Posted by: kathandroger | April 12, 2010

Le fromage anglais

A couple of weeks ago I was back in the UK and bought a selection of local Dorset cheeses for people to try in France. I happened to discover that there were over 700 british cheeses, and on returning to France I mentioned this fact to some of our French friends. I asked them first how many cheeses there were in France, and they proudly replied that there was one for every day. They were then totally incredulous when I told them the british score. Out came the i-phones and searches carried out on Google to prove  that I was wrong. Unfortunately for them…I was right.  The tension in the room was palpable. How could the British have more cheeses than the French? Quel horreur! Keen to maintain good relations with our new-found friends, I managed to ascertain that actually the 350 or so French cheeses were all distinct appellations controllees, and if you compare like for like there are probably nearer 1000 french cheeses. On mentioning this fact the relief was as palpable as the tension had been previously. They knew all along, of course…

We had friends over for dinner on saturday when we broke the good cheese news. So many people have been so kind and friendly to us since we have been here it was a pleasure to be able to welcome some of our new french friends to our home. A good time was had by all, and they seemed particularly impressed by the bread and butter pudding  I made. So much so, in fact that they wanted me to post the recipe. So here goes…

(for a large dish) 1 large brioche ; enough butter to butter each slice of brioche; sultanas and raisins; 12 egg yolks; 225 g sugar; 400 ml cream; 400 ml milk, vanilla pod.

Slice the brioche (you can use bread, but I find brioche tastier and softer) and butter each slice. Arrange a layer on the bottom of the dish, sprinkle with sultanas and raisins (alcohol if you like too). Repeat for the second layer and add a 3rd layer of bread without the dried fruit. Make the custard – put milk and cream and vanilla in a pan and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together. Add the cream/milk mixture slowly, mixing all the time. Pour this over the bread and leave for about 30 mins until the custard has soaked into the brioche. Cover the dish in buttered foil and place in a bain marie in the oven at 180 degrees. It should take about 20-30 mins until the custard has set. Take it our and sprinkle with sugar. Place under the grill and brown, without burning. It is now ready to serve!

Given our boiler packed up a few weeks back, we have got used to the fact that our house it a bit on the cold side. Unfortunately our guests hadn’t. Hence we had to get the snuggle blanket out for Gilles and Landry (or was the cold just an excuse???). Note that Patricia is fine – though she had just supped her was through a bottle and a half of wine!!

Not sure whether it was the snuggle blanket or the company, but this was Landry soon after…

I think a good night was had by all!

Actually it was quite a gastromonic weekend as we visited a fabulous restaurant on Friday at Le Petit Pressigny. Called La Promenade, it is owned by a fairly famous chef called Jacky Dallais and has one Michelin star. This is the second Michelin starred restaurant we have been to in 3 weeks and I have to say it was difficult to pick between the 2. On balance, possibly Dallais just edged it, but is was close.


  1. une fois de plus Kath ,et Roger vous avez brillé par votre gentillesse, votre savoir vivre n’est plus a démontré et votre intégration un pure délisse, tous comme ta cuisine et les vins de Roger, merci pour cette superbe soirée. A charge de revenche

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