A great source of vintage inspiration is a website called HP PRINTS a french website where you can buy original publications of vintage magazines. They have a great selection of magazines and old adverts of Chanel, some dating back to 1910. It was here we stumbled across an article on Coco Chanel titled ‘Chanel today’. It was a lifestyle feature about Chanel at work in her atelier, a kind of ‘day in the life of Chanel’. There are insights to her favourite food, including caviar and red wine every day!
First published in 1957, the article also features 4 recipes that were created by her personal chef Germaine (you think Chanel actually cooks??). They were created for her busy lifestyle as she ‘never has a minute to lose and squander’. The dishes are simple and quick to cook but also provide nutrition and energy. They were required to be attractive on the table ‘because she (Chanel) hates boredom’. So Germaine came up with some recipes and here is a selection we liked:
|2 ½ pints of milk||100 gr. of grated cheese||salt & pepper|
|125 gr. of flour||3 eggs||80 gr. of butter|
1. In a bowl, mix 2 ½ pints of milk with 125 gr. of flour, 80 gr. of butter, 75 gr. of grated cheese, 3 eggs, and a pinch of salt. Mix well into a dough then ass a pinch of pepper and grated nutmeg.
2. Prepare boiling salted water.
3. Roll the dough into small pieces of gnocchi, about the same size of a walnut
4. Drop the gnocchi in the boiling water, simmer and let them cook for 15 minutes
5. The gnocchi should be ready to the point when the dough is a little firm and elastic this time.
6. Drain and place them in an oven dish, cover with béchamel sauce, sprinkle the rest of your leftover grated cheese and place them in the oven for 15 minutes until brown.
I attempted this recipe at the weekend and what I do recommend is reducing the milk to only 250 ml and increasing the flour to around 200 gr (you can top up with extra milk if the dough looks a bit dry). The initial original recipe the ratio of milk to flour I felt wasn’t quite right (I used semi-skimmed which may be the reason), it seemed there was way too much milk for the amount of flour as suggested. And I think you can get away with 2 eggs not 3 as suggested – it makes about 2- 4 servings.