filling the empty nest with food

Mushroom Tartelettes

A well-written recipe is a lovely thing. And I don’t fully appreciate them until I have to follow a recipe that raises more questions than it answers. Suffice it to … Continue reading

March 30, 2015 · 8 Comments

Purée of Cauliflower duBarry

If I were prone to high blood pressure, the paucity of instructions in Escoffier’s recipes would have already driven me to the doctor’s office for medication. I wonder sometimes if … Continue reading

March 14, 2015 · 1 Comment

Velouté of Celery Soup

#1. Now I know why everyday cooks don’t use French cuisine techniques. It’s 8pm on a weeknight, I’ve been cooking, sautéeing, and simmering for the past hour and a half … Continue reading

March 8, 2015 · 2 Comments

Mother Sauces

In Escoffier’s world there are sauces, there are small sauces, and then there are Mother Sauces. Everyone knows how important sauces are to French cuisine. The Mother Sauces are those … Continue reading

March 2, 2015 · 8 Comments


Mayonnaise is one of the foundational cold sauces in classic French cuisine. It’s actually very simple (yeah, right, you scoff) and involves an emulsion, or combining two unlike components. The … Continue reading

February 22, 2015 · 2 Comments

Petits Gateaux (Small Cookies)

My sweet tooth got the better of me, and I skipped already from the foundational sauces straight to the back of the book, to the desserts. (I’ll be back to … Continue reading

February 15, 2015 · 1 Comment

Brown Stock

This week I transitioned from white stock to brown stock: fonds brun or estouffade–Escoffier’s term for simple (really?!!) brown stock. And I’m realizing it’s not so straightforward to replicate recipes written … Continue reading

February 8, 2015 · Leave a comment

Learning Fundamentals and Finesse from Escoffier

Auguste Escoffier. French haute cuisine. Words to make any cook tremble in fear who considers herself pretty good but has never been trained. I have been lucky to be able … Continue reading

January 25, 2015 · 6 Comments

Skimming Scum with Escoffier

So, I started at the beginning, which in haute cuisine, starts with stocks. For Escoffier, sauces and stocks are the fundamental elements of cooking. He wrote that they are “the … Continue reading

November 29, 2014 · 3 Comments

Dinosaur Caramel Corn

Well, not real dinosaurs. Just me here feeling like one. It’s one thing to marvel at how someone else’s past is so far removed from present realities (as was my … Continue reading

November 22, 2014 · 2 Comments

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