Saturday, October 16, 2010

So, the 2010 Paris week is over. Two dear friends came over to help me top off the week. Our menu tonight was:
Biftek Sauté Béarnaise
Gratin Jurassien
Navets à L’Étuviée
Pain et Buerre
Panna Cotta
Sauce aux Cerises

And here's the dessert, as promised:

And I'm so tired and full I can't move. Maybe I'll just sleep in my chair downstairs tonight....zzzz

Friday, October 15, 2010

Tonight, my current favorite: Ratatouille! With some plain old biscuits and a little bit of cheese grated on top. Easy and delicious!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Since I've got French class tonight, I made an easy omelette and just heated up the remaining baguette in the microwave. Tomorrow night! The ratatouille!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

OK, I have run out of energy before I’ve run out of Paris Week. I’m too pooped to cook ratatouille tonight, or even crêpes. I opened a can of Le Manwich and cooked a pound of le hamburger and I’m making Le Goofing Off tonight. No photo. Too fatiguée even to study any French.

Bah. It’s not good getting old.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I was going to cook ratatouille tonight but the day got away from me. I did my raw crudités, cheeses, and baguette. I had smoked gouda, emanteller, cheddar, and bleu cheeses. Green onion, carrot sticks, whole almonds, raw green beans, a little tomato, and little chunks of turnip. Hot baguette right out of the oven and butter, mm mm. I also have some Paul Newman's Own salad dressing of some kind, to dip things in. See, I've figured out, the thing is about French cooking is that everyday isn't anything fancy. It's just that they have more variety and do more interesting things with them. It can be very simple. Once again, my little ring-holder kitty approved:

Monday, October 11, 2010

So today launches my third annual Paris Week. I make myself simple French dinners all week, to recapture a little of that wonderful week I spent in the City of Light in October 2007. THIS time I'm going to make more of an effort to take pictures of my creations.

Tonight it was something similar to Filet de sole bonne femme - from my memory of the recipe I followed in about 1972 from that era's Betty Crocker cookbook. AFTER making and eating it, I looked in my Julia Child cookbook and online to see if there is actually such a recipe - there are apparently lots. And it turns out I cannot call it "Filet de sole bonne femme" because I forgot to put mushrooms in it. *slump* Oh well, it had real butter, Reisling wine, chopped green onions, a little bit of rosemary and thyme, and did I mention the Reisling wine? That's French enough for me. My version is a lot easier than the other ones I found. It was good, too. I had steamed Brussels sprouts and some bread-machine-made bread & butter. My ring-holder kitty approved:

This week of opulent self-indulgence culminates with a splendid dinner to which I invite two or three of my dearest friends. (They're the only ones I know will still talk to me if my dinner turns out awful.) I have to write the invitations tonight and get them in the mail. Last year we played Milles Bournes after the dinner. I'm going to ask my invitees to make suggestions for this time. I've got the original French "Breathless" DVD, and "Paris, Je t'aime" we could watch... We'll see.

On tomorrow night's menu: Ratatouille and crusty French bread, with maybe some cheese sprinkled on it. Mmm-mmm, I love me some ratatouille!

Saturday, October 09, 2010

One year ago today I quit smoking. Yay!

I made myself a chocolate cake to celebrate. Probably not the greatest idea, but hey, it's something. I'll probably end up throwing most of it out.

Today my nephew came over and painted my back yard shed for me. The old color was not nice. That's all I'll say, since it's no longer visible. The new color was scientifically obtained by the paint store lady putting a chip of my house siding into her color-detecting gizmo and coming up with the recipe to make the same color. I also got white for the trim.

I painted a couple of sheets of plywood that I'd had them cut to fit the doorway of the shed; the old doors have rotted out at the bottom due to being dragged across wet grass, etc. I painted them in the garage and when they were dry, they didn't look like the same color as the house, so I hauled one out to compare it right up against the siding. The color was 100% perfect. My eye could not detect any difference. Amazing.

So today as my nephew was painting, it was looking pretty different also. It looks more yellow. Now that it's done, and it's had a few hours to dry, it still looks different. Maybe the south side of my house – the side I got the sample chip from – is lighter than the north side – the side facing the back yard – because the sun beats on the south side all the time and hardly at all on the north side. But I don't care because the new shed color is 1000% better than the old color, and it goes just fine with the north side of the house.

This has taken a HUGE burden off my shoulders. This is a biggie. Thank you SO much, nephew! You're the BEST.