2 More recipes from my new cookbook


This week the kids started school again*. Again. Strangely enough they were happy about it and so was I. Not because the house is quieter (and besides it’s not really that quiet with a 2-year-old and a newborn and loads of dogs), not because I’ve grown tired of summer and am now longing for autumn colors and mushrooms and chilly morning walks. Not because I need an excuse to buy a winter coat or because I’ve had too many tomatoes or because Christmas can’t come soon enough.

When I write this blog the words leave my head and I never really meet them again. I don’t reread my old blog posts for some reason. This means I may often repeat myself or even worse, contradict myself. There is no fact checking department in my brain. What’s happening then and there just falls onto the page or into the pot and then I move on until I have a new feeling or recipe to share. Even if it’s sometimes and old familiar feeling or the same exact feeling I had at the same exact time the year before.

I have this feeling that last year around the same time I wrote that everything was perfect. That this was the best season of all. That’s how I feel now, the glow of summer is still on my cheeks and the cheeks of my children. The tomato plants in the garden may be slowly winding down but they still have a few good crates of fruits left in them. The figs are out in force this week, the pumpkins are on the horizon. The weather is still great.

In other words: there is a lot to be happy about. But for me, this year, there is an added sense of excitement and anticipation in the air. Around the same time last year our pop-up restaurant here at 1 rue de Loudenne was in its final days, early in September we closed the doors for the last time, the little team went their separate ways. All that was left were recipes and memories and stories badly arranged in my head. Soon they got restless and cramped up there (I have a rather small head) and found their way onto the page – although not as soon as my editor would have liked (deadlines are not my forte). It’s all been coming to life, piece by piece, recipe by recipe over the course of the last year. But this summer things went silent. It was the period when the book is out of your hands, there is nothing more you can do, only wait. I’m not good at waiting.

As I am writing this I’m anxiously waiting for a first copy that’s ready (my editor says it’s stunning – her words) and was sent to me yesterday. Now it’s 5 o’clock and I think it won’t come today, a little disappointing but tomorrow it’s Friday and maybe that’s an even better day to receive it. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

The question is, can I have Champagne tonight as consolation or do I have to wait for tomorrow’s celebration?

The book is coming out on October 25th, which is a little bit further away than tomorrow night I admit, and so I wanted to share two more recipes from the book that I think are very appropriate for this magical season of late summer, early fall.

Soon the last tomato will leave the stage, a stage already filling with gorgeous apples. Right now is the rare, beautiful season when we can enjoy them both.

*The kids may be happy about going back to school because with all the chores their father gives them in the summer in the vegetable garden, with the dogs and puppies and in our monstrously big house – school may seem like a vacation – at least that’s my theory 🙂





Tomato Gazpacho
serves 4 to 6

For the last two years we have been growing our own tomatoes in the little vegetable garden down the road from our house. We have experimented with several different varieties: small cherry tomatoes for my veal stew and for casual bruschetta, ripe green and yellow tomatoes that are great in salads. But my favorite is the deep red, meaty, coeur de boeuf that tastes so much better than anything you can buy in stores. I love slicing a big juicy one, giving it a generous glug of good olive oil, sprinkling it with fleur de sel, and savoring it. They also make excellent gazpacho. While I used to make gazpacho with cucumbers and peppers in addition to the tomatoes, when you have really, really good tomatoes, you don’t need anything more, only a little bread for substance and some garlic to spice everything up.

½ cup / 120 ml heavy cream
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
12 thin slices baguette
fine sea salt

1 ½ cups / 115 g crumbled stale white bread
2 pounds / 900 g very ripe tomatoes, diced
2 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
2/3 cup / 150 ml extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon piment d’espelette or mild chile powder, for serving

MAKE THE GARNISH. In a small bowl, whisk together the cream and minced garlic. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. Just before serving, pass the cream through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing on the garlic to release all its flavor.

