France’s Loire Valley is home to hundreds of châteax (plural for château…yeah, it’s much easier to just add an s like in English, but them’s the rules here). These are, in general, amazingly beautiful buildings that range from small castle-like homes built by lesser lords when kings lived in the valley to massive, grand palaces.… Continue reading Château? Gesundheit!
A cup of hot mulled wine in your hand as you weave through the quaint wooden cabins, deciding which cute little grandma makes the best Bavarian pretzel or bredele, the traditional Alsacian Advent cakes…it’s a tough day, no? Here’s a little oompa band to get you in the mood. Hum this tune as you battle… Continue reading Oompa band at Christmas market
While in Strasbourg, France, this weekend (more about this beautiful city later) I went to Germany. Basically, you have to (if you haven’t been to Germany before): You can throw a meringue across the river…it’s that close. It was only a few hours, but they were productive. We went to the Woolworth (a throw-back, for… Continue reading Smoking & Flammeküeche
Back in the day, when I catered for a very talented chef in Stamford, I was known to [ahem] test for freshness his delicious and crispy fried onion strings while working a gig. Here in France, I have found the next best thing, given that I don’t like the burning sensation that deep-frying onions leaves… Continue reading Food: USA-like convenience
Regular readers know I took a couple of cooking classes offered by the language insitute where I’m studying. I actually made this macaron cookie with vanilla filling! It was extremely delicious. The cookie part manages to be both crispy on the outside and edges (because after you pipe it out of the bag onto the… Continue reading Macarons: Popular in Paris, but a Loire Valley speciality
Tonight’s cheese course: my local favorite, a Saint-Maure chèvre, paired with a purple fig and walnut jam and, of course (bien sûr!) a baguette. (Trust me, it tasted plate-lickin’ good, despite my mediocre picture.) There’s a sticker on the jam jar noting that it’s made to accompany not just any cheese, but “les fromages de… Continue reading Tonight’s cheese course
Learning French is proving difficult for me.I’m sure I sound about as fluent to the French as Sarah Palin sounds to Americans. (Actually, I hope I’m doing better than she is, also too.)But while it may be hard, it’s a beautiful language, and when I get it right, it sounds simply lyrical. I could sit… Continue reading Language: Can you say poubelle?
I hate to break it to you on the big day, but in case you haven’t seen the New York Times in the past few days, it’s time to knock the Pilgrims off their high horse and give the French Huguenots their due for discovering [not discovering…EDIT: settling] America. (My Presbyterian mother will be happy… Continue reading Thanksgiving & the French
Look left, please. You’ve just seen the salad dressing section, in its entirety, of the largest grocery store I’ve ever been in. (Think five times as large as the largest Stop N Shop in Fairfield County.) And this is it for the salad dressings. (Their cookie section? A full aisle, both sides. And that doesn’t… Continue reading Salad dressing: a whole post dedicated to the topic
a mixed green salad with rounds slices of warm goat cheese (chèvre) covered in honey and a drizzle of fig sauce hare stew (yes, the thing related to a rabbit only bigger and, unfortunately, usually uglier) macarons (chocolate, pistachio, raspberry, violet, and rose—not kidding) a baguette sandwich with salami, camembert cheese, and cornichons (little gherkin… Continue reading Food journal: recent memories