Going out to celebrate new year’s eve has never been my thing. Even when I lived in the US, I always preferred to spend a quiet evening at home watching the ball drop with Dick Clark. Even here in Paris, a crowd of 300k people on the Champs-Elysées doesn’t appeal to me either. For me, the ideal way to ring in the new year is by preparing and feasting on a multi-course meal at home with my husband. Le réveillon, or new year’s eve dinner, is actually something that I look forward to with much anticipation all year long.
I hope that y’all had a happy and festive holiday full of warmth and delicious food! The holidays crept up on me so quickly this year that I hardly had any time to get into the holiday spirit. The mister and I have been so consumed by renovating our home that planning our réveillon de Noël, or Christmas eve dinner, completely escaped us this year. Instead of putting together an elaborate dinner, we opted to spend a low-key evening at my in-laws. Though it was a quiet evening, our réveillon included traditional holiday goodies, such as foie gras and lobster. Though not so acceptable to eat in the US, I still look forward to indulging in the rich, creaminess of foie gras each and every holiday season. Here in France, a holiday meal just would not be complete without it.
My poor blog fell to the wayside and started collecting quite a bit of dust while we were re-doing our kitchen. The renovations had taken much longer than I had anticipated because the mister did all of the handy work himself, including the electricity, plumbing, flooring, painting, and installing the new cabinets. With a regular 9-5, however, his progress had been rather slow, particularly because noise ordinances here in France prohibit any sort of construction that causes excessive noise that could be a nuisance to neighbors on Sundays and after 7:30 pm on weekdays.
I’m so sorry to have left y’all hanging for so long! In the midst of our kitchen renovations (our apartment is still a disaster zone, by the way, because my husband decided to embark on another renovation project in my absence-the whole apartment this time!), it was pretty difficult to prepare anything worth salivating over. And, immediately after finishing our kitchen, I took a much needed two week trip back to California to visit my friends and family after not seeing them for over 2 years!! I can’t even begin to tell y’all how thrilled I was to be back on US soil again where everything is familiar to me and to finally get to celebrate Thanksgiving again with everyone back home. Obviously, the French don’t celebrate this hedonistic food fest and my husband isn’t the biggest fan of turkey, so it’s been a good three years since I’ve had a real Thanksgiving meal! Though, after going home this time, I feel a bit inspired to start my own Thanksgiving tradition for when I can’t make it back to the US so I can have a little piece of home here in France.
My dear readers, I haven’t abandoned you and I promise that I will start posting again shortly! My kitchen is still under construction so I haven’t been able to cook anything other than really simple dishes with our hotplate. But, the kitchen is almost done and I can’t wait to show ya’ll how it turned out – stay tuned!
Mes chers lecteurs, je vous promets que je reviendrai bientôt! Je m’excuse de la longue attente depuis mon dernier post. Ma cuisine est toujours en travaux donc je pouvais rien cuisiner à part des plats super simples les dernières semaines. Mais, elle est presque terminée et j’ai hâte de vous la montrer. Restez connecté et à bientôt!
When it comes to fabricating exquisitely, delectable pastries that would delight any tastebuds, the French without a doubt take the cake. With their innovative techniques and boundless creativity, they have elevated the craft of making pastries to a level that is unrivaled by none. In France, the profession has roots that extend as far back as the Middle Ages, so it’s no wonder that the exceptionally refined French culinary arts is renowned worldwide. Careers in pastries generally start early, where future pastry chefs enroll in professional programs as young as 14 years of age, so most will already have over a decade of experience under their belts by the time they are in their 20s. On top of that, there are numerous opporunties to exhibit their baking prowess at national and international pastry competitions, such as the World Pastry Cup, where the French have dominated year after year.
Sigh, gloomy, rainy days are already upon us again. Just last week, we were doused with a healthy dose of sunshine, with temperatures reaching as high as 33°C. This week, however, started with a downpour of incessant rain that lasted throughout the day. Already, I’ve had to pull out my trenchcoat to counter the brisk morning chill.
Like any other metropolitan city, Paris is densely populated with hordes of jostling people and the streets are lined with miles of concrete buildings, albeit much more aesthetically pleasing buildings. Yet, the city boasts a surprising number of parks and squares in each of the 20 districts, offering Parisians a nice respite from their tiny abodes. During warmer months, the frenchies flock in droves to these green spaces to picnic and bask in the warm rays of the sun.
It’s been a good minute since I’ve shared any Vietnamese recipes, and my rather nascent weekly series has been badly neglected lately. I do, however, have a recipe that I’ve been dying to share with you for months. Being a soup with dark-colored spices and veggies though, I had trouble capturing a decent photograph of the dish hence, no post. Thanks to these long summer days (which are already getting shorter by about 3 minutes everyday), it was still light out when we were getting ready to eat dinner the other day. I seized the opportunity and quickly snapped a couple of shots before inhaling the dish!
Making friends in France has not been an easy feat. Given that I didn’t know anyone in France, having my own friends and social interactions was essential for allaying my sense of isolation. But, I have yet to develop a friendship with a frenchie. Initially, I thought it was me, but other people have also recounted similar experiences.