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There's no reason to relegate French cuisine to date nights at a fancy restaurant. Here are ten authentic French recipes that are easy to prepare at home and will have your kids speaking in French accents. Or at least saying 'Merci'!
1. Crespeou: Don't be turned off by the fancy sounding name. A crespou is a traditional French breakfast or brunch dish that's basically like a stack of thin omelettes topped with herbs. You can do this!
2. Croque Monsieur: They may not be the healthiest thing in the world, but when you've earned a splurge the croque monsieur is a delicious way to blow through some calories. And, because it's essentially just a fancy baked ham and cheese sandwich, kids will love it too.
3. Clafoutis: Imagine a brunch dish that's half way between flan and a pancake with strawberries on top. Clafoutis look and sound fancy but whip up faster than most basic breakfast dishes and can be customized to include whatever fruit you have on hand.
4. Gâteau au Yaour (Yogurt Cake): This simple recipe for a tasty moist cake is so easy to make that it's said to be one of the very first recipes that young French kids learn to make by themselves. You can add fruit or other flavoring, but the original classic yogurt cake flavor is pretty hard to beat.
6. Cassoulet: Cassoulets are French casseroles involving sausage and beans, which take a long time to cook in an oven but often work well in a slow cooker. This winter cassoulet recipe incorporates white beans with sausage, tomatoes and carrots.
7. Gougères: Gougères are fluffy cheese and egg pastries that are surprisingly easy to make. They're also an addictive dinner party appetizer for adults and kids alike. Some people stuff their gougères with meats or veggies, but many prefer the simple airy texture of the plain version.
8. Quiche: Even if you're not at all familiar with French food, chances are that you've had quiche more than once. It's a crowd pleaser that can be served hot or room temperature for any meal of the day, with almost any combination of meats, cheeses and vegetables inside. One of the most popular versions is quiche lorraine.
9. Fondue: It may seem incredibly indulgent to set a huge pot of cheese sauce on your family's dinner table, but depending on what you're dipping into that cheese sauce, the overall nutritional profile of a fondue meal might not be so bad. Try steamed or fresh veggies and other healthy low fat dippers with a rich cheddar based fondue sauce.
10. Crepes: Crepes are one of the easiest, fastest, and most versatile French dishes to make yet many Americans never eat crepes unless they go out for breakfast. Try whipping up a batch of savory cheese and veggie crepes for dinner, or the classic Crepes Suzette for brunch.