Thursday, March 26, 2009

Trish Deseine...

My shelves in the kitchen are groaning under the weight of all the cookbooks I've accumulated over the years. From Delia to Nigella, the Barefoot Contessa to Gordon Ramsay and Elizabeth David, I have a good collection of recipes, full of old favorites and inspiration for when I fancy trying something new.

The problem I have with the various cookbooks is that all the measurements are different (some ounces, some grams, some cups, etc.), and of course, most of these are in English, which means I have to find the French equivalent for some of the ingredients (corn syrup, molasses, shortening come to mind as hard to find sometimes.).

So I thought I'd go on the lookout for some French recipe books to add to my collection. Imagine my surprise when I found out that the queen of French cookery writing is actually an Irish woman called Trish Deseine. I'm sure some of you may of heard of her already as she has published several bestselling cookery books and has made a few cookery programs, but I guess I must have been hiding under a rock while all of this was happening; I had no idea.

An Irish woman who moved to Paris in the 80's to marry her French partner, Trish apparently started taking cooking seriously to prove herself to her French in-laws. (For those of you married to Frenchmen, I can only imagine how daunting it must have been to cook for your in-laws for the first time!)

Over the years, she became more and more serious about it and was eventually approached by a French publisher who asked her to write a cookery book. Her first book, Petits Plats Entre Amis appeared in 2001, and she's written 6 further best-selling books in French, writes a bimonthly cookery column for French Elle, won various French cookery prizes, and is now being published in English, with Trish's French Kitchen.

Think I might have to try Je Veux du Chocolat!, nothing like judging a book by its cover!


My open roads said...

Visiting from a link on "These Days in French life" blog...

You know, I also have so many cookbooks and unfortunately not enough time to try all those recipes... so I cleaned up my cookbook shelf one day and set the books that I most rarely opend aside, then gave them away to friends who visited... Wouldn't you know, over the next little while while visiting these friends, I was admiring the lovely dishes they prepared, and recipes they used were mostly from the books they took from my 'spare' piles!!! Made me so happy that finally these books are not only dust collectors but I felt a little imbarrased to ask for recipes. ;)))

Ksam said...

Thanks for the tip, I'll have to check her books out (always happy to support other foreigners in France!!).

And I've had some luck finding corn syrup (sirop de maïs) and molasses (mélasses) at bio stores, at really reasonable prices. I'm sure if you asked, they'd order some in for you!

Tessa said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


The Duchess said...

Thanks for the molasses and corn syrup info, KSam. For some reason, all the cakes I want to make at the moment seem to call for molasses!