In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and cook the slices of bread until golden, about 30 seconds per side. Drain the croutons on a paper towel. Season with salt.

MAKE THE SOUP. Soak the bread in a bowl of cool water for 10 minutes, then drain, and squeeze out as much water as possible.

In a large bowl, combine the bread, tomatoes, garlic cloves, olive oil, and vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Purée the mixture, preferably using an immersion blender, until you have a smooth and velvety mixture. Pass the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve, then cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 1 hour.






If you didn’t read my last post, or have simply forgotten, we are offering a cute little kitchen notebook to those of you who already have or will order the cookbook before it comes out next month. I have noticed during the workshops that people like writing down their own notes and explanations and experiences with the recipes and while I have nothing against writing in the cookbook itself, sometimes you just need more space. Besides, it’s neater.

Anyone who preorders the book before October 25th will get a special, pocket-sized notebook for keeping notes and planning meals.

To receive the notebook all you have to do is sign up here and provide proof that you have preordered French Country Cooking. The many who have already preordered the book are of course also eligible for the notebook.

French Country Cooking‘ available for preorder at:

Barnes & Noble

And for Canada




Baked Apples with Spéculoos
serves 8

Spéculoos are simple, tasty, spiced cookies you can find almost everywhere in various versions and different levels of quality. I’ve always liked to play around with them, include them in tarts and desserts. They go very well with pears, apples, and plums; in summer I like to make a plum tart with a spéculoos-crusted base. In the months leading up to Christmas, we have so many apples around the house that I like to put them to use, often in tarts but also on their own, which I find is a chic way to serve them. This is a humble, uncomplicated dessert, perfect for the days before Christmas, when you have no time to make an elaborate recipe but are aching for a little sweet something to round off a meal.

8 apples
6 ½ tablespoons / 90 g unsalted butter
8 spéculoos cookies
¼ cup / 50 g sugar

Preheat the oven to 400°F / 200°C.

Slice off the top part of the apples, making a little “hat,” and core the apples, leaving a little of the bottom intact. Put the apples in a baking dish and stick about 1 teaspoon of butter into the center of each. Crumble a spéculoos cookie into each one and divide the remaining butter among the apples, dabbing it on top of the cookie. Sprinkle the sugar over the apples and top the apples with their “hats.”

Transfer the dish to the oven and bake until the apples are golden and tender, about 25 minutes. Serve immediately.


93 thoughts on “2 More recipes from my new cookbook

  1. Hi Mimi, my family and I had a wonderful 2 weeks in Listrac and I loved your village St. Yzans and the antique shop, Cafe Lavinal, soulac sur mer, and the pink chateau. Can’t wait for the book!! My best, Clare

  2. Mimi, have a glass of champagne tonight . . . and a glass tomorrow night and the night after that. You deserve it.

    And like Clare, I, too can’t wait for the book to arrive. I’ll definitely have a glass of bubbly that night!

    Good things,

  3. Mmmm! Gazpacho is a favorite and I love trying new versions. In Spain, I ordered it every time I saw it on the menu and it was completely different each time.
    Your photos are, as always, as beautiful as your writing.
    Question: how did you deal with French bureaucracy with a pop-up? URSSAF and licenses and all that? It is so at odds with something as ephemeral as a pop-up. Also, just hiring short-term is tough. A friend has a restaurant at a campground and can’t find nearly enough staff because nobody wants to work for just two months. I am so interested in how entrepreneurs cope.

    1. The Gazpacho is extra good this year, all because the tomatoes from our garden but also at the market are as good as any I’ve ever had. Regarding French bureaucracy it can be heavy but our community has been very welcoming and helpful and since what we did was only a family pop-up there were no actual hires of staff, just friend helping friends making dinners for new friends 🙂 Mimix

  4. Oh lovely. I will go pre-order now, I’ve been waiting for this book since the last time I re-read your first book 🙂

    I hope you are well and that your little boy has spaced out his feeding a bit. My 7 wk old boy nurses hourly which leaves me with little time to start cooking fall recipes that I long for!

