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Traditional Apple Frangipane Flan

Featured Recipes

Travel

Hôtel Splendido, Portofino, Italy

The picturesque Italian fishing village famous for its luxury resorts, upscale clientele, and beautiful harbour, Portofino is one of the premiere destinations in the world close to stunning beaches such as Paraggi Beach, Chiavari, Camogli, Lavagna, and Sestri Levante. The half-moon shaped seaside village is where the rich and famous, including celebrities love to take vacations and thus the town is bustling with restaurants, shops, cafes, and luxury hotels. One of the most renowned places to dine and stay in Portofino is at the Hotel Splendido.   
Hotel Splendido is an essential stop when it comes to the world luxury circuit. Featured in the Gold List 2011, Splendido consists of two separate hotels connected by a shuttle bus, the other one is the newer Splendido Mare. The original hotel is a peaches-and-cream villa that sits on a hillside above the port and features extensive gardens, a swimming pool, gym, sauna, tennis courts, and elegantly decorated rooms with interiors of pretty pastels.       
In the Ava Gardner suite, make the experience of a dazzling morning, the sea breeze gently stroking you then take a tranquil walk along the small Portofino harbour. When it comes to fine food, the chef Corti and his team lovingly cooks with maestria, for his international customers, the most popular recipes of the great Italian Cuisine, Ligurian-style seafood salads, pesto gnocchis, fish soups or goat cheese tartlets, with lemon cream and pine-seeds, all to relish while sipping a small glass of Limoncello.
Long been one of the most glamorous places to stay in all of Italy, Hotel Splendido offer serenity and peace as well as some of the finest foods in the country.  La Terrazze restaurant offers either indoor of outdoor dining on the terrace where once can enjoy breathtaking views of Portofino. The premises also include a pool bar, piano bar, and buffet-style pool restaurant.
Hôtel Splendido, Portofino, Italy
Le Schosteshof, Roger Souverenys

An elegant country retreat in the heart of Limburg, a province in Belgium, Le Scholteshof is also one of the finest places to dine in the country and is only an hour away eastwards from Brussels. Chef and hotelier Roger Souvereyns, owner of Scholteshof is an avid collector of paintings, antiques and spoons and used to be a dealer of antiques until he opened his own hotel and restaurant in 1983 to fulfill his passion for good food and wine. Chef Souvereyns is no amateur in fine cuisine, even earning two Michelin stars for his unique dishes and superb restaurant. 
The beauty of the property is undeniably breathtaking spanning more than 25 acres of cultivated gardens where vegetables, herbs, and fruits are grown and are used in his kitchen. In the estate are a vineyard, statuary, gazebos, ponds, fountains, pergolas, orchards, and yew maze. Ducks and chickens are also raised in the property so guests can be assured of super fresh and top quality ingredients. 
The restaurant exudes a relaxing country vibe with luxurious items and objects that liven up the place and make it feel sophisticated. The award-winning restaurant offers two kinds of fixed menus for six courses, another prix fixe menu for a three-course dinner, as well as an a la carte menu for ordering appetizers, main dishes, and desserts. Some of the signature dishes served in the restaurant include Truffles with endives topped with foie gras carpaccio, Langoustines with chard stems in a light and delicate broth of lemon balm and vanilla, Pureed pumpkin with orange-anise reduction, and Corquant de legumesâa medley of eggplant, onions, beans, and celeriac.  
The 18 rooms in the hotel are each uniquely decorated with contemporary furniture combined with antiques as well as paintings and art objects. Arrangement of fresh flowers from the garden livens up the space and gives it a fresh and wonderful scent. The suites include a living room and lift bedroom with a spiral staircase.
Le Schosteshof, Roger Souverenys
Les Trois Forts, Dominique Frérard

A gourmet restaurant on the top floor of the plush Sofitel Marseille Vieux Port Hotel, Les Trois Forts is the finest dining spot in the area where guests can enjoy Mediterranean haute cuisine while admiring a stunning panoramic view of the old port where a line of boats are docked. The restaurant is decorated like a fancy boat with shades of navy blue and pearl, blended with contemporary aesthetics and Art Deco tableware. Inspired by the underwater world, the restaurants ambiance is calmingly elegant. 
French Master Chef Dominique Frérard prepares the exquisite cuisine that travelers and food connoisseurs from all over the world come to experience. The award-winning breakfast at Les Trois Forts features fresh local produce and hot food stations. A wide range of dishes is available for lunch and dinner made with seasonal produce and only the freshest, highest quality produces. Star Chef Frérard combines traditional regional culture and refined and delicate flavors with modern haute cuisine creating the best dishes in Marseilles. Signature dishes include Stuffed vegetables with prawns and coriander vinaigrette, Blue lobster with Swiss chard, mushrooms and creamy ravioli, and Marzipan with almond and orange emulsion. 
Bar Le Carré serves tapas, delicate cuisine, appetizers, pastries, and signature cocktails as well as a wide selection of teas. The refined and relaxing atmosphere dedicated to the marine and yachting world creates a special place for guests to hold important meetings or celebrate intimate occasions.      
A native of the Ardeneâs region in France, Dominique Frérard lived in Marseilles for 15 years and has spent 11 years in the kitchen of the Les Trois Forts. His love and passion for the city of Marseilles is quite evident in his cooking, which is influenced by the local terroir as well as spices from North Africa, creating a unique and creative cuisine rich in flavors.
Les Trois Forts, Dominique Frérard
Le Château de Mazan, Carpentras, France

