February’s Pick for A Fork & A Flick is French Kiss. French Kiss was filmed on location in Paris, the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of southeastern France, and Cannes. With some of the most photogenic cities on earth, and cinematography that makes love to the locations, this film is a charmer for Valentine’s Day. The film’s soundtrack itself will put you in a romantic mood. It is a quintessential French soundtrack filled with nostalgic songs like ‘La Vie en Rose’ by Louis Armstrong, ‘I Love Paris’ by Ella Fitzgerald and ‘Someone Like You’ by Van Morrison.
French Kiss is a 1995 bouncy romantic comedy about life, love and larceny. The American romantic comedy film is directed by Lawrence Kasdan and stars Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline. The film is about a woman, who is terrified of flying, forced to fly to France to confront her straying fiancé. Kate (Ryan) flies to Paris determined to win him back. However, nothing prepares her for Luc (Kline), a cunning sexy Frenchman with a gift for gab and a fondness for thievery. A self-proclaimed expert on affairs of the heart, Luc promises to help Kate win back her man, but is using her to smuggle a stolen diamond necklace. One star-crossed misadventure after another sweeps them across France, ultimately changing them in ways they never dreamed possible.
What to serve with romance that sweeps us across France? Well, French pastries of course! I went with French Macarons, which is a sweet meringue-based confection made with egg white, icing sugar, granulated sugar, almond powder or ground almond, and food coloring. The macaron is usually filled with ganache, buttercream or jam filling sandwiched between two cookies. The Parisian macarons are everywhere, and you can find them at many bakeries or even a Trader Joe’s to serve on your next date night. There is an infinity of flavors to select from. I can’t believe that I have not posted a Macron recipe yet until now!
3 egg whites
1/4 cup white sugar
1 2/3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup finely ground almonds
2 to 3 drops gel food coloring
Any filling or frosting
- Preheat oven to 285 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat.
- Beat egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment until whites are foamy; beat in white sugar and continue beating until egg whites are glossy, fluffy, and hold soft peaks. Sift confectioners' sugar and ground almonds in a separate bowl and quickly fold the almond mixture into the egg whites, about 30 strokes.
- Add the food coloring. Continue folding and turning, scraping down the bowl, until the batter is smooth and falls off the spatula in a thin flat ribbon, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Spoon a small amount of batter into a plastic bag with a small corner cut off and pipe a test disk of batter, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter, onto prepared baking sheet. If the disk of batter holds a peak instead of flattening immediately, gently fold the batter a few more times and retest.
- When batter is mixed enough to flatten immediately into an even disk, spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a plain round tip. Pipe the batter onto the baking sheet in rounds, leaving space between the disks. Let the piped cookies stand out at room temperature until they form a hard skin on top, about 1 hour.
- Bake cookies until set but not browned, about 10 minutes.
- Let cookies cool completely before filling. Fill with your favorite flavor of frosting or filling.