Archive for July, 2009

July 31st, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !

A less crazy breakfast treat, Mouse aux Marrons.   Lighter and fluffier then a puree, this one is yummy, and a little more reasonable then eating Lait Sucre right from the tube.


Part of the joy of traveling to foreign countries is checking out the food: what’s new, what’s different. Even junk food can be exciting. (In Lyon, our cab driver’s eyes popped open when I offered him a piece of “Canadian gum.”)


But in France, there’s one sweet that stands out above the rest and that’s “Lait Concentré Sucré.” Basically it’s condensed milk in a tube. Sticky, sugary and disgustingly good, I’m hooked on it. The FC’s father always has some laying on the table for breakfast, either to add to coffee or spread directly on bread. I’ve always liked condensed milk in pies and custards, I never knew it could also be a tasty condiment!



Lait Concentré Sucré: My new favourite toothpaste.


Jerome, a consultant in Paris, pours Lait Sucree into his coffee. He particularly likes the sugary stuff that settles on the bottom.

Jerome, a consultant in Paris, pours Lait Sucré into his coffee. He particularly likes the stuff that settles on the bottom at the end.


Maxim, who works for a European train company, guzzles some Lait Sucree. He's not the only Frenchie I've seen doing this.

Maxim, who works for a European train company, guzzles some Lait Concentré Sucré. He's not the only Frenchie I've seen doing this.


Alongside the tube of Lait Sucré, the breakfast table also includes honey, three types of jam and a box of raw cane sugar (which I saw Maxim, the FC’s closest friend, sprinkle directly on white bread and butter.) No eggs. No bacon. No veggies. Biscuits, yes.  We also had chocolate sauce in a can served alongside “fromage blanc” (a cheese that has a sour cream/ yogurt-like taste and feel.) Creme de Marrons (a sweetened chestnut puree) is another French breakfast fave, also served with fromage blanc.)


I love waking up and walking onto the terrace where Frederich, the FC’s father, has already layed out all the goodies, pouring my coffee, and one by one, being joined by the other French guests (Marie-Anne, Nicolas, Jerome, Perrine.)


With the exquisite view of the sea and the warm rainless weather, life doesn’t get much sweeter.


French Rivvie breakfast table. See all the jams? I count 4, almost finished, plus a honey jar that's in its final days. That's my teaspoon of lait sucre in the foreground, which I popped directly into my mouth after taking this picture. Yum.

French Rivvie breakfast table. See all the jams? I count 4, almost finished, plus a honey jar that's in its final days.


Café Au Lait Sucré

1 small cup strong brewed coffee or espresso
2-3 teaspoons lait concentré sucré

Mix and enjoy the sugar rush.

July 29th, 2009 Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Welcome to Heliopolis, a beautiful island and nature reserve in the French Mediterrean. Clothing optional.


The FC dives into the colony's lifestyle.

The FC dives into the colony's lifestyle.


The FC’s parents rented a sailboat for our stay and yesterday afternoon we went on a sailing tour which ended at Heliopolis, the home of their friends Fabrice and Regis, a gay couple who bought on a house on this island nudist colony two years ago.


More notable than all the hootie and patootie passing us on the road up the hill, was the food. Fabrice, the obvious chef in the relationship,  prepared us a four course meal that included a lemon rissotto, something I just made recently back in Canada. But this rissotto was different, more potent and complex with an appealing sourness. When I inquired about the unique flavour, Fabrice went to his pantry and pulled out a jar of “citron confit,” small preserved lemons. He uses these instead of fresh lemons (five preserved lemons for two pans of risotto.) 


The special ingredient in Fabrice's risotto: citron confit, typically used in Middle Eastern or Morroccan dishes.

The special ingredient in Fabrice's risotto: citron confit, typically used in Middle Eastern or Morroccan dishes.



But perhaps my favourite dish was Fabrice’s entree: a tomato tart with three layers; tomato coulis, sun-dried tomatoes and fresh.   It was utterly delectable and I regretted not accepting seconds.  I’m going to have him send me the recipe and will share with you as soon as possible.


Fabrice's Triple Tomato Tart.

Fabrice's Triple Tomato Tart


After the cheese plate (a typical French ritual I’m getting dangerously addicted to) Fabrice served a desert tart,  featuring tangy fresh peaches and rosemary, a pairing that works amazingly well.


For me, Fabrice set a new bar for entertaining. Four pies and two pans of risotto?   Each day I’m here French hosptitality continues to impress.


