Soups & Salads

Velvety Carrot Soup

Carrots Velouté

Serves 2

alt=“Carrot Soup Velouté Healthy Homestyle French Cooking and Recipes Le Menu Maison Food Blog Bruno Gaget”

This simple soup recipe is a French traditional family favorite that combines the nutritional value of carrots along with a subtle amount of the irresistible Indian spices of cumin or curry. Warming, healthy and délicieux!


6 medium to large sized carrots

1 large red onion

1 garlic clove

4 tsp butter

1 tbsp olive oil

1 branch of fresh fennel (anise)

1/2 tsp of curry or cumin

1 cup chicken stock

1/4 cup white wine

3 cups water

3 branches of thyme

salt and pepper to taste

alt=“Chopped Carrots for Velouté Soup Recipe Healthy Homestyle French Cooking Le Menu Maison Food Blog Bruno Gaget”


•• Peel the skins from the carrots and throughly cleanse under clear water to remove any residue of dirt. •• Remove the ends and then cut the length of each carrot into thin slices, approximately 1/8-inch thick. ••

•• To prepare the onion, begin by chopping the top off, then cut the onion in half, leaving the root attached. •• Peel the skin away, discarding the brown layers until you are left with the white onion halves. •• Make 2 or 3 horizontal cuts into the first onion half, then cut down vertically, holding the onion together as you chop. •• Repeat with same cuts with the other half.••

•• Under running water, cleanse the fennel branch and remove some of the feathery leaves for presentation, then cut the branch lengthwise into thin slices.••

•• Using a large pan, heat the butter and olive oil over a medium low heat. •• When the butter begins to bubble, add the carrots first, followed by the onion, garlic, fennel, cumin and salt and pepper. •• Gently mix together, cover the pan with a lid and cook for about 10 minutes, occasionally stirring.  •• Add a 1/4 cup of water or white wine to déglacer and continue to cook and mix for another 2 minutes. •• Add the chicken stock, 3 cups of water and 3 branches of fresh thyme. •• Continue to cook for 30 minutes over a low heat until the carrots are throughly softened. ••

•• Remove the thyme branches and allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes. •• Using a hand-held blender, blend the mixture until it becomes a velvety smooth “velouté”. •• Transfer the velouté into a large serving bowl or individual bowls. •• Sprinkle a few fennel leaves for presentation and serve with a warm crusty French bread and butter.••

•• Voila! ••

alt=“Homemade French Bread Le Menu Maison Bruno Gaget Healthy Homestyle Cooking and Recipes Food Blog”

Fennel & Orange Salad

Salade de Fenouil et d’Orange

Serves 2

alt=“Fennel & Orange Salad Healthy French Recipes Homestyle Cooking Le Menu Maison Bruno Gaget”


1/2 medium bulb of fresh fennel

1/2 fresh lemon

white vinegar

olive oil

peeled orange slices 

sea salt and pepper to taste


•• Chop 1/2 of the fennel bulb into bite-size pieces. •• Set aside a few sprigs of the feathery green leaves for garnish. •• Reserve the other half the fennel bulb for another salad or healthy snacking. •• Arrange the chopped fennel onto a serving dish. •• Squeeze the juice of 1/2 fresh lemon over the top of the chopped fennel. •• Drizzle a few drops of white vinegar and 1/2 tbsp of olive oil, also over the top. •• Garnish this simple salad with the sprigs of fennel leaves and a few orange slices, halved or bitesize, as desired. ••  Sea salt and pepper to taste. ••

•• Bon Appétit! ••

Apple Butternut Squash Soup

Soupe de Courge Musquée à la Pomme

Serves 4



Is apple and butternut squash picking on your list of fun-fall-foliage activities? Then you’ll want to create this nutritious and delicious recipe from our French healthy homestyle menu to yours.