    1. Congrats Josephine! Thank you so much for ordering! I am feeling more ‘human’. 🙂 Lucian is getting better and better at night, so I feel like I am finally catching up with sleep. Wishing you all the best. xx

  5. Quel beau moment de l’année… Et comme toi. Hate d’avoir ce nouveau bijou entre les mains sans avoir hate que les jours plus froids n’arrivent. Quel bel avant goût de ce qui nous attend! Merci pour ce gaspacho à la tomate, totalement de saison! Et bravo pour l’occitane, on ne pouvait rêver mieux!
    A tres vite à Paris j’espère!
    Prends soin de toi
    Bises cecile

    1. Merci chère Cécile – je suis folle de joie. Un nouveau livre, c’est comme une naissance. Et oui, nous l’avons reçu – il est magnifique (pour moi en tout cas!). J’ai déjà partagé la photo sur IG – trop contente! 😉 xx

  6. It’s always a good idea to serve yourself a glass of champagne. I’m sure your new book will be a success and i wish you all the best for everything.
    I’ll wait for your info about your new book in italian , if it’s due for fall 2016 or 2017.
    You have my deep congratulations for all your wonderful work .
    Xx Valentina

  7. You look genuinely happy & healthy, lots to be thankful for, it’s good to see, continued blessings and continue the good work!

  8. I just made your recipe of the potatoes à la Lyonnaise last night and flipped through the pages of “A Kitchen in France” excited for your next published work (which is mentioned in the Fall issue of Domino Magazine by the way). I can’t wait. Merci pour votre passion et vos idées.

  9. Mimi,
    It is so refreshing to read a blog whose author doesn’t feel obligated to post everyday or on a regular basis.
    Bonne fin d’été à vous et à votre jolie petite famille!

  10. I have returned for my annual September in Paris, and am just wishing I could return this year for another of your workshops! But, on another note, I was walking down the street across from Le Bon Marche yesterday and there was a lovely big picture of you and two of your girls in the L’Occitane window!!!! I was taking a picture and the shopkeeper came out and we had such a fun time talking about how amazing you are!!! L’Occitane covergirl!!! What next??!?!

      1. Oh my!!!! I just watched the videos and they are fabulous!!! They show you just the way you are, classy, fresh and interesting!!! So fun to see the children…. Too bad Odurr

        1. I was checking the spelling of Oddur’s name and it posted! I was saying that it was too bad Oddur didn’t make it! I think you should do a post on this!

  11. I think you should drink champagne from now until the book goes on sale as you’ve worked hard and done beautiful work, as usual! Celebrate! From there, only a few short weeks to Christmas. 🙂

  12. Thanks, Mimi, for sharing these new recipes. I’ll be cooking them for my book club next week and touting your new book, to boot! What do you think about serving the soup warm? With a simple salad with end-of-season figs? And a little freshly whipped vanilla cream with the apples? Your recipes are SO inspiring! Enjoy your champagne (you should drink it whenever you can!) and the preview of the finished book. Can’t hardly wait until 25 October!

    1. Hi Dawn, Thank you so much for all the cheers! For the gazpacho, I personally don’t think it’s a good idea to serve it warm. However, you should make a tomato soup with stock (chicken for example), throw in diced tomatoes, onions, a few sliced carrots. That’s delicious! And yes to vanilla cream with the apples! (or even ice-cream!) Yay! Mimix

  13. Oh, Mimi, I could get lost at that wonderful table with tomato gazpacho. What a photo!! what a recipe!! Same for the apples on a chalkboard – stunning. It was a surprise and a treat to see your instagram post with Ms Turshen’s recipes on your table. Your book and hers are the only ones I’ve preordered this season. Autumn is my favorite season and you touched on all the reasons why – especially the anticipation of Christmas. After I got your first book I had to go get more for Christmas gifts, and it looks like your second book is another treasure. Posting a few of your recipes sure does make it easier to wait! Thanks, Mimi !! xx Linny

