A highlight of my stay at Chalet Savoie Faire was our afternoon spent in Nikki’s cookery school; the opportunity to allow somebody else to take charge, issue instructions and coordinate the production of a variety of dishes was a decadent treat but, the beauty of cooking is that there is always something new to see and learn. Armed with chilled kir, we made ourselves at home in Nikki’s vast, open-plan lounge, as she explained the long list of seasonal dishes that we were going to prepare; from my own experience, I knew that this could only be successful if organized with military precision which Nikki subtly achieved alongside our chatter and laughter.



Cocktail nibbles, soup, salads and supper dishes and dessert, our afternoon included shortcrust and choux though the coveted souvenir is a copy of the many recipes to prepare for family at home.



I am not normally a huge fan of lasagna but this version has certainly won my vote. Light, fresh flavours combine to produce a substantial supper dish that will please vegetarians and meat lovers alike. These quantities provide 4 generous servings but with accompaniments, will easily serve 6.


Carrot, Feta and Dill Lasagne
Serves 4


Ingredients

  • 4 Carrots peeled & grated
  • 2 Onion finely sliced
  • ½ Leek finely sliced
  • 2 Clove of Garlic crushed
  • 1 Vegetable Stock Cube mixed with ½ cup water
  • 250ml Milk
  • 1 Packet Feta Cheese (400 g) crumbled
  • ½ Handful Grated Cheese
  • ½ Handful Breadcrumbs
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • ½ Box of lasagne Sheets
  • Salt & Pepper, Paprika

Preheat oven to 180 °C

Method

Sauté the onions, garlic and leeks in a little oil for 5 minutes until soft.

Add to the pan the grated carrots the milk, water, vegetable stock, crumbled feta and salt & pepper.

Cook for a further 10 minutes on a medium heat.

Layer in a lasagne dish as follows; layer of vegetable mix, sprinkle of cheese, sheet of lasagne. Repeat several times finishing with a layer of vegetable mix on top.

Finish with a reduced mix of canned tomatoes, ½ cup wine, salt & pepper, chopped chives and reduce until thick, pour over the top, sprinkle breadcrumbs, paprika and grated cheese. Place in the oven for 3o minutes. Serve with salad and garlic bread.

Cauliflower is an underrated vegetable that comes into its own when roast; gone is any hint of a soggy, waterlogged vegetable and instead enjoy a smoky ‘bite’. To contrast with this, sweetness is added in the form of roast red onion and currants whilst the toasted almonds add crunch though hazelnuts work equally as well.


Cauliflower and Saffron Salad
Serves 6


Ingredients

  • 700g Cauliflower, chopped into small florets
  • Salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1 red onion, chopped finely
  • ½ cup flat parsley, chopped roughly
  • ½ cup unsalted almonds

Dressing

  • ½ tsp. saffron
  • 1 tbsp. boiling water
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. currants
  • Salt & black cracked pepper

Method

Preheat oven to 180C/ fan forced 160C.

On a baking tray spread out the florets of cauliflower, sprinkle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper; bake until cooked through and golden in colour and allow to cool.

Spread the almonds over a tray and roast for 5 minutes or until golden in colour; chop coarsely and set aside.

Chop the red onion finely and set aside.

Dressing- place the saffron and boiling water in a small bowl and let stand for 5 minutes. Whisk in the vinegar, oil, salt and pepper, then currants.

Place the cauliflower into a large bowl, sprinkle with dressing, add parsley, onion and mix through. Pour on a large serving plate and sprinkle with the almonds and serve.

Chalet Savoie Faire
Fontaines-Naves
73260 La Lechere
France

Tel: 0033 (0)479 24 54 28
www.chaletsavoiefaire.com