French Travel Blog | France Just For You
  • French Travel Blog

Guest Chef Judy Link's Normandy Chicken

Basket of apples
by Judy Link, France Just For You's October guest chef (and Laura's mom) We loved going to visit Laura and her family when they lived in Normandy . The food is amazing with all the cream, butter and cheese! On a fall Sunday when we were visiting, after apple picking, we stopped at a charming auberge and were served a dish very similar to this one. I love making Normandy Chicken in the fall because the apples are in season and the dish warms you to the soul thanks to the Calvados (apple brandy)! It serves 4 people, and feel free to substitute the Calvados...

Les Talmouses - Medieval Cheese Puffs

Cuisine Chinon Castle
When it comes to medieval cooking, I am definitely not an expert. I did some research and found this recipe on Cluny Museum's site. This is a museum in Paris dedicated to the Middle Ages, so they know what they are talking about. Talmouses are somewhat like cheese puffs with a triangle shape. There are barely any ingredients, and once you get the hang of how to pinch them into triangles, they are very easy to make. Ingredients 1 ready-made crust (I used normal crust, but I have seen recipes with puff pastry as well) 1 cup of greek yogurt or sour cream (I used fromage blanc) 4 oz cheese, cut...

The most charming medieval villages and towns in France

Pérouges Place du Marché
by Laura Crotet, Senior Trip Planner for France Just For You Because medieval times go back long before Columbus set his feet on American soil, there is always a feeling of wonder and romance when I am in medieval towns. There are many medieval towns and villages across France, and Europe. Carcassonne is probably the diamond in the crown, followed closely by Sarlat. But I would like to share a few of my personal, lesser-known favorite medieval towns and villages that feel like a real fairytale, and definitely are worth a detour. Provins Located about 60 miles...

Monique's Feuilleté au Jambon

Feuilleté
- Laura Crotet, Senior Travel Planner at France Just For You This recipe comes from my mother-in-law, Monique. It is not necessarily a typical dish from Burgundy, but Monique is "bourguignonne" through and through. She makes this feuilleté (a pastry) a lot, as it is a big crowd pleaser and super easy and economical (she had 5 kids to feed!). For my small family, I only make a half-feuilleté, © Laura Crotet INGREDIENTS 2 puff pastries (thawed if frozen) 1/2 cup butter 1/2 cup flour 1-1/2 cups milk ham small can of mushrooms (optional) pepper I NSTRUCTIONS Start by making a...

What we love about fall in France

Burgundy vineyards in the fall
by Laura Crotet, Senior Trip Planner at France Just For You Fall has always been my favorite season. When I lived in the United States, it meant football (Go Packers!), cute sweaters, and pumpkin spice lattes. Fall continues to be my favorite season now that I live in France, even though there is not much football going on. Each region is great to visit during this wonderful season. What I love about fall in France is: the vineyards exploDe in color ...turning the countryside into a true wonderland. And since so much of France is covered in vineyards, no matter where you are, you...

Things to do in a Day in Dijon

Dijon charming street view
A visit to Dijon, the capital of Burgundy : Places to see and things to do by Laura Crotet, Senior Trip Planner at France Just For You Jean-François' whole family still lives in and around Dijon , so we go there every time we are on a family visit. It is a city that has greatly changed over the last few years. It has become more dynamic, lots of students give a good vibe to the town, plus the historic and architectural elements have really been improved, making Dijon a great place to visit today. The first time I came, Véronique, Jean-François’ oldest sister, insisted on taking me...

Why travel with France Just For You during covid?

Off the beaten path with France Just For You
2020 & 2021 have had an impact on the travel industry. As travelers all over the world are starting to re-pack their suitcases, the way we travel has also undergone changes. Now more than ever, travelers want to get off the beaten track, away from the hordes of buses and huge chain hotels. How can France Just For You help? This is where France Just For You can help you plan a wonderful French itinerary based on our experience of crafting off-the-beaten track itineraries that provide you a local adventure and authentic, unique experiences in France . Our objective is to...

Truffle Mushroom Pasta

truffle mushroom pasta
for 2/3 people Truffle has such as special taste that you should not go for a complicated recipe to enjoy its flavours...The best is to grate it on pasta or in eggs. You may keep fresh truffles in a box in the fridge together with whole eggs...it will give the taste to the eggs. What we do when we have a fresh truffle (not really often): we grate it in butter and place this truffle butter in ice-cube compartments in the freezer. Then, when we want to flavor a dish with truffles, we just get a butter-cube or 2. INGREDIENTS a small can of truffles in the oil or even better a little piece of...

My Best Places to Visit in Normandy

Normandy countryside with apple orchard and cows
By Laura Crotet, Senior Trip Planner at France Just For You Normandy has so much to offer, it is difficult to decide the best places to visit. I used to live in Evreux, which is located towards the eastern edge of Normandy, about 1-1/2 hours outside of Paris. My family and I loved living there, and we even lived in a 200-year-old typical half-timbered thatched roof house called a chaumière . The Crotet family Chaumière, ©Laura Crotet We enjoyed discovering the region, and it is a large one. Running along the English Channel , from Dieppe...

Normandy Apple Cake Recipe

Normandy Apple Cake Recipe
We used to live in Normandy and absolutely loved the food there. Plus, being from Wisconsin, dairy products like butter, cream, and cheese , were always important ingredients in many of my favorite foods. My friend Magali, a true Norman through and through, shared this recipe with me. It is a family favorite because it is easy to make, and so yummy with its buttery smoothness and sweet apples. I think it will become a family favorite chez vous as well. Ingredients: ½ cup melted butter (I personally use salted butter for the extra tanginess) ½ cup flour 1...