    1. Thank you dear Linny! We just received the first copy and I am overjoyed! And Julia is such a lovely person, I am so happy to hear your ordered her book too! Big hugs, Mimi x

  14. We are so excited to see the new book, my sweet daughter ordered one for each of us as I surprised her with the previous cookbook and we’ve both enjoyed it so much.
    I am beginning to feel a slight bit of fall in the air lately and can’t wait to fire up the oven and get into some fun and serious cooking! Thank you for all your inspiring recipes as well as the gorgeous photos!

  15. Your posts always captivate me and you write from the heart, which I love. I have your first cookbook and I’m delighted you have written another. I like to read your first one like a book! Kindest Regards x

  16. Mimi,
    I love reading your updates.
    I’ve pre-ordered your book and can’t wait to read it when it comes out in October.

  17. Perhaps the book did arrive this evening, across the Gironde Estuary we usually get deliveries with chronopost and fedex until 6pm. So maybe a glass of champagne was called for, but either way I think you should have had a glass anyway and celebrate both today and tomorrow and the weekend too. It’s such a great achievement and the cover looks stunning. If it is anything like the first one we are all in for another fabulous autumnal treat, I personally can’t wait, the first book I have is looking very well worn, there is cocoa powder smudged over the page of the chocolate meringues, a firm favourite dessert all summer long and the pages throughout are looking rather dog eared from over use! xx

    1. Hello! How was your summer? The book arrived today 🙂 Yay! Oddur and I were like 2 hawks, waiting anxiously for the delivery van to arrive. I am overjoyed, the book is exactly what I wished for. I just can’t wait for Oct 25!! I am so happy to hear you are enjoying my first book, thank you! You make me happy! Mimi x

  18. The best thing about Champagne is that it doesn’t require any excuse to drink it! I hope you had it anyway! I simply can’t wait for the cookbook, but since I must the new recipes ease the pain. Thank you!

  19. Ce blog est un rappel constant que chaque saison a ses couleurs, mais aussi ses saveurs. Cela vaut bien en soi un ou deux verres de champagne. J’ai très hâte de pouvoir feuilleter ce 2e ouvrage. Merci de partager ces moments et ces recettes avec nous!

    1. Merci Annie! Quel bonheur de vivre en harmonie avec chaque saison. Pour moi, Septembre est le mois le plus généreux, nous avons de tout! Je vous souhaite une belle saison! Mimi x

  20. Thanks for the recipes! We had your gazpacho at your pop-up restaurant last year and it was divine… Gaia looks so much like her daddy in that photo 🙂

  21. Dear Mimi–I love reading your blog posts and will certainly order a copy of the new cookbook. I wanted to let you know that your blog was a lifesaver to me last year when we were living in Pau, France. I was feeling a little lost and homesick and my French wasn’t yet good enough to read recipes and follow instructions! I found your blog and felt that I had found the best of all possible worlds. Thank you for the care and attention you give to the recipes, local cuisine and wine and helping us all remember how much we are connected to this planet.

    1. Thank you so much Valerie, and I am so happy to hear that my blog was a lifesaver in your kitchen! 🙂 I recently went to the Languedoc region, where my grandmother is originally from, so I picked up lots of wonderful local recipes and can’t wait to share them on the next blog post. Mimi x

  22. Does the new book have a recipe for these Speculoos cookies? O
    I need a cookie recipe for my cookie exchange in December. I’m coming back next April with Kathleen & will bring some recipes to share. Can’t wait to meet the newest family member!! Hi
    to All!!! Xxxm

    1. Hello Margot! So great to hear from you! Speculoos cookies are great because they taste delicious on their own, and I also use them as a base for tarts and pies (mixed with butter). I’ll send you a recipe by email asap! Thrilled to have you back soon, Kathleen will be here in October, so exciting aka St Christoly 🙂 Miss you!. Mimix

  23. Very pleasant surprise thank you. Recipes are always well received, and strangely, just 2 hours ago we were discussing how impossible it was to purchase an apple corer!! Mystery solved 50km away, and of course ‘made in France’! Baked apples with speculoos await!! Happy Autumn, seasons are most welcome: would be really dull without. Spring here, you feel the stored energy that is ‘bud burst’. P.S. There are more reasons to drink champagne than days in the week: enjoy!

