Then I remembered that I had some interesting mustards in the cupboard that we got in Dijon last summer. When we were in Dijon, it was the thing to do to go into mustard shops and buy lots of mustard (even though, as I've mentioned, I HATE mustard). But somehow, all the pretty bottles were quite alluring. We ended up buying about 50 jars of mustard (no, I'm not kidding). The boys like mustard and I thought they'd make great gifts too. Plus, the flavors were just too interesting to pass up. I have actually been using a bleu cheese mustard in our salad dressing recently that is beyond amazing. So amazing, that I have ventured a taste of the mustard on its own. That's right, I've let straight mustard pass my lips. And, guess what? I didn't die. Unbelievable!
So, when faced with this week's FFwD recipe, I decided to go to the cupboard and see what types of flavored mustards we still had. I discovered this jewel of apricot and curry! Sounded interesting and enticing, so I decided to give it a try. I also decided to follow Dorie's bonne idee and make my own tapenade (something I'd never done before, given how easy store-bought is to buy)...just in case I couldn't stomach the mustard batons.
The tapenade took less than five minutes to whip up. It was very tasty...totally salty, a little lemony and I got to use some fresh, French thyme from my bathroom herb garden.
|Puff pastry spread with tapenade|
|Puff pastry spread with apricot & curry mustard|
|Mustard batons after being cut|
This is an incredibly easy recipe...especially if you use store bought puff pastry (which I did). Thaw the puff pastry, smear the goods on it, fold over, cut with a pizza cutter, wash with egg wash, sprinkle with poppy seeds, bake, eat! I only baked up 8 of these (4 of each flavor) to sample and froze the rest. I'll be taking these to my brother's for an appetizer at Easter dinner.
|Still Life on the Counter|
|Batons with egg wash and poppy seeds|
The verdict? Quite lovely. Great crunch and the tapenade was wonderful (although I used too much and the tapenade batons kind of exploded). The apricot and curry mustard was pretty good (a little too mustardy for me...but not so awful that I had to wash my mouth out) and these batons came out perfectly. I think my palate is expanding, since I even considered eating mustard and then actually did. I probably will never be able to ask for mustard on my sandwich or dip anything into a honey mustard sauce, but having mustard added in to things is becoming less of a traumatic experience for me! Unlike the experience below. Can you guess what these are?
|Oh so sad!|
Yep, I made a batch of Mocha Macarons with Chocolate Ganache filling. The macarons were a complete failure (sorry Mardi, I followed your tutorial to the nth degree) as they totally cracked, sank and had no feet. Of course, as we all know, ugly macarons still taste good. My ganache was a failure too. I was in a hurry, melted my chocolate in the microwave, then added the cold cream (without stirring the mixture over some boiling water). The cold cream hardened the melted chocolate into tiny pieces (of course it would, duh! What was I thinking?) So, while tasting great...it didn't firm up and was a runny mess. Nevertheless, I spooned the running filling onto the incredibly ugly macarons and got them all settled in our macaron container. I turned to go to the sink, hit the container and macarons flew across the kitchen. All of them except four! I started to pick them up (using the five second rule), but the first one had a piece of cat hair on it, so I decided the whole batch had to be tossed. Really, really sad. And, look how brave I am, sharing these photos which also show an incredibly dirty kitchen mat (another total mistake...I bought these cushion mats for the kitchen in a beige color and they show every drip and don't come clean...they are about to be replaced with black cushion mats...I really don't know what I was thinking!!!)