I also discovered a French superstition. During dinner, when I polished off the last of a yummy bottle of Chablis, Fabrice’s friend, another resident of the island, told me that if you drink the last glass of a bottle of wine it means you’ll be married in a year. I laughed. I’ve finished off many bottles of wine in my lifetime, no wedding bells. That’s when the FC chimed in and said, “Yes, but not in France.” I smiled. It’s so great how the FC can make jokes like that without feeling embarrassed or awkward. No matter what happens between us after this trip, I’ll never regret knowing him (but I will always regret not having seconds of Fabrice’s tart.)


The name of Fabrice and Regis' cottage.

Address of Fabrice and Regis' house on the island.


The boat arrived at Heliopolis at magic hour, when the FC snapped this perfect picture.

The boat arrived at Heliopolis at magic hour, where the FC snapped this perfect picture.

This couple, friends of Fabrice and Regis, also own a cottage on the island. The gentleman in the T-shirt is the one who poured me the last of the Chablis.

This couple, friends of Fabrice and Regis, also own a cottage on the island. The gentleman in the T-shirt is the one who poured me the last of the Chablis.


View of sea from beach at Heliopolis.

Naked beauty: View of the sea from the beach at Heliopolis.

July 28th, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !

I don’t know the recipe for love,  but I do know the recipe for romance:








1 cute guy that really digs you.




Don’t question. Just enjoy.


My friend Brent was right: this trip is the FC’s turn to “cook” for me, and he’s  proving to be a master chef.  He’s kind, attentive, good-humoured always, showing me the best France has to offer.  So far we’ve been to a wedding in an old castle, stayed at a charming “git” (small hotel) in the Lyon region, feasted on some of the best food and wine I’ve had in my life and now we’re staying at a private villa in the Cote Azur.  


I don’t have time to give you a full culinary report (as I write, the F.C. is tugging at my arm to go the Giens market) but I will very soon.


In the mean time, soak up this view.


View from the terrace of the FC's grandparents' villa in Giens, a small village in the Cote D'Azur.

View from the terrace of the FC's grandparents' villa in Giens, a small village in the Cote D'Azur.

July 24th, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !

While I’m in France, hopefully basking in the Mediterranean sunshine, I’ll be sharing a few links and factoids like this to keep you sated.

KEANU REEVES (who is famous for being the best-read and smartest man in Hollywood) READS A FOOD BOOK THAT BLOWS HIS MIND: 


Hm. I wonder if Keannu would be interested in guest blogging? I still haven’t found any “cocks that cook” ready and willing to share their food romancing stories.






July 23rd, 2009 Uncategorized | 1 Comment



I have a confession to make. In yesterday’s post I was holding back. We didn’t just make a mushroom appetizer; we went a step further. After talking about love and mushrooms and Alex’s committmentphobic boyfriend for two hours, I was so famished I decided to make a proper dinner. Alex was into it too (unlike dating stand-offish boys, cooking makes you feel in control and that anything’s possible with a little imagination and faith.)


If you’ve read this blog before, you know how I feel about risotto. It’s one of my favourite dishes. I also needed a 20 minute arm work out since the FC and I are leaving tomorrow for a vacation in the South of France and I’m still not bikini-ready.


I’d been meaning to make a simple lemon risotto for ages, and since our Mushroom Lovers Appetizer ruled out my standard risotto recipe, this was a good time. We were also craving seafood, something grilled…


When we landed at the Metro fish counter, the Tiger Shrimp enticed us. In the produce section a fat bunch of apspargus said “Take us too.”


I love cooking with my friend Alexandra because we really “jam” out the concept. After some discussion, we decided to marinate the shrimp without any sourness (like lemon or wine) only chilli flakes, olive oil, garlic and sea salt, this way the lemon of the risotto would provide the tangy kick.


The result was incredible, and the picture barely does it justice. Each element, the lemon risotto, the chillied garlic shrimp, the salty charred aspargus, gave its own flavour and texture; no overstepping, no competing, just complimenting. In other words, the perfect threesome.


This threesome soon became six when Brent, the F.C. and my other C.F’s (Gaetano and Marc) came by to join our feast.


Four out of four cocks agreed, this dish rocks.


Grilled Tiger Shrimp with Lemon Risotto and Aspargus


This recipe served six people, with two shrimp each. Utterly satisfying and perfectly portioned (ie, no gluttony hangover.)


For the Grilled Components


12 Tiger Shrimp, peeled and deveined
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
pinch hot chilli flakes
2 cloves garlic coarsely chopped
A bunch aspargus, thickish, steps trimmed


Marinate shrimp in oil, chilli and garlic and parsley. Set aside. In a separate bowl, toss asparagus with olive oil and sea salt (lots of it.)


For the Lemon Risotto


I adapted this recipe from who adapted it from Bon Appetit. I made only a few small changes, like choosing organic stock and reducing the amount of butter.