      1. Mimi, many thanks for the link: straight through to the ‘correct house on busiest street in the universe’! Really enjoyed.

    1. Coucou Anne-Marie! Tu nous manques!! De retour pour cette rentrée qui s’annonce fort ‘excitante’! Lucian se porte bien, le nouveau livre va sortir… j’ai hâte que tu passes à la maison! Viens-vite nous voir. Bises, Mimix

      1. Hello Mimi, vous me manquez tous aussi après ce bel été qui se prolonge. Je passerai avec plaisir, un après midi, pour voir les enfants, je t’appellerai dans la semaine pour savoir quand ce sera possible. Je vous embrasse très fort, il me tarde vraiment de vous revoir.
        Anne Marie xx

  24. My late mother firmly believed that one does not need an excuse to drink champagne. It is good to lift your spirits when you are sad and good to celebrate with when you are happy. I always keep a bottle or two in the fridge at all times. Bois une flûte.

  25. Bonjour Mimi
    C’est toujours un plaisir de lire vos nouveaux articles et de faire vos délicieuses recettes. Pouvez-vous me dire si vous allez continuer votre collaboration avec le magazine Elle? J.appreciais beaucoup vos fiches cuisine

  26. Dear Mimi!
    So happy to hear that the book arrived and you got the champagne. Let’s celebrate!
    Thank you for sharing recipes, because we have to get many glasses of champagne until October!
    The children are so grown from last time I saw them! Big hugs for the beautiful family, I still listen some music from our workshop.

  27. SPECULOOS cookies???I hope you have a PHOTO I have NO IDEA what they are.
    Once again you have a SPELL over me….love your intro to this POST!
    YES, you can OPEN a BOTTLE tonight!
    YOU DESERVE IT……….start at LUNCH!
    WAITING for OCTOBER and the MAIL!!!!!!!BIG HUGS to ALL……..XOXO

    1. They are originally Belgian cookies. We get them everywhere, and they are often served with coffee. I love using them as a tart/pie base, so delicious! We’ve opened the bottle, it arrived today! 🙂 Big kiss, Mimi x

      1. Hello Mimi, Can’t wait for your lovely book. In the meantime I want to serve the luscious baked apples. I live in Texas, US, and managed to locate the Speculoos cookies at Trader Joe’s! My problem now is choosing the right apple. We have so many varieties of Apple that I wonder if you could help out with a name? Thank you so much. I can already smell that scent Mmmmmmmm! xj

      2. Hi Mimi – I found the Speculoos cookies at a store in Texas called Trader Joe’s. I left you a message asking what apples you like to use, obviously that you grow. But today I have bought three different kinds: Fuji, Golden Delicious, and Jonagold. Am going to prepare them now and will advise my results – All Yum, of course!!

  28. It needs to be said over and over again there is something so special about you, Mimi. You embody a uniquely “fresh” interpretation of not only French cooking but a home that that reflects a juxtaposed of old world charm and a little bit of the 21st century; sprinkled continually with the gracefulness of hugs and kisses. You have an affinity for sharing your beauty and talent with your readers and for this I am forever grateful! I always look forward to each and every new recipe, photograph and story. Thank you for allowing us to live this Fairytale with you. Can’t wait for the new Cook Book! ❤️

  29. Great recipes. I look forward to your new book. We are from Australia. At the moment we are holidaying in Lacanau, my husband and I and my son, partner and their daughter, who is half French. We love it here, been here a week and another week here then off to Biarritz for 2 weeks. This part of France is truly beautiful.

