Daily Archives: 5 November 2010

French Fridays with Dorie: Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans

It’s Friday again, so here’s another post for French Fridays with Dorie (FFwD). Since the beginning of October, I’ve been part of an on-line group that’s cooking its way through Dorie Greenspan’s new cookbook called Around My French Table. Every week, people cook the same recipe and write a blog post about it.

One “assigned” recipe a week cuts down the number of other recipes I can cook each week, but it cuts out at least one decision I have to make. Plus, I’m requested not to share the recipes from this cookbook in my post, so it reduces the number of recipes I can share through my blog. However, I’m having fun and making and eating some delicious recipes that would have eventually tried anyway. I bought the book when it first came out, further increasing the size of my cookbook collection, which includes well over 400 volumes, evidence of many years of collecting. (See two shelves pictured above in the header on my blog.)

So far, I’ve been keeping up; I haven’t missed a week yet. I especially enjoy reading about others’ shared experiences with the same recipe. There are a lot of creative cooks in the world! It’s inspiring!

Aren't They Cute?

This week I made the Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans. The flans were cooked in their own individual dishes and were really cute. The flavors were sophisticated, pumpkin, gorgonzola, and walnuts, but it was easy enough to make on a weeknight, for an elegant flair. No chopping was required (the recipe calls for canned pumpkin); you just give the ingredients a whirl in the blender before baking in individual ramekins.

I was a bit unsure whether I would like these, so I took a cue from what some of my fellow FFwD bloggers have done with other recipes and adjusted the quantity. I halved the recipe, making only three, especially because the recipe said the flans were best served the day they were cooked. It’s funny, but I thought they improved with age. I was home alone the night I made them, so I had one as my dinner. Then, I ate the others for lunch on the subsequent days. I thought they kept fine for a few days, and they rewarmed nicely in the microwave.

I have to admit that on the first night, I found the flan a bit bland and was disappointed. Happily, the last one had the right blend of flavors. I’m thinking that I didn’t add enough salt and after sitting a couple days, some of the salt from the cheese made its way into the pumpkin mixture. In the end, I decided that I liked these flans, and I’ll definitely make them again (with more salt). They’d make a nice starter or side for Thanksgiving, if you’re feeding a smaller crowd.

On a related note, Dorie Greenspan did an interview with Michele Norris on NPR’s All Things Considered this week. I missed the original broadcast, but it was included on the NPR Food Podcast subscribe to, so I listed on my way to work this morning. She talked about the Hachis Parmentier, which I made and wrote about a few weeks ago. She is so delightful. Check out the interview if you have a chance. Dorie also shares the recipe on the NPR site.