October 5, 2010

Books I Love Giveaway: Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table & Spiced Madeleines {Naptime Everyday}

Spiced Madeleines

What’s Going on Today: Tropical storm gusting through town, indoors playing after school.

Naptime Goals: Put chicken thighs in to marinate, prepare measuring cups for Honey Spiced Madeleines.

Tonight’s Menu: Soyaki Chicken Thighs, jasmine rice, madeleines.

Parenting Lesson of the Day: Madeleine/Madeline, it really comes down to living in an old house in Paris covered in vines.

The first tropical storm of the season raged through Connecticut the other day. We were stuck inside for most of it, only venturing out for school and swimming lessons. I have to admit, I didn’t really mind the weather-induced seclusion. It gave me an excuse to stay inside and pay attention to my neglected household chores. Plus, it gave my daughter and I a chance to embark on a baking project. For inspiration I flipped open my newest favorite cookbook, Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan, to find a child-friendly goody we could make together. I love this new book so much that today I am giving away a copy! (Entry rules below).

While my daughter napped I prepared the ingredients in individual measuring cups. One of her favorite parts of “mixing” is adding the pre-measured ingredients to the bowl one by one and whisking them together. She is pretty good at not making a mess, unlike a year ago when our kitchen was coated in flour, and, generally speaking, the batters come out well. We loved this particular batter because it was very forgiving. My daughter took the phrase “fold in dry ingredients” a little too seriously and whipped everything together in a very ungentle manner. I’d beaten the eggs up to a nice light froth and they were beaten back down in the flour by the time she’d had her way with the spatula and mixing bowl. Luckily we weren’t trying to tackle a souffle, we have a few more years before that!

Around my French Table

I let the batter chill for the afternoon and baked them after dinner. Since I used a mini-madeleine pan the baking time was a brief 10 minutes. Then we had a large pan of warm madeleines to enjoy for dessert. The cute spicy cakes were the perfect foil for the cold rain pelting the windows. Each one was like eating a puff of warmth that made us feel cozy and warm all over.

Honey Spiced madeleines

I should note that I am giving away a copy of Dorie’s book by my own volition because it is that good and I want at least one of you to get it from me. Before you think “I can’t cook French food, it’s sooo hard,” remember that this is French food Dorie-style. The queen of easy, fun recipes that send you gleefully skipping to the kitchen when you realize they are actually achievable. This is the kind of French cookbook I happily rally around and think you will, too.

To Enter:

1) Leave a comment telling me about your favorite French dish.

2) Follow me on Facebook and sign-up for my Newsletter* (above left). *If you are already on FB and my newsletter just let me know when you leave the comment.

3) Contest runs from 10/5/10 through 10/12/10 at 11:59pm.

Recipe

Honey Spiced Madeleines

adapted from Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan

Ingredients

¾ c. all-purpose flour
½ t. baking powder
½ t. ground ginger
¼ t. ground cinnamon
1/8 t. ground cloves
1/3 c. sugar
2 large eggs
2 T. honey
1 t. good quality vanilla extract
6 T. unsalted butter, melted and cooled

Zest of ½ orange (or lemon, which we used because I was out of oranges)

Pinch of Kosher salt

Instructions

1. In a bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, spices and salt.

2. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment add the zest and sugar. Rub them together a little bit with your fingers to release the fragrance. Add the eggs and beat until eggs and light and fluffy. About 3 minutes. Beat in honey and vanilla.

3. Remove the mixing bowl from the stand mixer and fold in the dry ingredients. Then, gently mix in the melted butter. Leave the batter in the bowl and press a slip of plastic wrap on top so that it is touching the entire top of the batter. Place it in the fridge for at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

4. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Butter a madeleine pan and fill each cup full. Bake for 10-13 minutes, or until madeleines have risen slightly and are golden brown around the edges. Remove to a wire rack to cool. Dust with confectioners’ sugar to serve.

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

These are great for serving with tea or coffee as is traditional in France. And Starbucks. I also think they are under-appreciated toddler snack food. The mini-madeleine pan we used served up perfect bite-size cakes. I didn’t stress out about her eating too much, especially since they contain a healthy dose of honey – an antioxidant I want her to have more of now that she is in school!

Naptime Stopwatch

Batter prep: 10 minutes

Naptime Reviews

I’ve made madeleines many times for my daughter and these are her favorite, so far. I only put a smidgen of cloves in since they are quite strong, choosing to play up the citrus and cinnamon instead. Do you think she wanted to share with me? Guess again!