Le Chateau de Mazan is a place full of history and intrigue. Built in 1720 during the early Regency Period of France, the Mazan was the former residence of the legendary and notorious Marquis de Sade. It was within the walls of the chateau that he held his first Theatre festival in France some time in 1772. These plays, which the Marquis directed and performed in, were shown in the Mazan and Lacoste Castles. At the time of the revolution, the Marquis de Sade was declared a persona non grata in the commune of Mazan in the Vaucluse department in the Provence-Alpes-Cote dâAzur region in southeastern France. The chateau was damaged and all the family archives were destroyed. After the revolution, the chateau remained the property of the Marquisâ family until 1850.
Since then the use of Chateau de Mazan has changed various times throughout the decades. From a private residence, it became a religious school and then in 1923, it was converted into a home for the aged, which closed in 1999. In 2001, Madame Lhermie bought the chateau and renovated the property for more than a year, turning it into a luxury hotel with a gourmet restaurant. Today, it is tastefully decorated with soft colors and chandeliers in pampilles. The restaurant is under the wing of young talented chef, Iris Enrich, who serves some of the finest foods in the region like terrine of foie gras in crystallized tomatoes.
The art of living Provençal style is epitomized in the blessed ground of Carpentras where vineyards, fruits, vegetables and truffles are abundant. Make sure to visit the famous market of Carpentras for the famous black truffles, the capital of the comtat Vénaissin, a papal property with a beautiful and historic architecture that goes back to the Roman empire, and donât forget to try one of the specialties of the region invented by the cook of the pope: the berlingot.
Le Château de Mazan, Carpentras, France

Cooking Recipe Videos

There are many ways to improve your cooking skills: reading great cookbooks, taking cooking classes, and good old fashioned practice in the kitchen are traditional methods. But these days, online cooking recipe videos are another excellent resource for aspiring chefs. Here's how to get the most from the cooking videos you encounter.

Find Them

There are lots of cooking recipe videos out there, but not all are created equal. Before you spend time watching any, consider the source. If you want to widen your cooking horizons, videos featuring famous chefs are a must. Such chefs might include television personalities (who may or may not have formal cooking backgrounds), cooking legends (like Julia Child, Graham Kerr, and Wolfgang Puck), or Michelin star-awarded chefs who've impressed the cooking world with their expertise and talent.

Live Demos

Once you find cooking recipe videos by esteemed chefs, you will probably discover you learn the most if you watch the videos more than once. In the first viewing, you'll likely only get the overall picture of what the chef is doing. If you watch the video once or twice more, you may notice and remember details you didn't before.

Bear in mind that you're not just learning how to make a particular recipe. You're also hoping to learn cooking techniques you can rely upon for other dishes. For example, you might see a Michelin chef chop up food in a faster, simpler way than you've ever seen before. Or you might see how a meal is flambéed. Or you might learn a new way to cook meat so it's crisp on the outside and tender and juice on the inside. There is nothing quite like a live demo, to make those techniques stick in your brain and come to life next time you are in the kitchen.

Share it

Although cooking recipe videos are helpful and educational, they're also fun. You can make them even more entertaining by sharing them with friends. What does your best friend think about trying to make a flambéed meal with you? Does she have a funny story to tell about attempting this on her own? Does your work mate drool over gourmet desserts as much as you do? Are you and your friends inspired by a certain video to try a pot luck gourmet party? Let cooking videos be part of you and your friends online entertainment, and you'll have fun while you improve your cooking skills.

Try it Out

After watching cooking recipe videos, it's a great idea to make the recipes in your own kitchen. The best cooking video websites also have printed recipes to go along with their videos. Print one out and give the recipe your best go.

Or, you could just try out one or two techniques you learned by watching a great chef. For example, maybe you've never tried blanching vegetables before. After watching a chef demonstrate this on a video, you can try the technique almost any time you're preparing veggies.

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