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Tuesday dinner with French Basketeer

By Ann | February 18, 2014


Roast chicken equals love. So, if you’re Andrea Drexulius, aka the French Basketeer, you cook a plump bird on Sunday and share it with your family and friends. And then you feast on the leftovers all week!

Andrea is a life-long Francophile and owner of French Basketeer, an online store that sells baskets imported from Morocco and Madagascar, beautiful paniers that could have been lifted straight from the marché in Aix-en-Provence. She’s also a blogger and creative home cook (her Instagram feed makes me drool on a regular basis).




Andrea divides her time between Laguna Beach, California and Beaune, France, at the heart of the Burgundy wine region. Her Southern California kitchen is “blessed to have so much wonderful produce year-round,” she says, while her kitchen in Beaune is “all about the classics. I cook a lot of Julia Child and Joel Robuchon-inspired cuisine.” Today, I’m delighted to share her weekly cooking routine (it’s inspiring)!

On Sunday she enjoys her “best meal of the week”:
In winter it’s usually a roast chicken. I’ve used a pomegranate-honey glaze and root vegetables that was awesome, but I am constantly changing it depending on what is seasonal.

It’s the last chicken leg and meat pieces and root vegetables, and I’ll make a cheater’s stock from the carcass. I keep veggie trimmings in the freezer to use for a quick stock.  Good chicken stock is something I must always have on hand, year-round, either a “proper” stock from a whole chicken, or an improv.

I toss a two-cup block of frozen stock into a pan to defrost ahead of time and add whatever fresh vegetables and mushrooms I find at the market. This might mean carrots, beans, potatoes, as well as a little dried pasta. The soup in my photo (top) has turkey meatballs, mushrooms, and basil chiffonade. It can be as high or low as you want; I usually brown the veggies a little and toss in the herbs and tomatoes raw.  Sometimes I’ll add caramelized pearl onions or root vegetables.  It’s never the same thing twice.

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday:
In winter, we could have black truffle risotto (again with the chicken stock). Or we might have a frisée salad with lardons and a poached egg.  Pizza is great during the week, and my favorite is with prosciutto and a few quail eggs, topped with fresh arugula and olive oil. I will make a meal of a green salad with a few chives and tomato, or baguette with a good cheese. I often substitute a 16-ounce green juice over a huge glass of ice for a meal; in fact most days I just have juice for breakfast. For a time-saving cooking tip: Go raw. A salad with raw carrots, celery, nuts, shaved Jerusalem artichokes with a little lemon vinaigrette makes a great meal.

Saturday, her “favorite slow-food meal of the week”:
After the farmers market I usually make some kind of fresh pasta — angel hair or ravioli — topped with wild mushrooms, Swiss chard and fresh ricotta as well as home-made arugula pesto. I cook while I chat with my mom and we all share the meal afterwards.

*Note from Ann: There’s no recipe today because I’m afraid roasting a chicken and then making stock was too much for this frazzled young parent. But perhaps you are one of those lovely, efficient people who keeps homemade chicken broth in the freezer? If you try Andrea’s soup, I hope you’ll let me know how it turns out!

(Photos from Andrea Drexulius.)

Topics: Tuesday dinner | 4 Comments »

4 Responses to “Tuesday dinner with French Basketeer”

  1. Lynde Says:
    February 21st, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    I think only Ina Garten regularly keeps homemade chicken stock in her freezer :). The rest of us are lucky to get the roasted chicken on the table! But a roasted chicken is sublime.

  2. Leigh Houck Says:
    February 22nd, 2014 at 4:37 pm

    We just met your delightful father at Pritikin and have purchased your book. He told us about how you expanded your French language skills through The French Word-a-Day blog. Of course, he told us about your blog and book, too, and now my husband and I are fans though will save your recipes for very special occasions. Many thanks for your blog!

  3. CK Says:
    February 23rd, 2014 at 8:25 pm

    Nothing makes me hungrier in Paris than walking by a butcher midmorning — especially in winter — and smelling the roasting chickens. How to concentrate on school/work for the rest of the morning with that aroma on the brain? Thanks for this post!

  4. French Basketeer Says:
    March 12th, 2014 at 6:10 pm

    Thank you for the lovely post, Ann!!! It seems I have been too busy with my instagram and in the kitchen to make the blog rounds lately, so sorry for seeing this a little late!

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