September wasn’t a great month for me in regards to French Friday. I couldn’t eat the seared tuna pizza (sadly), and neither of us are fans of piquillo peppers, stuffed or otherwise. And though I really wanted to make the rice pudding and caramel apples, I ended up not having the time for it (that was the week we took our trip to Gloucester). So, for October, I decided to rededicate myself to French Friday and put in every effort to make the chosen recipes.

And I actually did a few! And then I never wrote about them. In fact, I seemed to have forgotten that my blog even existed. I hadn’t. It’s just that I didn’t have the energy or the mental capability to write. I’m getting to that point in pregnancy where I’m pretty much over being pregnant and just want time to pass by quickly. I want it to be December so I can have Niko in my arms. But I also want to enjoy November, which is one of my favorite months. I also want to sleep for 12 hours every day. You can see how conflicted I am. Blogging hasn’t been heavy on my mind lately. I’m working on it.

I actually did not make today’s recipe, which was Muenster Cheese Soufflé. For one thing, I don’t have a proper soufflé dish. For another, I don’t have the wherewithal to deal with a soufflé right now, especially not this week. It’s been a rough week.

Instead, I made Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans, which the group made way back in November 2010. I felt this was an appropriate substitute. Also, it was much, much easier to make.


Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flan topped with walnuts, sour cream, and a drizzle of maple syrup.

I’m not sure if Geordie was completely sold on these flans. Most people tend to associate sweet foods with cooking/baking with pumpkin, and Geordie still seems to be in that camp, even though I have (and will continue to) experiment with savory pumpkin dishes. I’ll admit, this was a bit weird at first, but by the time I was halfway through mine, I was into it. Good thing, too, since I had one left over. That became part of lunch the next day. A nice little pre-Halloween treat, and super easy to make. I love recipes where all I have to do is dump everything into a food processor, blend it, then pour it into ramekins and stick it in the oven. The less work I have to do right now, the better!

Also this month, I made the Salad Niçoise and the Boeuf à la Mode. It was hard for me to write about either of these, because neither of them impressed us. There was no way I was going to get a complete post out for each of these, because they can both be summed up with the word “meh.”

For the sake of this post, I’ll try to do better than that. Let’s start with the Salad Niçoise.


Salad Nicoise: colorful and kind of confused.

I’ve mentioned several times already that I’m not a big salad fan. Especially during pregnancy. Vegetables – while being a very important part of every pregnant lady’s diet – have failed to make me weak in the knees for the past 33 weeks. In fact, I’ve done my best to avoid leafy greens. I want very little to do with them when I’m not pregnant. It’s been a very trying 33 weeks.

Some people like it when meat is added to a salad. I do not. And that goes for canned tuna as well. I’m not overly thrilled with canned tuna anyway, but I will eat it. This isn’t my preferred method of doing so. This was mostly just a mess. There’s a lot going on in this salad, and that may be why I didn’t like it. I had to change a few things to make it acceptable to us: the green beans were replaced by sugar snaps (usually Geordie is less picky than me, but he said no to the green beans, which I would have happily eaten), I left out the anchovies, and I used spinach instead of Boston lettuce, because I couldn’t find Boston lettuce. Not making these changes probably wouldn’t have helped us much. It’s just not our thing.

And then there was the Boeuf à la Mode, a much lauded dish that is basically just a pot roast. Geordie liked the idea of this dinner, because Geordie is definitely a meat-lover. I too like meat, but I’ve never really enjoyed a pot roast. After this, I still haven’t.

Boeuf a la Mode, aka pot roast.

Boeuf a la Mode, aka pot roast.

What can I say, I just don’t like pot roast. I like stews. I like daubes. I like tender beef that really does melt in your mouth, This did not melt in my mouth. It was not particularly tender. Maybe that was my fault. I cooked it an extra twenty minutes (and it really needed those extra twenty minutes, because it was certainly not fork-tender before that), and it probably should have been cooked longer, but pregnant ladies don’t like to wait for dinner. They also don’t like to waste time taking perfect pictures when they’re starving, which is why the picture is kinda blurry.

I served it over egg noodles, along with the carrots that had been cooked with the meat (now, those were tasty, and I wish there had been more of them), plus some roasted Brussels sprouts. Everything but the meat was tasty. I cannot say I was surprised. I just don’t like pot roast. I think I just need to accept that.

And so, that was my French Friday for October. I have no idea how November is going to go, but the recipes are so awesomely tempting that I’m strongly considering making several of them. It all depends on how I’m feeling and how much time I can spend on my feet. We’ll see!

Until then, happy cooking!