1 medium apple

1 medium butternut squash

1 clove fresh garlic crushed

1 red onion chopped

1 green onion chopped

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup white wine, Chardonnay

1/2 cup calvados or cognac

1 small branch of fresh sage

2 sprigs of fresh thyme leaves

sea salt & pepper to taste

1 quart chicken stock

dollop of crème fraîche per serving

fresh parsley chopped to garnish



•• Peel and dice the apple and butternut squash. •• In a large cast iron dutch oven style pot, combine the apple, butternut squash, garlic, red and green onions. •• Cook over a medium-low heat and then introduce the butter, cooking the mixture until it becomes a soft and golden sauce. •• Déglacer the pot by adding both white wine and calvados. •• Stirring often and gently, add fresh sage, thyme, sea salt and pepper to taste. •• Let it reduce. •• Add the chicken stock and a little water, if needed to arrive at the equivalent of the butternut mixture. •• Cover the pot and cook for approximately 15-20 minutes over a medium-low heat. •• Once the mixture is completely softened allow it to cool for 5 minutes, removing the herb branches. •• Using a hand-held blender, mix until smooth. •• Serve with a dollop of thick crème fraîche or butter and sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley. ••

• Délicieux ••

And don’t forget the warm and crusty bread and butter!

alt=“French bread Couronne Valencia Bruno Gaget Food Photography"

Vegetable Stock

Bouillon de Légumes

alt=“Recipe for vegetable stock with leftover vegetable scraps Food Photography Bruno Gager"


Whether you’re whipping up a soup, stew, sauce or risotto, there is nothing that beats having your own homemade vegetable stock on hand. With a little advance planning and some up-cycling of unused portions of vegetables, you can create a nutrient-rich base for use in any stock. So instead of tossing away those carrot root ends or left over Brussels sprouts, save these veggie bits and pieces in a container or bag and store for future use in the freezer. This no-nonsense recipe is perfect for getting a jump on your upcoming entertaining and holiday gatherings!


1 onion

3 carrots

4 celery stalks

1/2 fennel bulb

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1/2 bouquet fresh parsley

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon whole peppercorns

2 tablespoons of olive oil

alt=“Fennel and zucchini in a dish at home ingredients for vegetable stock recipe and food photography by Bruno Gaget"


leeks – particularly the green portions

Brussels sprouts – leaves and bulbs

fennel – including the feathery leaves

carrots – root ends and tips

yellow squash


alt=“Fresh parsley at the French farmers market Fontainebleau France food photography Bruno Gaget"


•• Thoroughly wash all of the fresh and up-cycled vegetables. •• Rough chop, as necessary. •• Using a large enameled stockpot, mix the vegetables with 2 tablespoons olive oil. •• Over a low heat, allow the vegetables to sweat (reduce) for approximately 10-15 minutes. •• This process softens the vegetables and also brings forth the flavors. ••

•• Add enough water to entirely cover the vegetables, noting that additional water levels will dilute the flavors. •• Lay the herbs on top of the water and cover with a lid. •• Bring the mixture up to a slow boil then reduce your heat to low and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour.  •• Taste test for readiness. ••

•• Place the stockpot on a stable and heat resistant surface and remove all of the vegetables and herbs with a slotted spoon. •• Set your strainer (preferably a chinois strainer) over a large bowl and pour the liquid through.  •• For a clearer consistency, place a sheet of cheese cloth over the strainer and then pour the stock through. ••

•• Divide the stock into airtight storage containers and allow to completely cool before refrigerating or freezing. •• Store the stock in the refrigerator for up to one week or freeze for up to 3 months. ••

•• Lastly, leaving nothing to waste, the cooked vegetable mixture makes for a healthy and tasty treat for your canine companion! •• 

Sliced Cucumbers in Crème Fraîche with Fresh Chive

Concombre à la Crème Fraîche et à la Ciboulette

Serves 2



2 cucumbers

1 8oz container of créme fraîche

2 tbsp whole milk

several springs of fresh chive

salt and pepper to taste

optional: a few droplets of freshly squeezed lemon



•• Using a vegetable peeler, remove the outer skin from the cucumber, exposing the flesh.  •• Cut the cucumber into small rounded slices of approximately 1/8 of an inch. ••

•• In a large mixing bowl, combine the container of créme fraîche with 2 tbsp of whole milk. •• Season with salt and pepper to taste. Using a small wire whisk, blend the ingredients to an even and creamy consistency. ••

•• Add the sliced cucumbers and toss to coat. Arrange on a serving platter and sprinkle with finely cut chives. •• 

•• simple et savoureux ••

alt=“Cucumbers Concombres Creme Fraiche Healthy French Recipes Le Menu Maison Bruno Gaget”


2 Comments Add yours

  1. cindy knoke says:

    Looks divine!

    1. Joanne Gaget says:

      Merci Beaucoup Cindy!

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