  • Angela H.

    So…if you don’t have a madeleines pan…what can be used?

    • Anonymous

      Hi Angela, A mini-muffin pan would work well!

      • Angela H.

        Thanks! I have the batter chilling in my fridge now! :)

  • Sarah

    How exciting! I love Dorie’s” Baking from My Home to Yours” cookbook – it holds a special place in my heart (and stomach! Especially the Perfect Party Cake and the lemon poppy-seed muffins, just saying . . . ) and I’d love to win a copy of her new book!

    My favorite French dish? Cassoulet. Hands down. Yum. Thanks for the opportunity!

    Best,
    Sarah

  • http://twitter.com/HeartlandSarah Sarah Warren

    I also already follow you on facebook and (I think?) get your newsletter . . . it’s how I found this link (facebook, that is!)

    Best,
    Sarah

  • Kdsneider

    I love Dorie Greenspan and would adore winning her book. My favorite French dish is cassoulet. But her simple advice of using fresh and local ingredients produces many a delicious, easy French style meal. This time of year a snack of apples and pears with Wisconsin cheddar, makes a great snack during a hike in the fall color.

  • Jessica F

    I can’t say I’ve experienced very much French cooking…so a baguette with cheese?!

    I love Dorie though!! I’m sure exploring French cooking through her would be a success.

  • Maureen

    It would have to be a dessert most likely – maybe tarte tartin, Thanks! Maureen (jnomaxx at hotmail dot com)

  • Rogercarlamac

    Kel, when does your mother get her copy of the book! mom

    • Anonymous

      When I get it inscribed by Dorie at the book signing next month!

  • Marissa

    salade nicoise is my favorite french dish. and i make something from dorie greenspan’s baking book (my home to yours) at least once a week, so i’m excited to read this new one!

  • http://www.glossglamourandgrace.blogspot.com Carolyn

    Lovely! My favorite french dish so far is either Coq Au Vin or Croque Monsieur – so different yet both soooo tasty!

  • Ngoc

    Haven’t really explored French food but I love anything with baguettes . We eat a lot of Vietnamese food at home, which have some French influences resulting in the French colonization.

    I’m already a fan and subscriber!

  • Brilynn

    It’s shocking that I don’t yet have this book as I absolutely love Dorie. My favourite French dish, if you don’t count things like pain au chocolat and croissants, would be cassoulet, such a comforting winter dish!

  • HoneyBadger

    This isn’t a competition entry as I’m quite sure it’d cost a mint to post a cookbook from the US to me in Australia! But I just wanted to say that having recently become a mother myself, I love the concept of your blog. Life definitely is measured out in nap-length chunks. Chunks that will hopefully be getting longer any day now… Anyway, might whip up those madeleines for my mothers’ group morning tea!

    • Anonymous

      Haha! Yes, shipping to Australia might be costly. I hope you have a wonderful mother’s group tea!

  • Amanda V

    I have not had very much French food. I’m in French 101 right now, though :)
    But I like crepes, eclairs, baguettes.. :)

  • Barbara

    Croque Monsieur – the ultimate comfort food! I know I’ll love the madeleines, and would love to see the wonderful new cookbook on my shelf!

  • Mommybee17

    I can’t think of any particular dish but I do love fondue!

    Angie
    mommybee17@gmail.com

  • http://doriegreenspan.com Dorie

    Kelsey, I’m so happy that you like my new book enough to give away a copy — MERCI. And good luck to your readers.

    • Anonymous

      Hi Dorie! I LOVE the new book, have tabbed it so much it appears to be wearing a ruffled skirt! I hope to see you at one of your events in CT, enjoy the tour!

  • Kelly

    My favorite french dish is Julia Child’s beef bourguignon.

    love the site! look forward to it everyday!

    • Anonymous

      Thank you so much Kelly!

  • Merstar

    I love salade composee.

  • Mrs. DuVal

    My favorite French dish is my husband! No kidding!

    • Anonymous

      I love it!

  • http://wanderingcollegecook.blogspot.com Chris Chang

    ooh french food, i really wish i could cook more of it and of course eat more of it!

