Monday, May 27, 2013

Just a weekend in Provence

This was supposed to be posted 10 days ago but then disaster struck: my computer went belly up, I had to get a new one, have all data transferred etc. etc. etc.....
The weekend before last was the weekend of  "La Transhumance" in Jonquières, a village not far from Vaison la Romaine. This time we missed the sheep because it was raining in the morning when they were guided to their summer pastures but when the sun came out we at least got to see the wonderful display of old crafts the villagers had put together.

learning to wash like granny used to

 hard work but fun, too

 spinning wool one way

 and spinning wool with a different tool

 basket weaving

this turkey and

 geese got to come to the fête, too

 Provence delicacies

 a display of "Santons" for the Christmas nativity scene

traditional Provence costume

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Secret about Calories

As found on Twitter (WhattheFork LLC) - just couldn't resist sharing!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Yotam Ottolenghi's Savoury Ricotta Cheesecake

You probably know by now that I am a big fan of Yotam Ottolenghi's cuisine. Not only are his cookbooks beautiful but his recipes work. And that means a lot to me. Just this weekend I have been ranting (again) about a sloppily edited recipe that just didn't turn out the way it should - what a waste of time and ingredients! So when by browsing online recipes I found this one from Ottolenghi's column in the British newspaper The Guardian, I checked the list of ingredients, found I was well equipped and got started. And although it is a bit labor intensive it is so worth the effort! Served with a little salad on the side this makes for an elegant starter or a light and very delicious lunch. Try it, you will like it!
blind baking the tart shell
very gently frying onions and garlic
blending sundried tomatoes, garlic and thyme...
 ...into this wonderful paste that I'd eat just as well on its own
 Key ingredient: Ricotta
Ottolenghi's Ricotta Cheesecake in all its glory

 Looks just like Yotam's!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Pink Floyd Revisited

There is nothing better than to be invited to a Provençal "Apéritif Dînatoire" - a long, informal, lazy and at the end often rather hazy lunch involving numerous plates of different delicacies, wine and most important "convivialité" - a warm, generous, familiar get-together among friends. Yesterday we had the honor to be invited to our friends and new neighbours Eric and Nana's house. Owners of the fabulous "L'Epicurien" restaurant in Crestet, a neighbouring village of Vaison, Eric and Nana work so much they do not have much time for socializing so we knew it was a special honor to be invited to their house. And of course we also knew we were in for a treat, because not only do our friends serve great food at their restaurant where they have a chef - they are also great chefs themselves!

We got spoiled with a delicious terrine
loads of other yummy dishes and

a leek tart of which I just have to have the recipe!!!
And then we were in for a real surprise:
Nana presented what turned out not to be just another bottle of Rosé,
but "Pink Floyd" the first vintage of
 Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's Provençal Rosé wine
Only available for sale in France the 6000 bottles of the 2012 vintage sold out the first day (you can now find it on Ebay). The Jolie-Pitts claim to be "intimately involved" in the production of the wine they produced in collaboration with Marc Perrin, the owner of Chateau de Beaucastel in prestigious Chateauneuf du Pape. And the verdict? It is a really nice rosé wine, but so are many other Provençal Rosé wines for which you pay a fraction of what "Pink Floyd" is now being hawked for.
Restaurant L'Epicurien
Quartier Glacière
84110 Crestet