Tune into FOX Tomorrow for Valentine Date Night

Lorie Fangio with the KDFW Fox crew

Tune into Fox 4 KDFW, tomorrow, Wednesday, February 13th about 9:40 to see ME cooking LIVE with the morning crew!

I’ll show you how to host a Romantic Date Night, just in time for Valentine’s Day!

Instead of fighting crowds this year, opt to stay in with this mouthwatering menu.  Pan seared Pork Chops with Apple Cranberry Pan Sauce served over Creamy Mashed Potatoes is decadent and satisfying and the best part, it won’t take you all day to prepare!

For a sweet ending try one of my favorite go-to recipes French Chocolate Bark.

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Pork Chops with Apple Cranberry Pan Sauce

2 boneless pork chops, 6 ounces each

1-2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons butter

½ large Granny Smith apple, peeled and chopped

¼ cup dried cranberries

1 tablespoon onion, grated

1 small garlic clove, pressed

1 teaspoon brown sugar

2 tablespoons dry white wine

¼ cup chicken stock

pinch cinnamon

¼ teaspoon sage

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Melt butter in a chef’s pan set over medium/low heat.  Salt and pepper pork chops liberally.  Dredge chops in flour and place into the hot pan.  Sear for 3-4 minutes until pork is getting brown.  Flip and sear the second side. Remove the chops from the pan and place them in a glass baking dish and into the oven to finish cooking, about 18 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 155 degrees.   To prepare the sauce deglaze the pan with the white wine.  Add remaining ingredients and cook until mixture is thick and apples are breaking down a bit.  Remove from heat and serve over the pork shops.

Creamy Mashed Potatoes

3 pounds potatoes, preferably Yukon Gold’s, peeled and diced

½ cup heavy cream

¼ cup butter

Salt and Pepper to taste

Boil potatoes in salted water until tender.  Drain water, reserving 1 cup of cooking water.  Place potatoes in a bowl an electric mixer and mix with cream and butter until perfectly smooth.  If potatoes are still too stiff, add a bit of the cooking water until desired consistency is reached.  Salt and pepper to taste. 

Silver dish of French Chocolate Bark topped with dried apricots, pistachios and dried cherries.
This version of French Chocolate Bark is topped with dried apricots, pistachios and dried cherries.

French Chocolate Bark

1 12-ounce package of 60% cocoa chocolate chips, I use Ghirardelli’s

½ cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped

½ cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped

½ cup coconut

Line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper.  Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl in 30 second intervals stirring well in between each time.  Spread melted chocolate on parchment paper creating a thin sheet of chocolate. Sprinkle with fruit and nuts and slightly press into chocolate.  Chill the candy in the refrigerator until set and break into pieces. Keep bark refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

TASTE THE FOOD. TASTE THE WINE.

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A Taste of Paris 2020

Culinary adventure of a lifetime!

More Details…CLICK HERE

au revoir for now lorie (002)

 

 

A River Runs Through It

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The River Seine, (pronounced like sin) gets its name from the Latin word Sequana; the Gallo-Roman goddess of the river. The Seine runs through Paris splitting in in half, on one side, the right bank and on the other the left.

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  The river snakes through the city making it hard to determine which side you’re on unless you are a seasoned Paris traveler.

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Taking a cruise on the Seine is always an activity planned for A Taste of Paris groups on our first evening. Seeing Paris from a river view helps people understand how the city is laid out.

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Not to mention the very best view of the Eiffel Tower is from a boat on the Seine!

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The Seine is closely associated with Paris and is featured in many poems and songs; however, it covers much more of France than just Paris.  The Seine is 482 miles long running from Dijon France through Paris and Rouen and finally to the English Channel at Le Havre and Honfleur.

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The city of Paris boasts 37 bridges that span the Seine and there are no two alike!

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The Seine happened to be a favorite of Sue Nagy, the ATOP guest that is being featured in today’s post answering the question “Why France?”

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Sue traveled to Paris with me in 2017 and will be with me again for A Taste of Paris Goes PINK in 2019!  I adore Sue’s fun nature. Here she is with friend and fellow traveler Kerry Harrison in front of Notre Dame.

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This is the best picture of Sue, writing her name in her croissant dough, I am certain that was not part of the chef’s instructions!

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Here is what Sue had to say about our travel. “My ATOP trip to Paris with Lorie was over the top wonderful!  I loved every single moment!!”  

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“Lorie’s knowledge on the food, culture and neighborhoods was exceptional! 

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The agenda is well planned, professionally organized and a must-do for anyone that loves an adventure!”

If you travel with me to Paris, our first adventure will be a cruise on the Seine!

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This is the final photo I will leave you with today.  It is a blurred view but reminds me of the French impressionist paintings hanging of the Musee d’Orsay!

For more information on Travel in 2019, CLICK HERE

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Did Someone Say Food?

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When traveling with A Taste of Paris, food is pretty much always on our minds.  You know what they say…”When in France, do as the French do” and food is always on the minds of the French!

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When asked, Why France?  Jacqui Cooper, a former ATOP traveler, said it best…”To me, the mere mention of Paris evokes thoughts of exquisite food, wine, and pastries;” 

See the recipe below for Sweet Red Chili Basil Tomatoes from our Parisian chef; you may be surprised by one of the ingredients that make this stunning morsel an explosion in your mouth.

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“the first hint of trendsetter fashions; beautiful countryside and gardens; and a city of lights illuminating some of the world’s magnificent historical architectures.” 

