Jessie Kanelos Weiner_design sponge_thefrancoflyI just shared one of my favorite family recipes on Design*Sponge!

Read more here.

Jessie Kanelos Weiner_design sponge_thefrancofly 2

Braised meatballs aux petits pois

For 6 servings

Meatballs

– 1 slice white bread, crust removed
– 1 lb (450 g) ground beef
– 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater
– 1 egg, beaten
– 1 tablespoon flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
– ½ teaspoon sea salt
– ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (or 1 pinch of each: cinnamon, ginger, ground cloves and nutmeg)
– ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
– Olive oil

Petits pois

– 1 tablespoon olive oil
– 1 medium yellow onion, diced
– 1 stalk of celery, diced
– 1 carrot, diced
– 1 medium tomato, chopped
– 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
– 4 cups (600 g) shelled green peas or frozen sweet peas
– 2 ¼ cups (500 ml) vegetable broth
– 1 handful parsley leaves
– 1 bay leaf
– ½ teaspoon sea salt
– ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Method

Soak bread in water for a few minutes. Using hands, squeeze water from bread. Break ground beef into small pieces in a large bowl, add bread and remaining ingredients. Using hands, quickly and gently mix meat mixture just until all ingredients are evenly combined (do not overmix). Chill mixture at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour. Moisten hands with water, then roll meat mixture between palms into golf-ball-size balls. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add meatballs, separating them so they are not touching. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown and firm to the touch. Repeat till all the meatballs are cooked. Reserve.

For the peas, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring often, until caramelized. Add tomato and cook, stirring often, until the mixture begins to stick to the pot, about 3-5 minutes. Add garlic, peas, broth, parsley, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until flavors have melded and the broth has reduced, 25–30 minutes. Remove bay leaf. Add meatballs to peas and cook 10 minutes until heated through.

kale gimlet_thefrancofly_Jessie Kanelos Weiner

A few weeks ago, I got to tell my long story about how I ended up in Paris on my favourite podcast Radio Cherry Bombe.  Although it really is like any other coming-of-age story set to a slightly soundstage-y backdrop, I talked about the moment where I finally decided I would move back to Paris for good and commit to the complicated life of being a professional illustrator.  And I would not look back, doing whatever  I could to manifest that dream.  Luckily Paris has introduced me to many other wonderful women who have moved to this difficult city and have created and pursued their own projects with great zeal and grace.

Kale gimlet how-to_thefrancofly_Jessie Kanelos Weiner

My great friend Kristen Beddard of The Kale Project’s new book Bonjour Kale: A Memoir of Paris, Love, and Recipes (Sourcebooks) is a heartfelt story of starting over in a freakishly foreign place like Paris, sans job, sans projects.  The biggest cultural difference was she couldn’t even find her ideal comfort food, kale.  Kale in France had disappeared throughout the decades as it become an unpalatable taste of wartimes.  In the meantime, it had even become a decorative plant. When I moved to Paris 8 years ago, I chuckled seeing kale cozied in next to the pansies in my neighborhood flower garden.  (Foraging for Dummies, right up my ally!)  

kale gimlet_thefrancofly_Jessie KanelosI can truly say that Kristen was one of the courageous people who brought a new wave of eating to the French plate.  Three years ago, I tried and tried to pitch veggie-based cookbooks to editors and it was firmly always “too soon”.  But now there is cashew cream served in carnivorous restaurants, organic grocery stores outnumbering their contemporaries, a general curiosity about things like chia seeds and how to eat better to feel better.  And that’s no small feat in a country steeped in tradition like France.  Bonjour Kale_thefrancofly_Jessie Kanelos Weiner

In honor of the release of Bonjour Kale today, Kristen let me illustrate one of her favorite recipes from her book, a kale gimlet.  It’s a sweet and spicy ode to her single days before her monumental move to Paris.  

Order Bonjour Kale HERE.

Oh, and I also illustrated the cover, too!🙂

_

Kale and Tequila Gimlet (from Bonjour Kale by Kristen Beddard, Sourcebooks)

Ingredients:
1/2 bunch kale
1/2-1 inch piece fresh ginger
1 1/2 shots lime juice
1 shot tequila
1/2 shot Grand Marnier
Agave syrup, to taste
1 handful cilantro
6 ice cubes

Preparation:
Juice the kale and ginger in a juicer. Measure out one shot of the juice. Pour the kale-ginger juice, lime juice, tequila, Grand Marnier, agave syrup and cilantro into a shaker with the ice. Shake vigorously. Pour and enjoy!

Yield: 1 drink

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