  30. Hi Mimi, I love your recipes and have used them numerous times (I’ve just recently made your Italian pear cake!). Just wondering if there is a date for the book to be released in the UK? Thank you and congratulations! xxx

  31. Dearst Mimi,
    I’d love to order your book, but I am waiting for the german vision. Do you know already when this will happen?
    I can’t wait to have a look at it. Since I’ve discovered your homepage, I find myself more and more in the kitchen. I keep on trying new recipes and I’m not so afraid anymore, that things will not look or taste as good as it looks in your book. My mom died very early and I never had the chance to learn how to cook as much as I wished for. I love your first cookbook very, very much. When I need a little break, I’ll take your book and a glas of wine or a coffee and look through all those beautiful pages. We just got back from our vacation in italy (Piemont) and I noticed how much more I appreciate food and wine since I read your articles. Thank you so much (also your husband) for all the inspiration you brought into my life!
    All the best for you and your lovely family. Heike from Germany

  32. Oh my goodness!! Your blog simply transports me and inspires me. Thank you for that. The notebook that goes with the cookbook, my imagination runs wild, does Anna Bond have a hand in the design? I do L O V E the blog header? Rifle Paper Company is so sublime as R U Mimi. keep up the good work- I suppose that would sound so much better in French. Bon Appitit.

  33. Hi Mimi, Beautiful photos as always!. I don’t think we have Speculoos in Australia. We do have a Dutch Spiced biscuit, maybe that would be a substitute? Also, would love to order your cookbook but have 3 vegetarians living with us, so wondered if there are vegie dishes in the book.
    Many thanks Lynne x

  34. Managed to secure your previous book via a friend who visited the USA. Would very much like to get hold of your new book. How can I do so in the UK?

  35. New Book pre-purchased (yippee) and I am keen to use a note pad.
    I made the pan-seared chicken breasts and spring onions (pp48-49, A Kitchen in France), awesome… I added potatoes with some parsley and some asparagus. I cooked the asparagus a little in the ‘sauce” and then popped them in the oven with the chicken.

    best wishes,
    Nicole (Adelaide, Australia)

  36. Such a beautiful post; this moment, poised on the brink of autumn, is special every year and stands repeating. The photographs are gorgeous, as ever, and I can’t wait for your book to come out. I’m looking forward to it so much!

    As an aside, would it be possible to have a post about what it’s like to live with Smooth Fox Terriers, please? I think they are such beautiful dogs, and would really like to know more about them.

  37. Hi Mimi, we love your blog, just ordered your book and are considering moving our young family to France – tell me… your children do they go to a local day school or board during term time at an international or private school? Keep up the great work, Alex

  38. I greet the Polish, from Mazovia. I bought your first book – is translated in my country. I read, watch, and I look with pleasure. Not only recipes – I love the atmosphere of what you tell. I love the pictures of your męża- I will not hide the fact that the photos were an important element of intent to purchase. Watch them in touch, not on the screen, it is a special pleasure.
    I am waiting for the Polish edition of the second part.

  39. Belle surprise au retour du boulot! Ma copie de French country cooking est arrivée avec quelques jours d’avance! Les photos sont magnifiques et le 1 rue de Loubenne: quelle merveilleuse idée. Reste à savoir par quelle recette commencer! Merci Mimi pour toute cette inspiration!

  40. I just received my pre ordered copy and it is stunning! Loving all the recipes so far. Can’t wait to get cooking. A kitchen in France is still used so much to this day. Your Soupe au Pistou being a favourite! Can’t wait to see what our favourites will be from this new book. Congrats Mimi to you and your family!

  41. Coucou Mimi!
    Est-ce qu’il y aura une version française de “French Country Cooking”?
    Merci d’avoir partager vos belles recettes💛
    Stéphanie de Jerusalem xx

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