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“Paris also brings to mind the flea and food markets where ordinary folks shop for the necessities of the day.” 

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“I chose the ATOP trips because it enabled me to revisit some of Paris’ breathtaking historical sites,”

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“such as Notre Dame, Arc de Triomphe, and the Pantheon;”

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“and to enjoy again, the French countryside and wonderful champagne.” 

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“The tour also gave me the unique opportunity to delve into the food side of Paris.”

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  “Of course, we went to lovely restaurants and bistros to partake of the Parisian cuisine,”

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“but the motivating reason for choosing ATOP was the “hands on” activities.  For example, we had an afternoon at the world famous Le Cordon Bleu School, where we actually, under the watchful eye of a French pastry chef, participated in the painstaking detailed process of making macrons.” 

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“Another day found us meeting the Chef for our market class at the food market in mid-morning to shop for ingredients for the day’s luncheon.” 

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“We purchased what was needed and returned to the Chef’s school to cook.  We again participated in every step of preparing a meal and how to beautifully present it on the plate.”

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“These kinds of “hands on” experiences made the ATOP tour truly an unforgettable trip.”

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“An ever present reminder of the trip is the personalized chef’s jacket that Lorie gave each of us while in Paris.  Thanks Lorie.”

So Thank you Jacqui for summing up the A Taste of Paris experience so articulately!

You can still travel with ATOP in 2019 CLICK HERE for all the details!

And try Sweet Red Chili Basil Tomatoes with produce ripe from the field today!

Sweet Red Chili Basil Tomatoes

1-2 cups cherry tomatoes

Basil leaves, one for each tomato

1 teaspoon brown sugar

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon Piment d’espelette (or substitute, 11/2 teaspoon paprika and a healthy dash of cayenne pepper)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Make a slit in each tomato about ¼ inch deep.  In a bowl, mix sugar and seasonings very well.  Add tomatoes and coat well with the sugar mixture.  Place tomatoes on a baking sheet lined with parchment and using the back of a knife; slide a basil leaf into the slit of each tomato.  Place baking sheet into the oven to warm through for 4 minutes.

See you soon!

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Bucket List

 

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We all have a Bucket List, things we are dreaming of doing…

While registration for A Taste of Paris 2019 travel is open, I am exploring a simple question with past ATOP travelers; “Why France?”

It has been really fun to read the responses from so many wonderful people that have trusted me with their France vacations and to revisit so many memories as I sift through thousands of photos.

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I want you to meet Debbie Finley; here she is receiving her culinary certificate at Le Cordon Bleu.

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She is one of the awesome 9 that trusted me on my very first trip! These ladies will always have a special place in my heart!

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I asked Debbie “Why France?”

She Said “I had always wanted to go to Paris, but my husband was not interested.  When a friend and neighbor told me about the ATOP trips, I realized this was the opportunity of a lifetime.”

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“The food, the friends the experiences were amazing”

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“My favorite moment was the Michelin meal at Jules Verne at the Eiffel Tower, Cheers Jill”

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In our rush to get through our daily activities, take some time to consider your bucket list as a reminder of what is important to you.  When you are doing something you have only dreamed of, time seems to stand still.

It was truly a pleasure to help Debbie put a check by Paris on her list!

Thank you Debbie, for sharing your travel and your thoughts with me!

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Register for 2019 travel TODAY!  Just click for more details or email me at lorie@atasteofparis.net

A Taste of Paris- March 31st-April 7th 2019

A Taste of Provence- September 7th-14th, 2019 OR

A Taste of Provence- September 14th-21st, 2019 hurry only 1 seat left!

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Debbie is a well-known resident of our town.  She is the mother of twin boys and the grandmother to 4 precious children who she adores.  She is an avid golfer and gardener and she is also very active in her work with the International Student Foundation.

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Pink Grapefruit Martini

It’s Friday!

And I’m keeping the pink theme going through the end of March to celebrate the launch of A Taste of Paris Goes PINK, an all-female culinary trip to Paris in April 2019. Grab your daughter, mother, and friends to join me for this boutique culinary excursion of a lifetime. Seats are going FAST!

Since it’s the weekend, how about an aperitif, as the French would say!

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Sometimes after a long week, I just need to chill with a cocktail and some girlfriends.

My no -fuss Grapefruit Martini – a juicy balance of sweet and tart – is the ideal cocktail to serve friends or just bring the week to a close.

It’s not too sweet so if one drink won’t flip your mood, no worries, you can have a few.

You know they say, we taste with our eyes first, and this pretty pink martini would look fetching served in Luigi Bormioli retro chic glasses.

Are you planning a party for lots of BFF’s? The more the merrier, I always say!

Be sure you are stocked up on wine charms to help everyone keep their drinks straight. Below are a few of my on-trend favs. The jeweled bees by Joanna Buchanan have been buzzing around in my head since I first laid eyes on them.  I am not sure how long I can resist temptation!

Tassel Wine Charms 

Tassel Wine Charms March 9
Fred Wine Lines

Wine Charms March 9

Bug Wine Charms

Bug Wine Charms March 9
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Grapefruit Martini

2 parts grapefruit vodka

2 parts Ruby Red Grapefruit juice

½ part triple sec

Grapefruit twist for garnish

Shake all ingredients with ice and serve in a chilled glass with a grapefruit twist.

 

As always; drink responsibly and do not drive!

Enjoy and

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