Sunday 30 January 2011

Did you know about the show that students who have just finished a French drama workshop are going to perform?

The show performed by students who have followed a ten weeks' French drama course will take place at:
The Comedy Box at The Hen & Chicken in Bedminster on Tuesday 1st February at 8.30pm.
Do come along to watch or join in:
Jeux (games), Créations (short pieces) et Mystère ( mystery) !
To watch a video of the performances of some of the students or to find out more about the show, go to

Some of the students on stage last May.

Monday 24 January 2011

Don't miss the French cookery workshop for anyone with a GCSE level in French

Alliance Française de Bristol is offering a French course in cookery starting on Thursday, 3rd February in Clifton.
The course is run by one of our French tutors who is also a chef. People taking part will be able to prepare delicious French dishes under the supervision of the French tutor, Iza, and then take them home to share with friend, partner, spouse...
The last French cookery workshop before Christmas was very popular. Here is what one of the students in the French class had to say:
I thoroughly enjoyed all four evenings spent cooking with Iza. I not only learnt new recipes but also lots of 'chef's tips' and technical french.  Iza is encouraging and the atmosphere is relaxed. I can't wait to go again!  J B, Cotham

 If you wish to join the workshop, find more info:

Here is the photo of a happy chef!!

And here is a nice Winter recipe selected by Iza. Bon appétit!

Soupe à l’oignon
Pour 6 personnes


•    1 kg d'oignons jaunes
•    100 g de beurre
•    2 gousses d'ail
•    1 branche de thym
•    1 litre et demi de bouillon de volaille
•    1 baguette
•    250 g de gruyère


Eplucher et émincer les oignons.
Eplucher et écraser l’ail.
Lier ensemble les branches de thym.
Mesurer le liquide.
Chauffer le beurre doucement jusqu’à l’état de beurre noisette.
Faites revenir les oignons à allure modérée et à couvert.
Ajouter l’ail et le thym et couvrir.
Baisser le feu et cuire à couvert et à feu doux une dizaine de minutes jusqu’à ce que les oignons deviennent mous et translucides.
Verser le liquide et cuire dix minutes à compter de la reprise d’ébullition.
Saler et poivrer même si on déconseille de poivrer les potages, c’est très judicieux avec la soupe à l’oignon.
Pendant ce temps détailler la baguette en rondelles, les sécher au four.
Lorsque la soupe est prête (goûter et faire un peu réduire pour lui donner plus de densité)
Enlever le thym  bien sûr!
Préchauffer le four à 180°C
Verser la soupe à deux centimètres du bord dans un plat ou une soupière allant au four
Placer les croûtons en surface afin de bien couvrir la soupe et recouvrir le pain avec le fromage râpé.
Placer les bols ou la soupière sur une plaque et enfourner.
Servir bouillant.

Recette extraite de

Saturday 15 January 2011

Tirer les rois

A group of students following a French course with Alliance Française de Bristol ate la galette last Thursday and here is our queen: la reine. She found la fève just as she started eating her portion.
To read more about  this French custom, read the previous post.
If anyone reading this blog has a recipe for la galette, please post it in the Comments.

If you wish to join in our forthcoming events, click here.

Wednesday 12 January 2011

Did you know that the French have a custom called tirer les rois?

On 6th January for epiphany ( l'épiphanie), the French eat a cake called une galette which is made of puff pastry with butter ( that's a must!!) with marzipan ( de la frangipane ) in the middle. A broad bean ( une fève) used to be hidden in it, now it is a small figure made of porcelain ( mind your teeth!!), usually a character from the crib, un santon but the word fève is still used
 It is an occasion to gather with family or friends and la galette is shared out between everyone present. The person who finds la fève (everybody asks: qui a la fève? ) is the king or queen of the day and he or she chooses their king or queen, therefore the expression: tirer les rois ( picking out the kings). La galette is sold with a crown ( une couronne ) so the king or queen of the day puts it on. It is a moment relished by children and funnily enough, the youngest child usually finds la fève and proudly wears the crown!

Our French tutors usually share une galette with students taking French tuition.
You can look at some photos on our website

Monday 3 January 2011

Did you know that the French do not send Christmas cards but New Year cards?

The French custom is to send New Year cards ( cartes de vœux) up to the last day in January. A typical phrase is: Meilleurs vœux pour une bonne et heureuse année ( best wishes for a happy New Year). This is also what people say to each other at midnight ( minuit) on New Year's Eve ( le réveillon du jour de l'An ou le réveillon de la St Sylvestre). Every day of the year has a saint and Sylvestre has his saint's day on the 31st, this is why December 31st is often referred to as:  la St Sylvestre.
To all of you reading this blog:
Bonne et heureuse année 2011!
Why not join our students already taking French lessons with Alliance Française de Bristol or Bath as a New Year resolution? For more info: