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Viviane Bauquet Farre
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Viviane Bauquet Farre is a chef, food and wine writer and photographer. She publishes, showcasing exuberant, modern, gourmet-yet-simple recipes that are grounded in a deep love for seasonal ingredients, which she buys from local farmers or harvests from her own vegetable garden. Her passion for ingredients extends to wine as well. The recipient of an advanced certificate from the WSET, Viviane frequently pairs unique wines with her dishes.

Viviane’s philosophy can be summarized in two simple sentences: Flavor first! And, most of all… Food is love.

Entries by Viviane Bauquet Farre

Pear Tart With Hazelnut Frangipane and Cardamom Chantilly

(0) Comments | Posted December 23, 2014 | 1:19 AM


Making a great tart might take a few steps, but it's a worthwhile project...

Tarts, whether savory or sweet, are one of my most favorite things to bake. Indeed, crafting tarts is a several-step process that makes me feel like I'm working on...

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Pistachio Biscotti With Kirsch-Soaked Dried Cherries

(0) Comments | Posted December 20, 2014 | 11:10 AM


Bake dozens to give to family and friends

This biscotti recipe has been in my repertoire for years... so many years, in fact, that I can't even remember when I came up with it. And, though I have countless versions of this recipe,...

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Potato Latkes With Leeks (Cooking With Didi Conn!)

(0) Comments | Posted December 16, 2014 | 12:01 PM

Joyful Hanukkah dinners gone past...

I remember as if it were yesterday: the first time my husband Marc and I attended Didi Conn's Hanukkah dinner. A fire was roaring in the fireplace, the dining room table was sumptuously dressed with peach-colored ranunculus, and Champagne was being poured into every glass. The feeling of warmth, of joy, was deep and immediate. It enveloped you like a warm fuzzy sweater.

No sooner had we arrived than trays and trays of latkes came out of the kitchen - each looking so appetizing and smelling so incredibly good that we all dove in. They were gone in a flash!

Since that magical winter's night, Didi and I have enjoyed getting together often to cook... and eat! Then one day it dawned on me: Wouldn't it be fun to do a French version of Didi's grandmother's famous latkes? Didi's response? "Let's do it!"

The classic Jewish potato pancakes get a French makeover!

But how would we "frenchify" (or should I say, Frenchy-fy) our latkes? One obvious solution would be to make them with leeks - after all, potatoes and leeks are a classic French combo. And how about cutting the potatoes shoestring size (just like pommes paille) to make those latkes extra delicate and crisp?

It was a good call. The latkes turned out so unbelievably delicious, and we had so much fun, that we decided to make this video. (Watch it above.)

Light, crisp and - thanks to the pan-fried leeks - a little sweet, these latkes will be right at home on your Hanukkah table (or at any festive dinner party).

So here's to the festival of lights... and to my sweet friend, Didi!

A vintage Champagne is a most sublime accompaniment to these latkes! Because of the lengthy time they spend resting, vintage Champagnes boast a creamy, luscious mouthfeel and fresh-baked brioche notes that are marvelous with the rich-tasting, slightly sweet latkes. (For a less expensive pour, try a "perry" (pear hard cider) or a sparkling apple hard cider.)


Potato latkes with leeks

makes 20 medium latkes or serves 4
active time: 30 min

1 1/4 lbs (565 g) russet potatoes
1 large leek
3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 extra large eggs - lightly beaten
olive oil for the pan
1/2 cup crème fraîche
dill sprigs as garnish

Step 1: Peel the potatoes and cut in half crosswise. Using a mandoline, cut each half crosswise again in julienne slices (about 4 cups). Alternatively, use a medium hand-grater or food processor with shredder attachment. Place the slices in a large bowl and fill bowl with cold water to cover. Set aside for at least 30 minutes, up to 2 hours. For the leek, cut the roots off and cut 2″ off the top of the dark green leaves. Cut the leek in half lengthwise and thoroughly rinse it to get all the grit out, but make sure to keep the leaves together. Lay the leek halves cut-side-down to drain on a clean kitchen towel. Then cut each half crosswise in 2 1/2″ pieces and cut each piece lengthwise in 1/8″ julienne slices. You should have about 2 1/2 cups of leek slices. Place in a separate bowl and set aside.

