Category Archives: Food

Anything I like to share with you on French cuisine.

A real Chef de Cuisine on Vacation

Sometimes you need to be naughty to get somewhere. This time I invited Chef de Cuisine Brice BUFFET of Les Échevins to come to the water mill. I’ve written about the restaurant earlier since it’s by far the best place to go for dinner around Tourteron. But to be honest: I didn’t make that initial call. It was my dear French friend Corinne who has absolute joy in helping me out in French. As you might guess Fr <> Fr works twice as fast.

The chef came with his wife and son to talk about catering at Supergîtes. We showed the family around and talked about the project and what we are looking for. Brice was very enthusiastic. Without hesitation he told us to be honored to serve his Haute Cuisine at the mill. We were astonished. To say the least.

We asked him to send a sous-chef or some young intern cook to prepare the food. Continue reading

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Eating nearby: “Pretty Food and tasting even Better”

You have places where you eat and places where you have dinner. To our big surprice we discovered one in Mouzon. For sure we’re not the first: Les Échevins is in Michelin’s Guide Rouge and deserves this BIG time.

Each year, on my birthday, right between Christmas and New Year, we go hunting for a good restaurant in the French country side. This year we bumped into Les Échevins (the Aldermen) in the center of Mouzon, a peaceful quiet town with a huge church and an old city gate. It used to be of some importance but lost this stature centuries ago.

Les Échevins is an absolute MUST go if you stay around. The food does not only look pretty but it’s a feast for the taste buds.

A Taste Bud Melting Starter

Restaurant Les Échevins
33 r. Charles de Gaulle
F – 08210 Mouzon

Téléphone : 03 24 26 10 90
E-mail :
Website :

19€ (weekday lunch),
26€/51€ – Menu: 32€/46€

Cuisine – à la mode. A welcoming rustic restaurant in a 17C half-timbered building. Well-priced, daily-changing menus with precise cooking and direct flavours. Impeccable service.

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Dreaming of Christmas

Who'll join us in 2010?

I know we promised ourselves in March we’d have our first Christmas in front of this fireplace this year. Well, we’re frowning today because we know for sure we won’t make it. No hard feelings though.

Just looking at the fire makes me dream away: the scent of burning logs, the picture of a huge 12-f00t-tall tree full of decorations (and we have enough, since I started collecting Christmas decorations when I was 18). I imagine our best friends drinking wine and eating petit fours or some other sweet treats. The table will be set in white linen with our best crystal. The huge living room will be full of warmth, laughter, and our energy. On the menu are my îles flottantes in lobster soup, a light salad with Peking duck, a bitter ice, some roasted meat with turnip, a plateau of French cheeses, and a minty honey sabayon.

So, who wants to opt in for 2010?

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Eating nearby: “French Family Food”

Only 8km away, we’ve found this sweet restaurant next to the canal and locks at Neuville-Day. It’s cozy, humble, and simple with not too complicated but well-presented food that is quite tasty. It’s the perfect place to walk to and back from if you enjoy hiking. Their homemade goose liver paté is really great–and they do serve a lot!

We haven’t tried it in winter yet, but in summer the setting–a terrace along the canal– is superb.

Foie gras en Neuville-Day

Restaurant ‘AU SANS SOUCI’
La Coquée

Téléphone : 03 24 30 19 58
Fax : 03 24 71 72 42

Menus ardennais. ‘Ravioles du sans-souci’, ‘Minerai ardennais’ foie gras maison, décors en sucre. Vente sur place de produits du terroir.

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10 Things French you instantly like (with recipes)

Here are 10 ‘sweet’ recipes from the famous French kitchen. I consider myself a ‘chef’, although I only cook when we have guests. Call me lazy, but it’s true! These 10 recipes represent some of the easiest ways to impress your guests. They are simple and fast and – with one exception– sweet. The recipes have been picked randomly; I hope they are all as good when you make them as I have written here! 😛

tarte Tatin

Tarte Tatin is probably the most famous apple pie there is. Besides that it’s easy to make, it looks good, smells perfect, and tastes like heaven. For a guy like me who’s not that much into sugar, it’s great. If you have a sister, make one when she’s coming. She’ll forever love you – unless her name is Suzette.

crêpes Suzette

Crêpes (pancakes) are eaten all over the world. There are Dutch ones, American ones, even Korean ones. But in France they are the best. They are thin and sweet. You can get them on almost every corner of the bigger city centres. You can have them with any sweet topping you’d like. I prefer these Suzettes with Grand Marnier.

iles flottante

It’s just a miracle to see those foamy balls of beaten egg white in the yellow vanilla soup. As a child I was a huge fan. Now it’s just toooooo sweet. Another warning: Don’t try this at home after a few courses. 😛


This sweet cake-kinda-bread matches perfectly with foie gras. It’s really good when you make it yourself and eat it while it’s still slightly warm.


Macarons are a traditional French pastry, made of egg whites, almond powder, icing sugar and sugar. No wonder they’re sweet. This chocolate recipe is mouthwatering… A MUST TRY! This is a good thing to prepare with kids, if you can manage to keep some around to eat after the preparation. 🙂

bûche de Noel

This is the thing to eat in France at Christmas…NOT my taste but it is sooo French that it simply has to be in this list. I think these heavy logs are just made of too much butter: it’s all FAT. Brrr.


The croissant is named for its distinctive crescent shape and it’s my every-Sunday starter. I eat them the Dutch way: cut open and filled with either cheese or homemade jam and accompanied by fresh orange juice and coffee. Done.

galette Bretonnes

The only salty recipe in here, but since I love them I thought they couldn’t be left out. A galette is a salty crêpe with toppings like meat, cheese, veggies or eggs. Love ’em!


Possible in any taste thinkable, from sweet to salty. There’s even a great recipe for chicken liver soufflé. Just try a new one every day! 😛

oeufs au lait

The simplest recipe here, and believe me – it’s tastier than you could ever imagine!

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Perfect Tarte Tatin

First step to the Perfect Tarte Tatin: 'melting' the apples

First step to the Perfect Tarte Tatin: 'melting' the apples

Tarte Tatin is an upside-down apple tart in which the apples are caramelized in butter and sugar before the tart is baked.

Tradition says that the Tarte Tatin was first created by accident at the Hotel Tatin in Lamotte-Beuvron, France, in 1898. The hotel was run by two sisters, Stéphanie and Caroline Tatin.

But who cares about the origin if it’s simply the richest type of apple pie on earth. It’s famous all over the world, and it can be made with a zillion variations.

I’ve found a great recipe from BBC Food that I tried the other day with my own apples harvested from the mill’s orchard. 🙂

And, if you prefer Dutch: Probeer dit recept.

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Hitting the first 1000

Reflets de France Cidre

Reflets de France Cidre

I’m really happy to see so many people reading the Super Gîtes Blog. Within three months we’re already hitting the first 1000! Amazing! I appreciate your interest in the blog, so whoever is Mr. or Ms. One Thousand: PLEASE reply to this post immediately and you’ll receive a bottle of Reflets de France Apple Cidre. If you are not from the Netherlands I’ll transfer you the value of a bottle of this cidre through Paypal. 🙂

Happy reading! Merci beaucoup!!


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