Thursday, May 28, 2015

Kitchen Culinaire

Julie Marr's blog, Kitchen Culinaire, is a gastronomic tour de force when it comes to sharing, styling, and photographing the season's best.  I first came across her beautiful photography through instagram, and quickly became a follower and fan of her work.  For me, good food blogging has always been about style, context and composition.  Kitchen Culinaire exhibits these so effortlessly, and what's more, Julie's website is organized with a good layout. A well-organized blog is something I truly appreciate, because it's what compels me to come back time and time again for inspiration.

When you go through the singular, inimitable style that is Julie's, you too will connect with what she is teaching us at any given moment and be inspired to create your own plat du jour in the kitchen.  Whether she is throwing a dinner party or is teaching a cooking class at home in Vancouver, Canada, for chef Julie, it's all about making the connection between what is on the plate, how it got there, and her guests.

Isn't this why so many of us who are passionate about cooking and baking, as well as entertaining write a blog?  That we want to share the best of the very best with those that mean the most to us is one of the main reasons why we blog and it is no different for chef Julie.

Julie mentioned to me that she was currently in the process of taking her yearly tour of Italy and France (she's already arrived), where she visits, learns, and in turn, shares her gustatory delights with readers.  

While visiting Messors in Puglia, Italy, she will volunteer for their Masseria La Selva culinary tour.  Messors hosts a variety of workshops for art restoration and preservation, as well as culinary, shepherding and writing.  It isn't too difficult to wonder why this area is special and why those who are lucky enough to experience a Messors workshop come back.  I can't wait to see what Julie will be sharing with us in the coming weeks and months.  The photos above, were taken last year during her stay there.

France is also on the agenda for Julie, and I, for one, am eagerly anticipating what she has to share during that particular visit.  For the seared duck breast main course and apricot tart dessert recipes, visit her website.

This is the index that awaits you when you click on the recipes tab.  I love the visual contrasts in color, the long list of recipes divided by seasons and courses.  It's simply beautiful!  The list of recipes I want to try is rather long and when I do find some time or when the mood strikes me, I will simply don an apron and get to work.

In the meantime, I thought I would devise a menu of my choice from what Julie has already shown on her website.  This small list of courses reflects what I like to eat and why.  Bookmark them or come up with your own menu and throw a dinner party or an impromptu get together with friends and family!

My Menu a la Kitchen Culinaire

I love crab cakes when I can get them ultra fresh and properly done.  I don't like my cakes to have too many ingredients, because I crave the sweet, tender flavor of jumbo lump crabmeat.  Serve them with a dollop of remoulade, and I guarantee that these will disappear the moment they hit the platter.  


This corn chowder sounds utterly mouthwatering, with bits of bacon, fresh thyme, potatoes and some heavy cream to thicken.  Corn in any form is welcomed on my dining table when I can get it straight from the farmers market.  If it comes from the nearby Lancaster County Amish farms here in Pennsylvania, then it's on the menu at chez moi.


Scallops may be my favorite type of seafood for a main course.  Diver scallops from New England seared to caramelize the surface, served atop a flavorful lemon risotto cooked to perfection is a delicious main course.  Serve a rosé with it this summer.


You'll think it odd of me, but we prefer to eat our salads after we've had the main course.  It's something I've been doing since I lived in New York back in the '90s.  I find it a nice way to end a meal, but of course, feel free to serve this zucchini ribbon salad before the main course.  The ricotta salata and the nicoise olives are perfect salty accents to the sweetness of the zucchini.  Tasty!


Pavlovas served with juicy summer berries are exquisite and not difficult to make.  There is no guilt here when eating one or two of them.


Although this sorbet is made with blood oranges which are not in season during summer, Julie says we can substitute other citrus fruits in their place.  If you give the option of two desserts at your dinner party, your guests will feel ultra special.  Making pavlovas and sorbets don't take up too much time in the kitchen and any leftovers can be enjoyed the following day.


Seeing this stack of chocolate chip cookies put a smile on my face because they are my favorite cookie.  Good enough for the cookie jar, these tasty treats make excellent favors to give to your guests at the end of the meal to take home. The nice thing about these cookies is that they don't take up too much time preparing and baking.  In fact, you can prepare them a day or two ahead of your dinner party.  Follow Julie's easy step-by-step instructions.  


I hope this small introduction to Kitchen Culinaire prompts you to visit the website soon.  There is so much to discover and learn from Julie Marr, whether it be a recipe, a wonderfully styled photograph or from taking one of her classes.  If you're fortunate enough to take a Messors culinary tour in Italy and/or France, then so much the better!

Thank you, Julie, for your inspiration, your vision and for giving us a small glimpse into your culinary world.  

2 comments:

  1. Oh my goodness. What an enchanting blog and life that blogger lives. The link to that chateau, Lord have Mercy the images are amazing. That info on the art restoration workshops. It ain't as easy as it looks folks. Remember that story of the little ld lady that tried to repaint the face of Jesus. It made the news as it was shocking as to her lack of knowing when to stop.

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  2. Yes, anonymous, it is! I think I'm putting Messors on my bucket list of things to do!

    Well, art restoration isn't something I want to tackle, but the food and wine I can definitely attempt without any worries. :)

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