Step 2: Drain the potato slices and place on a clean kitchen towel. Blot out all moisture and transfer to a large bowl. Add the leek slices and toss well. Sprinkle with the flour, salt and pepper. Toss well again. Drizzle with the eggs and stir until well blended. Transfer to a colander or medium-meshed sieve and suspend over a bowl. Let the potato mixture drain for 15 minutes. This step will make the latkes crispier, as the mixture will lose a lot of moisture.

Step 3: Heat a large heavy-bottomed frying pan over high heat. Add enough oil to generously cover the pan. Using a regular fork and spoon, grab 1/3 cup of the potato/leek mixture and place in the hot oil. Shape each latke into a 1 1/2″ x 3″ patty and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes until golden-brown. Flip the latkes and sauté for another 2 minutes until golden-brown, reducing the heat when the pan gets very hot so that the oil doesn't burn. Transfer to a tray lined with paper towels. Repeat until the potato mixture has all been used up, adding more oil to the pan as necessary. Place the latkes on a serving platter. Spoon a dollop of crème fraîche on top of each latke. Garnish with a dill sprig and serve immediately.

Cook's note: For the crispiest latkes, serve them as soon as they're made. However, the latkes can be prepared up to 1 day ahead and refrigerated. To reheat, place on a baking tray and bake at 375°F (190ºC) for 6 to 7 minutes until sizzling.

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Peach Upside-Down Cake With Cognac Caramel

(0) Comments | Posted August 22, 2014 | 6:06 PM

This cake is perfection when made with the kind of fragrant peaches you can only get in mid-summer from a local farm.

To bring out the fruits' delightful flavors, the slices are pan-roasted and then drizzled with a buttery caramel spiked with Cognac. Moreover, the cake batter that...

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Corn on the Cob With Sumac Butter

(0) Comments | Posted August 19, 2014 | 5:41 PM

Corn on the cob is one of the best things about the summer season -- especially when the corn is super-sweet and juicy. And to get that kind of corn, I make a biweekly trip to a local farm where the corn is picked several times a day -- thus...

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Chilled Sweet Corn Soup With Coconut Milk

(0) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 5:18 PM

This chilled soup captures the essence of sweet summer corn in the most magnificent way -- it's as pure as can be, and all about the corn. And the coconut milk, which is the base for the soup, accentuates the sweetness of the corn even more and makes the soup...

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Grilled Potatoes With Rosemary, Garlic and Coarse Sea Salt

(0) Comments | Posted July 24, 2014 | 4:03 PM

Potatoes and rosemary -- a marriage made in food heaven, for sure! And although I love making the classic dish in the oven all year long, come summer I turn to the grill. One twist, though: here, the potatoes are marinated with the rosemary and garlic for 30 minutes before...

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Sour Beer and Cherry Punch

(0) Comments | Posted July 18, 2014 | 3:28 PM

I discovered sour beer while on vacation in Sonoma. We were dining at Woodfour, a brewery and restaurant in the charming town of Sebastopol. Not only do they serve some of the finest food in town, but they also make fantastic beers, right on the premises. Needless to...

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Sautéed Haricots Verts With Fresh Corn and Chives

(0) Comments | Posted July 10, 2014 | 3:52 PM

This is the ultimate summer side dish! It's quick and easy to make, amazingly fresh-tasting and, of course, delicious! Plus, it makes a great addition to all the summer meals you already know and love.

The only thing you have to watch out for is overcooking the veggies. We want...