6-8 cups organic chicken broth (the original called for canned, but I just mix organic stock with water, two to one, to save pennies)
2 tablespoons butter (the original was 3 1/2, but this seemed unnecessary)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large shallots, chopped
2 cups arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 ounces)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoon chopped chives
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (I increased this to 3, for more lemony kick and I think 4 would be okay too.)
4 teaspoons grated lemon peel


Bring broth to simmer in large saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; cover to keep warm. Melt 1 tablespoons butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and saute until tender, about 6 minutes. Add rice; stir 1 minute. Add wine and stir until evaporated, about 30 seconds. Add 1 1/2 cups hot broth; simmer until absorbed, stirring frequently. Add remaining broth 1/2 cup at a time, allowing broth to be absorbed before adding more and stirring frequently until rice is creamy and tender, about 35 minutes.


When the risotto is five minutes from being done, preheat your barbeque to medium.


When the risotto is done, stir in cheese and remaining 1 tablespoons butter. Stir in parsley, lemon juice, and lemon peel. Season risotto with salt and pepper.


Let risotto sit while you cook the asparagus and shrimp. Cook the shrimp until each side is bright pink (3 minutes a side.) Aspargus can be cooked at this time as well, though if you like your veggie more salty and charred, put them on early, like when you first turn on the grill.


On a plate, serve a cup or the risotto, laying on top two grilled shrimp and two or three aspargus. Sprinkle with extra parmesan. Wow!!

July 22nd, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !

My friend Emma recently broke up with her boyfriend and was feeling sad, mostly because her ex keeps harassing her with late night phone calls, begging her to give him another chance. She won’t. When I asked why, she listed several of his undesirable qualities but for me only one stood out: he hates mushrooms.


“They add nothing to a dish” he’d say, and refused to debate the subject. Emma found this infuriating. For her, mushrooms add a lot. Flavour. Texture. And there are so many different types of mushrooms. How can you just rule them all out?


I agreed, immediately recalling a guy I dated who also hated mushrooms. Every time it came up, I felt annoyed. Did this mean I could never again savour my Risotto Aphrodisio or my Gino Boy Linguini,  two of my favourite dishes, both mushroom-packed? Even when I did try and convert him, sneaking a few mushrooms into a dish, I’d watch, fuming, as he’d pick each one out in disgust.  I realized that I love mushrooms. I need mushrooms in my life and if this culinary ape couldn’t learn to appreciate them, well, it’s just not going to work!


All this to say: The things we love, the foods we love, matter. Yet another reason to cook for cock: it’s a way of seeing if you’re compatible, able to share pleasures, not just in the bedroom, but in the kitchen too.


Fortunately the F.C. loves mushrooms as much as I do.  He hates olives,  but I don’t mind because I don’t need olives in my life, just in my martinis.



Alex G and I won't let any man get between us and our love of the mighty champignon.


Mushroom Lovers Appetizer


When I asked my friend and amazing cook Alexandra G. for a mushroom-starring recipe, she proposed this yummy appie. It’s perfect for a small party, which ended up happening last night, when two of my jazz musician friends dropped by to jam. (Good thing too, otherwise Alex and I would have eaten the whole batch!) As usual, Brent, this blog’s biggest fan and contributor, was on hand to take some photos. (He says he’s just in it for the food.)



1 cup mozarella grated (mozarella is mild, letting the parsley shine, but grated parmesan and Asiago would also be very good and improve presentation, since mozarella tends to melt out, as you can see in the photo.)

20 button mushrooms

5 tablespoons of parsley (reserving one for garnish)

3-4 gloves garlic, finely chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon butter


Alexandra taste tests yummy mushroom filling.

Alexandra taste tests yummy mushroom filling.



1. Preheat oven to 400.

2. Clean mushrooms and remove stem from mushrooms twisting off, gently. Finely chop stems.

3.. Sautee garlic in olive oil, butter. Brown. Add the 4 tablespoons of parsely and chopped mushroom. Cook for another 3 minutes.

4. Line baking sheet with foil. Place mushrooms head down, then fill each one with a teaspoon of filing. Top with mozarella, pinching the shredded cheese to fit, then gently placing on the mushroom.

5. Place rack in oven and cook for 6 minutes or until cheese melts mushroom hot.

6. Let cool a two minutes, garnish each shroom with reserved parsely and serve.



Okay, presentation could be more dazzling with better cheese control. I'm sure I will be making them again soon, and nail the look. But my doesn't Alexandra look appetizing? That's what really matters.

This sexy Jazz Pianist Cock (JPC)  likes mushrooms just fine.

My friend Gaetano likes mushrooms just fine, no wonder all my girlfriends, and some boyfriends, think he's a babe.

