la cuisine Paris - learning to cook like the French with Chef Julie Coppé


Star anise, cardamom, Szechuan peppercorns. As soon as Chef Julie Coppé encouraged the group of ten women enrolled in the Parisian Soiree cooking class to be bold and creative in our use of spices, I knew that we were in for a real treat. With a master's degree in political science and a technical degree in cooking, Julie is a versatile chef who spent three years under the tutelage of Alain Passard at the renowned restaurant L'Arpège (3 Michelin Stars). Well-versed in traditional French cooking, Julie's approach is innovative and fresh, perhaps because she likes to travel and expose her taste buds to new flavors.

Jane and Denise
Standing in front of our chopping boards at the cooking school, la cuisine Paris, we peeled potatoes for the Gratin Dauphinois, chopped apples for the Chicken Fricassée with cider and caramelized apples and learned how to spice up an old favorite like Poire Belle-Helene. Whether you're a newcomer to the kitchen or an experienced cook, you're sure to learn some invaluable culinary tips along the way. Wondering why my Gratin Daupinois is never the same as those served in French restaurants, Julie told us that we shouldn't wash the potatoes after peeling them because it removes the starch that thickens the sauce. 

Denise, the queen of caramelized mushrooms, at the stove.
Keeping a group of ten women focused on cooking rather than on talking about Paris wasn't an easy task, but Julie managed it with grace and charm. In record time, we prepared a delicious meal and enjoyed getting to know each other over dinner accompanied by wine. Many thanks to Nancy for organizing the evening. It was a really fun way to spend time with some of my favorite members of the Trip Advisor Paris Forum. I look forward to seeing all of you the next time that you're in town!

Conveniently located in the heart of the city, la cuisine Paris offers a wide variety of reasonably priced cooking classes that are sure to be one of the highlights of your visit. If, however, you would prefer to let Julie do all of the cooking, she will supply the ingredients and prepare a delightful meal at your apartment.

80 Quai de l'Hôtel de Ville, 
75004 Paris  



And finally, here's a shout out to Barbara Wills, the AFS-USA public relations officer for Mississippi, Kentucky and Tennessee. It was a pleasure to meet you and learn more about your work. Barbara encourages all Americans who would like to promote intercultural exchanges to consider hosting a foreign exchange student in the USA. AFS-USA website.

Jane, Nancy and Denise

Chef Julie serving the Gratin Dauphinois 
Gratin Dauphinois with Chicken Fricassée with cider and caramelized apples 

Comments

  1. ah, like me, too busy to eat at the end of the evening to get a photograph of the food. I'm glad you had such a great evening. Now I'm hungry for potatoes and cheese.

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    1. I was mainly worried that the others wouldn't share the food if I didn't help prepare it. ;)

      After reading your comment, I added a couple more pictures of what we made. What's amazing about the Gratin Dauphinois is that we didn't use any cheese!

      Sorry that there isn't a photo of the Poire Belle Helene - but I'm sure that you would agree with my priorities!

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  2. It was wonderful fun and the photos are a great reminder of the amazing meal which we prepared.
    nancyb

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    1. So, when are you going to surprise your friends and amaze your family by making this meal at home, Nancy! ;)

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  3. Everything looks so delicious! I really enjoyed Denise's post, too. I had the pleasure of meeting her in Paris last summer. It's so cool the two of you got to get together, and for such a fun activity.

    My husband would love this. He's a much better cook than me and enjoys a challenge. I would probably goof off taking photos and then reap the benefits of everyone's hard work at the end. :)

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    1. Did you post something about your get together with Denise on Any Port? It seems that I saw some photos or heard about it somewhere. TA is turning out to be a great way to meet people. I've had the pleasure of getting together with Denise a couple of times since she's in Paris on such a regular basis.

      You're lucky to be married to a man who likes to cook and who enjoys a challenge! Stephane has a couple of dishes that he likes to make. At the moment, his favorite is to bake an entire fish covered with sea salt.

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  4. I was one of the ones who goofed off taking photos and reaped the benefit in the end! It was a fun night with fun people!

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    1. You didn't goof off. I have photographic evidence that you worked hard for your meal!

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  5. oh I'm going to have to look at my recipe for the gratin, maybe it's just cream.

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    1. As a twist, Julie suggested putting a layer of roasted hazelnuts in a gratin made out of 2/3 potatoes and 1/3 turnips. She also said to use curry powder in the sauce in this version.

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  6. Denise can have her way with funghi chez moi, whenever her heart desires...

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    1. You're an IT genius! Congratulations for figuring out the security issues that prevented you from posting comments!

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  7. Great pictures and post Mary Kay... I am impressed with Julie Coppe's qualifications. Missed that bit at the time. (probably too busy chatting to Jo from Australia! Hello if you read this!)...... hey I also am now famous, Jane! LOL!

    Really fun evening I enjoyed it immensely. Thanks to Nancy for suggesting it.

    I have made a low fat version of the meal again at home for my husband,using quark and sprays of olive oil and it was a success. although frankly we prefer Jamie Olivers version of the duphanoise potatoes.

    It makes such a difference now knowing how to caramelise things properly. So simple when you know how.

    Sylvia, I would be happy to caramalise funghi for you anytime!

    Love Denise from Bolton.

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  8. So glad you got to experience La Cuisine! looks like it was a great lesson!

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