I high-tailed it out of the city with my furry little friend on a rainy - make that stormy - Christmas Eve morning. We call it Le Veille de Noël in these parts. We took the opportunity to dry off in the warmth of the train during the leisurely three-hour ride through a gray Provençal landscape. Bodhi gets the pup-in-a-bag discount of a 5€ fare. Cool, non? After his initial terror (first train ride jitters...poor thing) subsided, he quite enjoyed it.
Yes, Christmas was spent with special friends in the country. Of course, this is the friend who was my model as I contemplated moving to France. From a very cozy kitchen, she creates one fabulous dish after another. A veritable kitchen goddess, she is. So it will come as no surprise that we spent the better part of our days together eating wonderful fare, drinking wonderful wines and laughing as we reminisced about my first Christmas spent with them - before I had really gotten the hang of this language. It's hilarious looking back. The polite smile in response to the questions coming at me was quickly replaced by a deer-in-headlights look as I realized I was in way over my head. How things have changed. I spent both days rattling away in French - and cracking a few jokes, at that!
After a soggy eve, Noël in Grignan was lovely. The sun made a welcomed appearance and decided to stay for the day. All the little rues, decked out in winter charm, sparkled even more as a result...
...and the meals prepared to celebrate each day were as deliciously French as it gets.
This particular soup, hiding coyly beneath its stylish puff pastry cap, will give you something to look forward to next week when I return with the recipe to break the suspense...and the hiatus chez La Fourchette.
I hope you spent your day with loved ones, enjoying being together. And I hope you made something tasty part of your day. It just doesn't get better than that!
p.s. merci, mes chèrs amis!