June 17, 2011


When I was browsing in the public library for cookbooks I came across this book.

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It is such a nice book that I bought a copy from Amazon.  Then I decided I couldn’t live without the book in France so I got a second copy.

In it there is a lovely recipe for Provençal Garlic Chicken – otherwise known as Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic.

There is also one for these:  Cranberry Blondies.

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They are basically chocolate brownies but made with white chocolate instead of ordinary chocolate, and with cranberries added.  I made them at home and they were very indulgent and scrumptious.  

When we were there last month I made a batch of blondies in my French kitchen.

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The recipe states two tablespoons of grated orange rind.  The first time I made them I had grated the rind of two large oranges and stopped there.  There was less than two tablespoons but the blondies still had a strong orange flavour.  So this time I just used the rind of one large orange and it was about right.

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When baked, I cut them into quite small pieces as they are very rich and make nice sweet little “bites”.  Then I sprinkled them with icing sugar using a marvellous item found in a French supermarket.  It’s a tube of icing sugar with a rotating sieve at the top.  You tip it upside down over your cake, twist the disc at the top and have a beautifully controlled dusting of icing sugar.  Much easier than the icing sugar fog I usually end up with using a normal sieve and a spoon.  I haven’t seen anything like it in the UK so I brought it home with me.

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They turned out looking exactly like the picture in the book, always very satisfying.

Here’s the recipe for CRANBERRY BLONDIES

This is what you need

200g butter

300g white chocolate, in two 150g halves

3 eggs

150g caster sugar

½tsp vanilla extract

200g plain flour

pinch of salt

grated zest of one orange

100g dried cranberries, in 75g and 25g portions

icing sugar to dust

This is what you do

Melt the butter and half of the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Mix together until smooth.  Put on one side to cool a little.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.  Grease and line the base of a 18x28cm baking tin.

Beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla together until pale using an electric mixer or whisk.  Beat in the melted chocolate.

Sift together the flour and salt.  Chop the remaining 150g chocolate.  Fold the flour and salt into the mixture then mix in the chopped chocolate, orange zest and 75g of the cranberries.

Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared tin and level the top.  Sprinkle the remaining 25g of cranberries over the top.

Bake for 20 minutes until the top is firm but the inside is still soft.  Leave to cool in the tin.

When cool, cut into 24 small or 12 large squares and dust with icing sugar.


  1. Jean this recipe looks delicious, on my to-do list. I will try it when Nigel is here in July, time is not on my side at the moment!!! Diane

  2. Am always up for good cookery books, especially if they have yummy chocolate recipes in them. These blondies look amazing. I expect you're able to get hold of better quality chocolate in France too - sigh!