favorite new tool: silicone muffin pan and mats.

    Favorite new condiment: Trader Jo’s roasted bell pepper and artichoke tapenade.

    Favorite make-your-own discovery: croutons.

    Favorite food-related book: “A Thousand Years in Tuscany,” by Marlena De Blasi. Her style is a little overblown, but yum. Includes recipes! I make the Tuscan Beans at least once a month. I had them for lunch today, in fact.

    Favorite personal news: Great new neighbors who love to eat and drink.

  • herbgirl

    Just have to post this:

    Absolute favorite dining experience of 2005: in El Born, Barcelona: the tasting menu at the cozy-chic Santa Maria restaurant (and watching the trio of chefs at work just 5 feet away)

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