Reading about Paris

I’m back again!  Even though I haven’t written it doesn’t mean that my French obsession has seized.  I just started to read, Paris My Sweet, by Amy Thomas. She also has a blog called, God, I Love Paris.  What French inspired book are you reading? Or have enjoyed reading?  



About Me

As I click away on French inspired blogs I find myself being interested in learning who the authors are.  I noticed that on my own “About” section I don’t have much written.  I didn’t think it really mattered.  Who wants to read about me?  But as I come across more and more blogs I would like to know a little something about the authors, a little morsel.

So my “About” goes something like this… I’m a born and raised New Yorker that knows the complexities of the MTA system (the bus and train system) and the ever-changing corner store that never quite makes it more than a couple of years at its location, except of course the neighborhood, GAP store.  Which I still detest!

Now I live in a faraway place called, New Jersey, but I still commute to NYC for work so I still consider myself a New Yorker (no offense to NJ).

I’m not French, which my sister repeatedly reminds me. But I’ve stumbled upon my own crazed French obsessed adventure. Which I love! Ultimately, just like my writing, reading, painting, cooking, etc, I love doing it good or bad it doesn’t matter. What matters is the joy I feel doing it!

Enjoy the blog

French Inspired Books

Since my fascination with everything French I’ve managed to grow my library with a little French section.  Yes, I’m going through a French stage obsession and I love it.

I’ve read Lunch in Paris and French Women Don’t Get Fat, both with wonderful stories and full of great recipes.  I read, Immovable Feast by John Baxter during the holiday season and it was very enjoyable.  I didn’t want to finish reading it.  John an Aussie marries a French woman and moves to Paris.  He prepares Christmas dinner with ‘Pascual’.  He tries to stuff Pascual in the stove but he doesn’t fit a little bending is needed.  Dinner, drinks, family. A feast!  Who would want to finish such a story?  Thankfully, he wrote another book, We’ll Always Have Paris.  I read the first few lines and it talks about having a ‘turning point’.  I want a turning point too.  I’m waiting patiently for that special something to change my life.  The rest of the book was good too.

I just finished reading Blackberry Wine by Joanne Harris.  It’s a fiction book about making changes and finding inspiration.

My next read will be A Year in Provence by Peter Mayes.

What French inspired book have you read?

My Evolving French Palate

It’s been a year since I read French Women Don’t Get Fat but the book remains close by, either on the kitchen counter or on my nightstand.  The book has colorful sticky notes either indication what champagne to drink or a delicious recipe.  If I didn’t mention it before the book has a bunch of wonderful recipes.  I’ve tried 2 of the recipes.  The first recipe I wrote about on my food blog so I’ll copy and paste that post here for you to enjoy J

I made Mireille Guilian’s French Baguettes (a previous post).  I’ve never baked from scratch. Every cake, cookie, brownie or muffin I’ve ever made has come in a cardboard box.  So this was my first bread making experience. The first ingredient I opened was the active dry yeast and I was not ready for the pungent smell that it had.  I was just hoping that the smell would not linger on my baguettes.  The process of mixing was attempted by my hand mixer.  The dough was becoming thick and the harder the mixer worked the harder the dough fought back, then the mixer popped like a light bulb and stopped working.  Next step, kneading.  Kneading is not as easy as it seems on cooking shows.  I wanted to take pictures of the process. Yeah Right!  It was so sticky I couldn’t get it off my fingers and I was becoming frustrated.  So, after kneading, the directions said to let it sit for an hour but for some reason I read, “Refrigerate” for an hour. Needless to say the dough rising process never happened but I tried to shape the dough into breads anyway.  I ended up making 4 different sized baguettes that looked more like calzones.

I’ve tried this recipe twice and both times the baguettes looked like calzones.  I’ll have to try it again and let the dough sit, stand or rest overnight.

The second recipe was Mushrooms.  Years ago the mention of the word, “mushrooms” would make unknown muscles on my face move to show my dislike for the fungus.  But now my palate has matured and I welcome mushrooms into my diet.  So to my delight this book had an easy and great tasting recipe for mushroom.  The recipe is called, “fricassee de champignons sauvages”.  Sounds fancy but this recipe is super easy.  The recipe has no measurements just put some mushrooms, chopped onions, parsley, lemon juice and olive oil together in a pan, cook and eat.  Easy, simple and delicious.