Friday, September 24, 2010


A week on the water

My daughter came home from her new legal internship in Paris the other day delighted that there was another Franco-American intern at the law firm, just like herself. The girls, after comparing notes, realized they had alot in common. "Maman," Marianne exclaimed, "Her mother even has the same cookbooks as you... Joy of Cooking, Betty Crocker, Julia Childs...!"

 I sometimes tease my daughter  saying--with due reverence--that if anything were ever to happen to me, my really good recipes were all to be found in those three books. I'd add one more to that list, a handy volume of south of France favorites, A Week on the Water, Fandango & Tango Cuisine Scrapbook.

It's a charming compilation of menus and recipes served during a week on board two boutique hotel barges, The Tango and The Fandango. Full of souvenirs, this scrapbook of delicious recipes includes photos, sketches, wine selections and napkin folding instructions, and is as fun and easy to read as its recipes are to prepare.

These are tried and true specialties made over years of canal and river cruising by barge owners and head chefs, Hazel Young and son, Daniel.  Hazel, one of the most well-known and respected hotel barge operators in France, authored the cookbook to satisfy guests who repeatedly asked for the recipes of gourmet meals served on board.

From how to reduce balsamic vinegar or make an aïoli mayonnaise, to sautée chicken in wine sauce Languedoc style or prepare ravioli stuffed with winter squash, this culinary treasure trove will tempt you with a wide variety of easy to execute recipes you'll want to prepare again and again.

All measurements are converted from metric to standard American, and certain ingredients explained. The book even has a section on weekly preparations to make in advance, butter decorations and famous homemade soups from all over France. What more could you ask?

A Week on the Water, ideally suited to the American cook experimenting with French cooking, can be purchased by mail or downloaded online:     Don't miss learning about the hotel barges, The Tango and The Fandango, on this site, either!

 Text ©2010 P.B.Lecron


  1. Love the photos, and the name of the boat is a dream of mine, along with Flamenco dancing...oh la la!

  2. I love the picture of the boat !
    Very nice review by the way :)