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Calling all french people... what are some of those super-simple vegetable first courses that you serve the family?

(26 Posts)
SaltyGoodness Tue 11-Feb-14 15:17:11

I have fond memories of my exchange year, every meal started with a simple - I mean REALLY simple - cold vegetable dish... carrottes rapees with vinaigrette, tomato and sweetcorn, just really really simple things like that. Please tell me some more? Want my DCs to appreciate vegetables the way I learnt to smile

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Tue 11-Feb-14 15:31:31

A bowl of radishes with salt and butter, tomate a la croque au sel (a tomato to bite into with a pinch of salt), celeriac remoulade, just any salad with vinaigrette, apple/celery/nuts salad, baby spinach with beetroot and mustard vinaigrette, raw cauliflowers/cabbages to dip in sauces... Olives... Cucumber salad...

When my children complain they are hungry before dinner I just give them raw veg (mainly tomatoes, peppers, cucumber, carrots, spinach, endive...)

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 15:40:39

Tomatoes with vinaigrette, gratted carrots with vinaigrette, sweet corn with vinaigrette, cucumber with creme fraiche and chives saisonned with black peppers and salt, beetroot, melon,tuna with cold rice...

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 15:42:28

Mimosa eggs with Mayo and salad.

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 15:43:49

Before pudding, we always have green salad and vinaigrette and selection of cheese.

Rattitude Tue 11-Feb-14 15:54:25

Sliced tomatoes with sweetcorn (as you mentioned) with 'miettes de thon' and vinaigrette. The tuna can be replaced with anchovies and olives. It can also be served with quartered hard-boiled eggs.

Sliced tomatoes with sliced avocado, and mozarella.

Melon with parma ham.

Aubasaurus Tue 11-Feb-14 16:01:51

Not French but when we stay with French family in the summer salade de tomates is a favourite - just lots of chopped tomatoes with smaller amounts of green pepper and onion, with vinaigrette. We also often have green salad with vinaigrette. Anything is good as long as there's vinaigrette!

DuPainDuVinDuFromage Tue 11-Feb-14 16:03:21

Ooh you're making me hungry! I think this explains why french dh loves vegetables whereas I just tolerate them...I'm learning though!

TheOneWithTheNicestSmile Tue 11-Feb-14 16:12:30

I remember from my French exchange having a lovely tomatoey dish with eggs baked into it - anybody know what that would have been?

(I used to get a lot of lettuce - I didn't eat much of it & when my host's mother asked why I said it was nourriture pour les lapins. She thought that was very funny)(luckily. I blush now!)

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 16:15:38

The one - yes you pour a tomatoes tin in a pan, add eggs and cheese salt, pepper et voila !

TheOneWithTheNicestSmile Tue 11-Feb-14 16:27:08

Thanks, pockets smile

Does it have a name? Where does the cheese go?

TheOneWithTheNicestSmile Tue 11-Feb-14 16:28:42

(Or is it just oeufs aux tomates?)(or maybe tomates aux oeufs?) wink

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 16:33:37

I wonder if its the name is tomates aux et à la provencales , you can herbs on the top and yes lots of gruyère on the top or cheddar ! My mum used to do that meal when she was in a rush ! You can serve it with couscous or pasta

SaltyGoodness Tue 11-Feb-14 16:55:43

These are BRILLIANT thank you so much/merci a tous... keep them coming! Yes it was very much "n'importe quoi au vinaigrette" but I remember loving it so much, always super fresh and simple. You really got to appreciate the flavours of whatever vegetables you were eating... can't wait to feed my DD this way.

Was the oeufs aux tomates a first course or the main course at dinner? Sounds good. I often make that middle eastern eggs poached in tomatoes thingy that every middle eastern country claims to have invented, but it's always a brunchy thing.

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 17:27:26

The tomatoes thingy is a main ! Thank you for doing this thread, I remember when I was little eating carrottes rapées served in a little ramequin + a main meal (which could be spinash and egg boak) steack haché with haricots verts, a slice of cheese and a dessert...it was really balanced and I think its still is !

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 17:35:19

cantine menu

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 17:36:46

Look at the menu from a school canteen, maybe it could give you some ideas ?

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Tue 11-Feb-14 17:37:36

Lots of pulses salads with lashings of parsley too, and french beans with shallots... Chicoree with nuts and bleu cheese or beetroots

tomatoes thingy is a main it is the cheap version of ratatouille/eggs (basque)

MamaMary Tue 11-Feb-14 17:39:39

Is vinaigrette just olive oil and balsamic vinegar? Or another kind of vinegar?

These simple recipes sound lovely, but tomatoes are pretty tasteless in the winter, at least the ones I get.

In the summer I get loads of different lettuces and courgette from my mum's garden, so I tend to only have salady things in the summer.

SaltyGoodness Tue 11-Feb-14 17:45:48

my pockets j'ai tellement envie de manger a cette cantine.... thank you for posting the menu link!

French school food is just so much more varied than elsewhere. I love it! They still have treats like pizza and such, but the variety of vegetables they use is wonderful.

God I hope I can train DD to eat like a frenchwoman grin

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 17:49:10

I don't remember my parents having a particular vinegar in these days...now they use raspberries vinegar or else..

You are welcome Sally smile

SaltyGoodness Tue 11-Feb-14 18:02:17

I just read 'French Children Don't Throw Food' and while I understand some of the ideas are a little... shall we say... controversial to the Mumsnet audience (viz previous threads on that book), I did find myself in massive agreement with the chapters on food and educating children to eat widely and well. I lived with a french family many years ago and the differences were striking. It's so normal for children to sit at the table and eat pretty much everything!

mypocketsarevide Tue 11-Feb-14 18:07:50

My nephew (100 % French) eat everything, same as adults...to give you an example : moules marinières is one of their favourite meal !

RedLentil Tue 11-Feb-14 19:12:30

Children obsessed with mussels also to be found here on the shores of Bantry Bay. grin My children (7 & 5) pick them for their birthday dinners too.

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Tue 11-Feb-14 19:46:53

Vinaigrette is never balsamic! Red wine or white wine vinegar sometimes lemon juice or fancy vinegar (raspberry, blackcurrant, rosemary...).

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