    I haven’t had too much of it, but I like foie gras. mm and one of my favorite desserts is lovely creme brulee. i hope to make it someday

  • Bebe

    Definitely Croque Madame…

  • Jodi

    I love Coq au Vin Blanc (yes, with white wine!) from my “Pedaling through Burgundy” cookbook. And I’ve always loved madeleines – I’m going to make yours tonight. So glad I found your site!

  • http://shawneett.blogspot.com Shawnee in OR

    It’s a toss up between French Toast and French Fries … just kidding! But actually, I don’t do much French cooking yet which is why I’d love to win this cookbook. I haven’t bought my copy yet but am making gougeres for this week’s French Fridays. We also make yummy Rosemary Merlot steak that has a French feel.

    shawneeh at yahoo dot com

  • http://shawneett.blogspot.com Shawnee in OR

    Already FB and newsletter fan/subscriber.

  • Fayerimalovski

    I actually made Dorie’s mustart tart from one of her cookbooks last week and it was a hit with the children and adults! And I am already a newsletter subscriber and just became an FB fan! Faye

  • Satomi Blair

    Dear Naptime Chef,
    My favorite French dish has always been the Croque Madame…simple and always delicious! Hope you are well ( I am already a FB Fan)!

  • Julissa

    I like coq au vin.

  • debbie

    I like cassoulet.
    twoofakind12@yahoo.com

  • http://twitter.com/cmh512 cmh512

    My paternal grandmother came over here at the age of 13 from
    Calais, France. My dad tells me about the wonderful food that she
    prepared; especially, the desserts…
    I am already an email subscriber and Facebook fan of your blog!
    Many thanks, Cindi
    jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

  • http://twitter.com/cmh512 cmh512

    One of my favorite French foods is a dessert called ” Blackberry Clafouti!”
    Again, many thanks to you…Cindi
    jchoppes[at]hotmail[dot]com

  • http://www.nosleeptillhanoi.blogspot.com Leigh

    I don’t know if I can pick one favorite dish. I have a quiche in the oven right now. But one of my husband and my favorite French meals is to get some good french cheeses, bread, pate, and wine. I love doing that. My two and half year old likes it too. Sometimes I get greedy and try to give him a cheese stick instead of our cheese. Bad Mom? Possibly.

  • Chris

    I love the combination of flavours in Cassoulet !

  • http://twitter.com/chowandchatter rebeccasubbiah

    love the new site and congrats on the book, love madeleines

  • Dkkporter

    I had never really tried to create French food, until I bought a copy of Patricia Well’s The Paris Cookbook. Your post brought back the memory of the delicious aroma of Mini-Madelines au CItron…my first adventure in French cooking at home. Thank you for bringing that back to me today!

  • Jennifer

    I love your photos!

  • Casi

    My favorite french dishes are french desserts! Sweet crepes, creme brulee, eclairs… but I haven’t done much french cooking. I would love to learn!

  • Codruro

    hi, i’m codruta. it’s not really a dish per se, but i love goat cheese with olive oil.

  • Eugene Good

    Boeuf Bourguignon a La Julia Child

  • Chris M.

    Ratatouille is my favorite. Thanks for the giveaway

  • TinaE

    I love a lot of French cooking. A particular favorite is Beef Bourguignon. Another is Cheese Souffle. But, Croque Madame is probably my favorite. I follow you on Facebook. I went to Bates (1990). And, my kids don’t nap any longer.

  • Nancy

    Creme brulee is my favorite! I have a sweet tooth, and I just love getting the torch out. It is something you prepare in advance, light ‘em up after dinner, and have a really special sweet treat a la francais.

    I receive your newletter but I do not have a facebook account and do not want one. I consider you a virtual “friend” though! Thanks for all the recipes and inspiration!

  • Rosa

    I don’t do a whole lot of french cooking… I think I should start.
    Profiteroles are without a doubt my favorite (so easy, so yummy). Though I also learned to use a melon-baller to make cute little potato bites from a French cook book.

  • Kirsten

    Almost any French dessert. But creme brulee is my favorite- I like to mix in a rhubarb compote.

  • Jayne

    Favourite French dish = I no longer know what’s French and what’s not because of the way I love to fuse my foods together. But anything in stews and soups are up up on my list :-)

  • http://oliepants.wordpress.com/ Susan

    I know this is somewhat cliche – but I love quiche! I love different versions but something about the crust and the rich filling – oh Lordy!

  • Aly

    I cook many French dishes. I particularly like Beef Bourguignon.