July 21st, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !
Oral fix? My friend Brent is obviously missing his boyfriend, now studying in Vienna.

Oral fix? My friend Brent is obviously missing his boyfriend, Dominic, a classicial violinist now studying in Vienna who also introduced Brent to Nina Simone. Here, Brent is enjoying the fast food at St. Gabriel's public beach. We took a swimming break on our way home from the Biddle's farm.

July 20th, 2009 Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Sonya Biddle grew up working in a family restaurant. Cooking, serving, and cleaning up after customers was a daily grind. During this time,  she had one romantic fantasy: to meet and fall in love with a man who did all the cooking and cleaning. And she did. His name is Alan and they have a beautiful farm in the Quebec countryside which I had the chance to visit again this weekend.


Even better, the farm was crawling with cocks. Roosters, I mean. Apparently her henhouse has more cock then hen (if only Montreal had this problem, here it’s the opposite–too many hot chicks.) And judging from the delicious eggs we had Sunday morning,  Sonya’s hens are getting some serious action.



This cock doesn't cook, but he makes the hen happy, just like the FC, pedaling me around Sonya's catfish pond with his friend Gerardo.


Sonya’s avowed dislike for cooking, though surprising coming from someone living on a farm with a bountiful vegetable garden, reminded me that culinary dynamics vary from couple to couple.  My F.C. doesn’t cook at all (except crepes) and maybe that’s why I like him so much. We compliment each other. By contrast, the ex-A.C. enjoyed cooking too much, and it would sometimes irk me how he took over at dinner parties, showing off his fresh tomatoe gazpacho or herb roasted chicken. I also dated a Russian Cock who made the most amazing avocado strawberry salad. Simple and delectable, the salad impressed, not the stud cooking it.  But for women like Sonya, this would have been a total turn on…


So who are these cocks that cook? What are they like?  How do they connect food with love? We’ll soon find out, as I plan on introducing a new rotating guest column, Cooking For Chick, where boy-gourmands share their very own food romancing stories.


Stay tuned. (Interested guy gourmands feel free to submit something.)


G.F.C Peter and F.C. play with dogs.

G.F.C Peter and F.C. play with the farm's two adorable border collies. They keep the cocks from wandering. (Hm. Maybe I need to get one...?)


My friend Brent doesn't cook, but man, can he chop. To me, that's sexy.

My friend Brent doesn't cook, but man, can he chop. To me, that's sexy.


Broccoli and Sun-Dried Tomato Frittata



Brocolli and sun-dried tomatoes taste amazing together, especially with eggs. I first discovered the winning combination at a Toronto cafe on Queen West. They were the house scramble, and I’ve reproduced it many times since. But this weekend my G.C.F. Peter  (another cock who cooks) opted to try the combination Spanish Style, in a frittata, which worked well for our group, since we were six people and scrambled eggs for that many people can get messy-looking. Here’s Peter’s recipe.




1 TBSP butter
13 eggs
1/2 cup Milk (Peter likes to use Perrier for a lighter fritta)
Dry spices dill, ground chili or flakes a little bit of oregano.
1/4 sundried tomatoes chopped
1 1/2 cups broccoli florets chopped
1/2 Onion (yellow)
Your choice of cheese (Peter used chevre, but the Toronto cafe used asiago.)
Fresh ground pepper.




1. Turn on broiler oven
2. Start with butter in a 2” deep oven proof pan on stove top
3. Add dry spices onion, broc and sun-dried tomatoes Fry for 5-8 minutes (enough for onon and broc to soften)
4. Add egg/milk/perrier mixture
5. Let set on stovetop over medium heat then cover for 5-8 minutes.
6. Add cheeses on top and place pan middle shelf in oven and broil ‘till golden
7. Salt to taste and serve right in the pan with hot sauce or tobasco on the side.

July 18th, 2009 Uncategorized | Leave a comment !

After reading Reciprocating For Cock,  one reader said she was fed up wasting her culinary artistry on unworthy cock. So she’s decided to stop cooking for cock. No more breakfasts for one night stands. No more second date gourmet dinners.  She said, “Holding back on cooking is what holding out on homebase was 20 years ago. It’s the New Abstinence.”


Interesting idea. Does that mean she’s going to become a cook-tease?  You know, talking about all the great meals she’s made for other people. “Oh, you should have tried the cornmeal-crusted rack of lamb I made last night. Divine!” and “This triple layer chocolate cake cooling on my counter?  It’s for a friend– Don’t touch! ” and “Yeah, some people call me a culinary magician. I don’t disagree– So, where are you taking me for dinner tonight?” 


But I still say that’s only going to work for so long before you have to “put out.”   People who want love in their life usually want food too.