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Apricot Smoothie With Almond Milk and Lemon Balm

(0) Comments | Posted June 19, 2014 | 4:33 PM

This smoothie is all about the marvelous flavor of ripe apricots. The roasted almonds and almond milk add a nutty flavor to the drink, without making it rich... and the lemon balm infuses it with its delicate herbal essence.

The smoothie is refreshing, light and incredibly delicious -- perfect for...

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Lemon Souffle Pancakes With Strawberries

(0) Comments | Posted May 29, 2014 | 5:11 PM

When you feel like having a luxurious breakfast at home, give these soufflé pancakes a try. They're deliciously lemony and as fluffy as can be, thanks to the beaten egg whites that are gently folded in. Served with fresh strawberries and a drizzle of maple syrup, the warm cakes make...

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Strawberry Cosmopolitan With Ginger Liqueur and Rhubarb Bitters

(0) Comments | Posted May 22, 2014 | 4:44 PM

Locally grown strawberries, whether from your own backyard or a small farm, bear no resemblance to their commercial counterparts. They're usually small and imbued with a dense crimson color through their core -- and they're tiny bombshells of flavor! No wonder children and adults alike get addicted to the fetching...

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Ramp Pesto

(0) Comments | Posted May 15, 2014 | 3:49 PM

Because ramps are only available for a few short weeks at the beginning of spring, you have to relish them while you can. Today, the dainty wild leeks find their way into a truly delicious pesto.

When consumed raw, ramps are just as pungent, spicy and overwhelming to the taste...

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Homemade Cultured Butter

(2) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 1:07 PM


My love affair with making my own dairy products started with my first batch of ricotta -- an event that changed my cooking life. Until then, I just hadn't realized how effortless it is to make fresh cheeses, crème...

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Olive Oil-Thyme Bundt Cake With Candied Meyer Lemon Peels and Citrus Compote

(0) Comments | Posted April 15, 2014 | 4:28 PM


Who doesn't love the look of a Bundt cake? They're so dramatic and elegant that they make your mouth water in an instant! But this Bundt cake is not just about its looks. It delivers on flavor too... in spades!

Here, extra virgin...

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Salted Marcona Almond and Black Sesame Brittle With Coriander

(0) Comments | Posted April 11, 2014 | 9:57 PM


If you're a fan of brittle, you'll fall in love with this recipe. The flavor-packed, crunchy bites are utterly addictive... even if you don't have a sweet tooth!

Pan-roasted coriander seeds and black sesame seeds are tossed in a luscious syrup with salted...

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Popcorn With Rosemary Butter and Parmesan

(0) Comments | Posted April 3, 2014 | 5:50 PM


Movie night is a big event in our house, especially after a busy workweek. And the evening is never complete without a bowl of homemade popcorn!

This recipe is my husband Marc's favorite... The savory Parmesan and the aromatic rosemary, briefly pan-fried in...

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Meyer Lemon Mousse With Candied Lemon Peels

(0) Comments | Posted March 27, 2014 | 6:25 PM


This Meyer lemon mousse is the kind of dessert that will make your taste buds come alive -- full of delicious tanginess, dreamily aromatic and as light as a cloud. The base for the mousse is a lemony egg custard. It's the only...

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Root Vegetable Hash Browns With Scallions

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2014 | 5:57 PM


Potatoes might be the most popular vegetable to make hash browns, but other root veggies lend themselves marvelously to this beloved comfort food. Here, baby potatoes are mixed with sweet potatoes, carrots and parsnips -- giving these hash browns heaps of texture, color...

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Open-faced Avocado Hummus Sandwich With Pickled Shallots and Baby Spinach

(0) Comments | Posted March 17, 2014 | 9:39 PM


Here's a sandwich that's easy to assemble, healthy and quite spunky! Indeed, the pickled shallots bring a marvelous contrast to the creamy avocado hummus and the hefty whole-wheat pitas (which I love to use for this sandwich). Drizzled with avocado oil...

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