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What's Cooking: 5 Recipes for the Weekight Francophile

Elena North-Kelly

January 25, 2016

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Recipes

Think French cuisine is too daunting for a home cook? Not with these dishes. Indulge your inner Francophile with these five simple, weeknight-friendly recipes for each day of the week, ending with a creamy crowd-pleaser perfect for unwinding with friends on Friday night.

Monday: Stewed Big Bean Cassoulet
Chock full of beans and vegetables, this meatless version of the classic French cassoulet doesn’t disappoint. To make it truly vegetarian, just substitute vegetable broth for the lobster and chicken stock.

Tuesday: Grilled Loup de Mer with Braised Fennel
This simple but elegant grilled fish has lovely, crisped skin and is paired with a simple citrus sauce. Loup de mer is also known as branzino; have your fishmonger fillet it for you.

Wednesday: Beef Salad Parisienne
In Beard on Food, this hearty salad recipe was included in a section dedicated to vinaigrettes. Our namesake writes that vinaigrette is "as simple as one, two, three," that "the possibilities of a vinaigrette don't end with salad." Make extra and use it as a marinade for a weekend dish.

Thursday: Poached Salmon with Beurre Blanc
Beurre blanc, a rich, butter-based sauce from France's Loire Valley, pairs excellently with fish, especially salmon. As the legend goes, this sauce was stumbled upon by accident, when a chef, rushed for time while making a béarnaise sauce, forgot to add the tarragon and egg yolks and…Voilà beurre blanc!

Friday: Cheese Fondue
Originally a Swiss creation, cheese fondue is most often associated with Savoie (Savoy), the Alpine region of France that borders Switzerland. Fondue makes for a fun and easy party dish, with guests dipping their chunks of French bread into the pot of decadent, bubbling cheese. 

Hungry for more? View our entire recipe collection.

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Elena North-Kelly is senior editor at the James Beard Foundation. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.