mardi 30 octobre 2012

Soirée Halloween

In what has now become a tradition, AEU-YC and CEPA held their annual Halloween Party on Friday 26 October. All contacts were invited and flyers and info sent out to both American programs in Strasbourg and our usual partner universities (UDS: LEA, English, Law, IEP, EMS). The event was organized and coordinated by CEPA personnel, AEU-YC volunteers and a medley of students. Special thanks to Georgian College (Canada) hospitality students for the buffet, as well as the students from West Viriginia, Georgia and Strasbourg for the amazing decoration that set the tone for a gruesome party.The costumes were fabulous as we will show as soon as we collect pictures.(Anyone who would like to send in pictures or a comment about the evening please contact the email address listed on this blog. ) Looking forward to many more cross-cultural events to come, Petra Christov

lundi 29 octobre 2012


Avants- premières (gratuites) d'un film sur l'Alsace au cinéma UGC STRASBOURG le 6 et 9 novembre. (Ce film est  également programmé pour une diffusion sur FR3 ALSACE les samedis 3, 10 et 17 novembre 2012 à 17h30.)

vendredi 15 juin 2012

Summer recipes for adults and kids

In France there is a lot of talk about cupcakes. Often, however, after speaking with North Americans, our friends realize most of the cupcakes actually available around town don't correspond to what you would get in North America or the UK.

I myself have never been much of a cupcake fan as I come from a very Eurocentric environment in my hometown back in the US and we spend a lot of our time laughing at the people in Georgetown, Washington DC, who line up all the way out of the shop itself and up 33rd Street for a block or more, so patiently, religiously almost, for that famous cupcake. Yes, the holy place in Georgetown is on the corner of 33rd and M Street Georgetown Cupcake.
(Of course there are many places where you can get cupcakes, but there is always only one place that is the place. In DC things don't change that fast, but I am guessing that in NY the place is never the same place.)

I admit, I have never had one of those Georgetown Cupcake cupcakes, but the story goes that two women opened a teeny tiny itsy bitsy shop on 33rd street a couple of years back and became so famous they opened a big corner shop on 33rd and M. I don't know where they are now- in the pictures they are working very hard in the kitchen and I have heard they serve the customers themselves - this is all somewhat of a myth to me - but their success makes me want to picture them on a beach somewhere : ) Ok. So although I am no connoisseur in the art of cupcakes, I do know what a cupcake is not. And it is not what you get around here. The main problem is that the dough should not be a genoise and the topping is not some kind of butter fluff but has a very specific consistency and feel.

Now, I am put on the spot by a group of super smart 6th graders who won't let anything go by. As we bet on the existence or not of a French word: "timoré"- they claimed the word didn't exist and I assured them it did and meant "fearful" the bet was who would make cakes or rather as one student- Claire insisted: cupcakes!!!! So, after checking up the word in the dictionary, the kids found that Ms Christov was right, although she is American, but it meant "shy" according to the available resources and not "fearful". An arbiter was appointed who came to the conclusion that there was a tie. Both myself and the student in question have to make cupcakes for Monday, June 18th. Haha, they sure got their way. And now I have just finished doing my homework and have found what looks to me just the right thing: Beach and Shark cupcakes!!!!!

I have not made them yet but will post the recipe below (it is Martha Stewart's recipe that I copied from the link) and link for anyone who wants to test this recipe and give feedback on their impressions. You will see that the Shark and Beach cupcakes are actually basic vanilla or chocolate cupcakes with a twist.

Happy baking,

Petra Christov

  1. Shark and Beach Cupcake 
    Martha Stewart
    Happy times with kids call for cheerful cupcakes. Easier to serve than cake, cupcakes require no slicing, no plates, and no forks -- and every child gets her fair share of icing.
    The designs on this page start as Chocolate Cupcakes or Vanilla Cupcakes iced with Swiss Meringue Buttercream -- perfect for spreading in thin layers or sculpting into thick mounds (and licking from the bowl).
    The cupcakes can be baked a week ahead and frozen, but decorate them no more than a day before serving. Set up an assembly line, and put kids in charge of affixing candy eyes, gumdrop cheeks, and other trimmings. Pack the cupcakes in a shallow plastic container, and stuff crumpled waxed paper in between. Then dole them out and watch kids marvel for a second before opening wide!
    In June, look out for blue paper fins slicing through icing waves. Some might prefer a sandy beach, so stand a drink parasol in a dune of icing dipped in finely ground graham-cracker crumbs.
    Vanilla Cupcakes
    Makes 24
    1. 3 cups all-purpose flour
    2. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    3. 3/4 teaspoon salt
    4. 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature (1 1/2 sticks)
    5. 1 1/2 cups sugar
    6. 4 large eggs
    7. 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    8. 1 1/4 cups milk
    1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pan with paper liners; set aside. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. In another mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until incorporated and scraping down sides of bowl, beat in vanilla.
    2. Add flour mixture and milk alternately, beginning and ending with flour. Scrape the sides and bottom of bowl to assure the batter is thoroughly mixed. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling papers about 2/3 full. Bake on the center rack of the oven until tops spring back to touch, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
    Topping: Swiss Meringue Buttercream for Cupcakes
    Makes about 9 cups, enough for about 28 cupcakes
    1. 2 1/2 cups sugar
    2. 10 large egg whites
    3. 4 cups (8 sticks or 2 pounds) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
    4. 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    1. Place sugar and egg whites in the heat-proof bowl of an electric mixer. Set bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, and whisk until sugar has dissolved and egg whites are hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. Test by rubbing the mixture between your fingers; it should feel completely smooth.
    2. Transfer bowl to mixer stand. Using the whisk attachment, beat on high speed until mixture has cooled completely and formed stiff and glossy peaks, about 10 minutes.
    3. Add the butter, one piece at a time, and beat until incorporated after each addition. Don't worry if the buttercream appears curdled after all the butter has been added; it will become smooth again with continued beating. Add vanilla, and beat just until combined.
    4. Switch to the paddle attachment, and beat on the lowest speed to eliminate any air pockets, about 5 minutes. If using buttercream within several hours, cover bowl with plastic wrap, and set aside at room temperature in a cool environment. Or transfer to an airtight container, and store in the refrigerator, up to 3 days. Before using, bring buttercream to room temperature, and beat on the lowest speed with the paddle attachment until smooth, about 5 minutes.

dimanche 27 mai 2012


I'm looking for a baby-sitter for my 2 boys who are 5 1/2 and 10 years old. They go to the International School in Strasbourg. The job is after school from 4:30 or 5:00PM to 6:30 or 7:00PM at our house in Illkirch. And maybe on school holidays...Position filled

dimanche 13 mai 2012

French Pianist lives with wolves in New York state

Soirée Dansante

la musique de l'Amérique, du Nord au Sud
Samedi 19 mai 2012 à 20 Heures
Hôtel Holiday Inn 20 Place de Bordeaux 67000 STRASBOURG
L’excellent groupe MOVING animera cette soirée musicale, en vous proposant différents styles de musique (Jazz, Latin, Rock & roll, madison, western...)
Si vous aimez danser ou simplement passer un bon moment, ne manquez pas cette soirée qui se déroulera dans le cadre prestigieux du Holiday Inn et qui promet d’être aussi festive que la précédente.

Prix d’entrée, incluant un repas américain - Hamburger, Chips et Coleslaw, Apple pie (boissons non comprises) : 22 € membre de l’Association Alsace Etats-Unis ou Etudiant

To register, please respond by email ASAP