Since French markets (including large grocery stores) typically close earlier than their American counterparts, one can find oneself in a precarious position food-wise. Especially if you're me and used to grocery shopping late in the evening, sans kiddos. I recently found myself with fifteen minutes in a French grocery store to come up with 4 meals off the top of my head. Since unfamiliar grocery stores with labels in a foreign language are more difficult to navigate than say my local Harmons back home, I was forced to come up with very simple meals. I thought I'd share my ideas since they can be easily replicated in the U.S. I find that easy but delicious meals are always nice to have on hand.
Breakfast (2): Whole wheat artisan bread, fruit, good yogurt (and perhaps an egg if you have time)
Lunch: Cheese, salami, bread, fruit
Dinner: Chicken with creamy Dijon sauce, roasted potatoes, sauteed garden vegetables, butter lettuce salad
To make the dinner first prepare the roasted potatoes...toss cubed potatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper & roast on 425 for 45 minutes. If you do a small cube, lessen the cooking time. If you roast small red potatoes whole, then you may have to up the cooking time a little.
Once you have these in the oven, rinse and crisp the lettuce in a salad spinner (OXO makes the best version). Place in refrigerator.
Now chop spring onions (available at farmers markets in the U.S.), zucchini, mushrooms and perhaps yellow squash. Set aside.
Heat a cast iron pan (or frying pan) over medium heat (or just a tad higher). Throw in a few tablespoons of butter. Season 4 trimmed chicken breasts with s&p and cook about 8 minutes each side. Once cooked throughout, set aside the chicken breasts on a platter. Using the same pan (and the chicken drippings), make a cream sauce to pour over the chicken. Add about 8 ounces of creme fraiche* and about 3 tablespoons of Dijon mustard (I prefer the Maille label) to the pan.
Quickly saute your pre-cut vegetables in a wok with a little olive oil and herb seasoning and you're good to go! You'll want to saute the veggies on medium high heat.
This meal was super easy to prepare, required simple ingredients, and provoked my husband to enjoy two full plates, which made me very happy :)
* While creme fraiche is available in the U.S. at fine grocery stores, it can be a bit pricey. If you want to substitute heavy cream, that would be delicious too. Just make sure you simmer the sauce on medium heat for awhile to allow it to reduce. You want your sauce to thicken a little before pouring it over your chicken.