mulled wine

Crisp mascarpone custard with candied oranges and dark chocolate

Maybe you don't want as rich a dessert as you would literally pamper in these upcoming festivities. Nevertheless, it is nice, in light of this brrrr...freezing winter, to come back home to something exquisite to enjoy at the end of an otherwise dull midweek supper before the real Christmas food festival kicks in and your jaw keeps dropping. I must have been about 12 of age when, finally allowed to enter the kitchen (as I explained thoroughly here), I was taught by my grandma how to make the real, authentic, unfussy and let me add, majestic Tiramisù. The major ingredient is the fluffy, richly flavoured mascarpone cheese. Regardless of the season, I love to be inventive using this ingredient with my own recipes. Last week I sipped a good cup of mulled wine (which recipe you can find here), and I told myself, why not enjoying it with a pairing dessert? So here it is, wrapped up in a video recipe. This is a collaboration I conducted with a French video production (you can watch the first episode here), but even if the wording is French, believe me, this cooking video speaks for itself. In case you were wondering about the exact ingredients and execution, you can find them right below.

Crisp mascarpone custard with candied oranges and dark chocolate (serves 2 persons)

  • 250 gr. mascarpone cheese
  • 125 gr. of room temperature tap water
  • 175 gr. caster sugar
  • 40 gr. dark chocolate
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 4 savoiardi biscuits (or ladyfingers)
  • 100 ml. whole milk
  • 1 unwaxed organic orange
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Cut the orange in four pieces. Remove its pulp, then cut the skin into fine stripes and whitewashthem: immerse them in water, remove them after 2 minutes boiling. Repeat the method for 4 times in a row (this will take out the acidity from the orange's skin). Then, let the orange strips dry on a clean cloth.

In a bowl, mix the egg yolks with 50 gr. of sugar until creamy. Then add the mascarpone cheese and mix gently. Chop the chocolate roughly with a knife, and add it to the mixture.

In a pot, pour the water with the remaining sugar. Incorporate the orange strips and the cinnamon stick. Let cook for 25 minutes at low fire.

Pour the milk in a tiny bowl, then break each biscuits in two and lightly soak them in the milk. Place them at the bottom of a mug, then let half of the mascarpone cheese mixture fall on top of them. Finally, add a few orange slices per serving and sprinkle with some chocolate chips.

With love and candied fruits,


Goûters du cœur @ Cafè de la Paix

I tweeted about going there, and Ines de la Fressange, arguably the most elegant woman in town (her Style Guide is a bible for most Parisian girls and beyond) and the ambassador for this charitable event, retweeted me. For the 4th consecutive year, the Café de la Paix shines more than ever the Parisian Place de l'Opera by continuing to actively support the association Mécénat Chirurgie Cardiaque with the "goûters du cœur" (snack of the heart).Every afternoon for two weeks from Tuesday 2 to Friday, December 12, 2014, from 16:00 to 18:00, the mythical restaurant of the Hotel InterContinental Paris Le Grand will offer a special taste (mulled wine or hot chocolate, gingerbread and cakes) at a price of 5 euros to eat in or take away and which all proceeds will be donated to give a child in need a new heart.

The mulled wine I tasted the other day was so delicious that I couldn't help but asking for its recipe, that I'm sharing with you today!


Christmas mulled wine from Alsace

Ingredients for 12 people:

  • 1.5 liters of red wine (Bordeaux, Burgundy or Pinot Noir)
  • 250 g brown sugar
  • 1 untreated lemon zest
  • 1 untreated orange zest
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 piece of fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 pinch of grated nutmeg

Mix all ingredients and bring to a boil, very gently. Simmer for 5 minutes. Serve hot in glasses by filtering with a colander. Place a slice of orange in each glass.

With love and warm wine,