A "cafe" in France designates two things: a coffee (drink) and a small place to have drinks (including coffee) and sometimes snacks or light meals. Small villages cafes welcome a lot of people who usually don't just enjoy a small cup of coffee! Red or white wine, commonly referred to as "canon de rouge" for red wine, or "canon de blanc" for white wine, along with Pastis, are usually their best friend. I don't want to pigeonhole but I come from a small village and I was raised in my grandmother's cafe; You see patterns after a while.
Monday, July 28, 2008
Thursday, July 24, 2008
I live in Texas, so Tex-Mex cuisine, as might be expected, is very popular here. There are countless numbers of restaurants and taco stands all over Austin; so many that when I first moved here, I grew tired of eating out. I was not fond of salsa, tortilla chips nor any spicy flavor. Proof that one can get used to anything, I now enjoy Tex Mex a lot and I even add salsa and pico de gallo to my tacos and fajitas! Tacos and salsa, it seems, have become staples in American kitchens.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
"Monsieur Plus", that's how my mother refers to my father, alluding to his tendency to exaggerate and embellish things ("Monsieur Plus" translates to "Mister Plus"). Accounts of their weekend hike often turn into a heroic odyssey for example.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Here's a dessert that will become a classic. It's such an easy recipe, believe me! It would be really hard to mess it up. Make this raspberry tiramisu a day ahead and serve it cold, with a clairette de Die , an Asti Spumante or even a Muscat like a Beaumes de Venise. I really enjoy clairette for its refreshing and sparkling taste. Its unique sweetness comes from the muscat grapes. It's like drinking sunshine!
Monday, July 14, 2008
Today was France's national day. In the United States, it's commonly known as Bastille Day. In France, we refer to it as "la Fete Nationale" or "le 14 juillet". There's noting much different in the way we celebrate. There's grilling involved, maybe picnics and always fireworks bien sur!!
We found a spot under a tree, where we settled ourselves down, picnic style. The food was provided so all we needed to do was walk to the tables and choose between merguez or a pate sandwiches, croque-monsieurs, cheese plates - among other things.
My heart was set on the merguez sandwich, a spicy sausage originally from Northern Africa but adopted by the French. It's so much part of our culture now! We sometimes eat it as a sandwich, in a fresh crispy baguette, along with French mustard. Yum!!
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Monday, July 7, 2008
My grandparents have grown their own vegetables their whole life. Salads, potatoes, leeks, carrots, radishes, turnips, pumpkins. The list goes on and on. I feel so privileged to have been able to take advantage of their harvest. There simply isn't any comparison between a green salad fresh from the garden and a store bought one. I am lucky enough though, to have a great supermarket who sells wonderful fresh products right next to where we live here in Austin.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Happy 4th of July everyone! This year is my second year as an American citizen to celebrate Independence Day. Juan's parents and his brother are coming to Austin. We hope to catch a glimpse of the fireworks - somehow (we're still trying to decide on which strategic spot we should position ourselves).