Essential Packing List for your Trip to France

packing for a trip to France
Packing for any big trip can be complicated, and you can already find lots of general advice on the internet about not forgetting your tickets and such. So, I am going to give you my best and personal advice for how to pack for France specifically . On y va! A Visa or Mastercard with a chip and a pin code . This is the standard in France and will facilitate all payments while here. A credit card with a chip & 4-digit code will make life easier, ©Pixabay A smartphone with a good international plan Your phone can be helpful in many ways :...

Tian de Ratatouille Recipe

Vegetables for Tian de Ratatouille recipe
Jean-François and I are getting ready to re-plant our vegetable garden, and thinking of all the delicious tomatoes, zucchini and other vegetables and fruits we will enjoy this summer made me hungry for some ratatouille . However, I do enjoy making this tian version which uses the same veggies, but I think looks prettier. Laura ready to cook the tian, © Laura Crotet Instructions Slice the eggplant into thin rounds. Put them in a bowl and lightly salt them. Let them sit for about 15-20 minutes to give their water, then rinse and pat dry. You can brush a little olive oil on each...

The Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild Villa and Gardens

Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild from garden
Step back into the glamour of the Belle Epoque Riviera with a visit to the beautiful Ephrussi de Rothschild villa and surrounding gardens – the jewel of the Côte d’Azur . The Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild and some fountains, © Max Pixel The History of the villa and its creator Béatrice de Rothschild , daughter of the famous banker and art collector Baron Alphonse de Rothschild, was born in 1864. She was intelligent and charming, and enjoyed living in some of the most opulent homes from that time in Paris and around Paris. She married Maurice Ephrussi in 1883...

A day in Monaco

View of Monaco at night
Monaco is the second smallest country in the world (the total area is not even 1 square mile), preceded by the Vatican. However, with almost 40,000 inhabitants, it is the most densely populated country in the world. This tiny coastal nation on the French Riviera brings into mind glamour, luxury, royalty, and money – the latter of which is apropos because you do need money to spend a day here as everything is expensive. But who doesn’t want to feel like a millionaire even for one day, so why not? Monaco's History The history of Monaco is directly linked with the...

Spring carrots with lentils and grains

Spring carrots
This year for Easter, we decided to do a brunch instead of dinner. I did however, want to make a Spring-themed dish using new Spring carrots. This is an easy recipe and packed with protein, so it is great for your vegetarian night. Ingredients For 4 people 1 cup green lentils 1 cup grains (I used barley, but you could use farro, quinoa, etc.) 1 bunch of Spring carrots (cleaned and trimmed) 3T butter 2T honey A few saffron threads A handful of roasted almonds ½ cup crumbled feta (or more if you love feta) 1T cidar vinegar French mint leaves Pepper to taste Instructions Cook the grains and the...

Biking in the Loire Valley

View of Blois from the bike path
I know that for a lot of people, the idea of biking in the French countryside, through the romantic rolling vineyards, just to luckily happen upon a cute little outdoor market in a picturesque village is the stuff that travel dreams are made of. For me, it means a sore behind and legs, bugs in my face and thinking all the time “why didn’t I just drive”? Well, I wanted to test a new itinerary for biking in the Loire Valley , in the Blois – Château de Chambord area. They announced beautiful weather for the week, my daughter Célestine was ready and willing, so we did it. And I must admit, I was...

Things to do in Bordeaux

Place de la Bourse, Bordeaux
The area around the city of Bordeaux is a rich and wonderful spot to visit. And the city itself, France’s 5th largest, is an exciting and dynamic place to spend a few days. Over about the last 25 years, the city has come a long way with a very successful regeneration program launched by former prime minister and Bordeaux mayor Alain Juppé. In the 90’s, the buildings were black from pollution, the riverbanks were lined with abandoned warehouses, and the city seemed closed into itself. Things quickly changed, and in 2007, Bordeaux was listed as an UNESCO World Heritage site , making it the...

Recipe for Riz à la Catalane

This recipe is quick to make so great for a week night meal that everyone will enjoy. Plus the Catalane touch makes it a little spicy, especially depending on the heat of the chorizo you choose. Bon appétit, or as they say in Catalan, tenir gana ! Photo: A real treat - Laura's homemade Riz à la Catalane, Laura Crotet Ingredients For 4 people 1-1/4 cup long grain rice 7 oz chorizo (more or less) 1 cup tomato sauce ½ onion 1 garlic clove 1 yellow pepper 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence 2 cups chicken or veggie bouillon Salt and pepper I nstructions Finely chop...

Discover France on a motorcycle (New for 2022!)

A bike overlooking the French coast
For a rare few, traveling to other countries as well as welcoming others into their own country is in their blood. This is true for the Loire Valley based Martinez - Thyebaut family. The dynasty starts with Florence and Philippe, Emilie’s parents who ran a wonderful B&B in a 15th century farmhouse near Chinon called Les Bournais. They shared their passion for the Loire Valley , as well as their kindness and joie de vivre , with all their guests. They are now newly retired and enjoying this chapter of their lives. Next of course is Emilie and Guillaume . Wanting...

Visiting Languedoc Roussillon & the Cathar country

A view of the city of Carcassonne in Languedoc Roussillon, France
Part of the bigger Languedoc-Roussillon region, the Roussillon area spans from the Spanish border to the city of Narbonne and includes the eastern fringe of the Pyrenees mountains. This area is also known as the French Catalonia , and the history and traditions of the Catalans are still very present today. The height of Catalan power was reached in the 13th and 14th centuries when the Franco-Catalan frontier was fixed along the base of the Corbières hills north of Perpignan. But Jaime I made the mistake of dividing his kingdom between his two sons at his death. Thus, the...

Pages

Tour finder
Email Émilie
Search