Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Here..there..and everywhere...~ Violets~ Apple Blossoms~Lilacs~

Max goes to French school so forgive the spelling..:)
I guess he figured he or she was English;)

"I wonder how you slip under my pillow~just like that"

Oh Max..I love that sentence.
Her response..below..

Oh to be a little again and feel so special and loved ..

Making violet bouquets♥
Lilac bouquets
LOTV bouquets.

May..and this is the last day..it flew by..Does March fly by?

Admiring every single apple tree that bloomed and is still blooming~~

I started the second veggie patch..

it will be THE garlic patch ..

but right now my garlic is growing in two other gardens..

so this year..some lettuce..radishes .. beets ,basil,cherry tomatoes..all will grow  in Mathilde's garden.

I asked Jacques to make an x~form for me to make Mathilde..so she could frighten the squirrels away:)  

In this garden..until garlic is the only thing planted ..

Mathilde is sporting a long skirt I have not worn in years..a jean shirt that has seen way better days..but I loved it so much I wore it out..and a gardening hat..she has to be protected from the sun~

In the kitchen..

Sometimes you do not need to use the KA..some recipes are small..to make cute small things..so then you bring out the hand mixer..
I had ..have one..that even on the lowest speed..in a deep bowl..it's dangerous..it beats so fast ingredients fly out..
My daughter spotted this very cheap one but found it so cute and vintagey..I asked the salesperson if we could plug it in..at last..something that's cute and not a weapon:)

For 9 tarts..I only needed 1 egg white..my KA can't beat just one egg white..the depth I think..
Mamina's recipe says it makes 6..for these I used my mini silicone mold..and the cavities are smaller than on the metal ones..so the recipe made 9.
It's a good little crust..Mamina filled hers w/ mascarpone and decorated w/ strawberries..I had some lemon curd I wanted to use..so I made mini meringue pies/tarts..
so cute. 
Then Jacques isn't facing a large lemon meringue pie all week;)
I baked mine ap 20 minutes..not the 7-8 that Mamina did because I was fully baking mine..she re~inserts hers into the oven once filled.There was no need for me to do that..
It's a versatile little recipe..yum yum..

La Recette~ Courtesy of Mamina.

6o grams softened butter
25grams icing sugar
a tiny pinch of fleur de sel
1/4 tsp of vanilla powder
10 grams egg white
65 grams of flour..I may have put 70;)

Cream the butter ,add icing sugar and blend..,add salt,vanilla powder and egg white..add flour.
Put a little ball of dough in each mini muffin tin and use a moistened finger to pat the dough evenly bottom and sides..(I used my wood lemon juicer..floured).
Bake in a pre-heated 350 F oven for ap 20 minutes..keep an eye on them.
If you are going to fill w/ a cheese filling that you bake..bake 7-8 minutes..fill..then bake till set.
Let cool and remove from mold.
Fill w/ lemon curd..top w/ meringue..I used my small crème brulée blow torch to color the meringue.

Enjoy..these would be nice under an apple tree w/ a nice glass of ice tea~
So beautiful this past week!

The date squares are Ricardo's this time..if you make..mine took under 30 minutes to be fully baked..so keep an eye on them instead of setting the timer for 55 minutes and walking away~

Thought I would add my top shelf/left in my fridge..my fave spot..

Son-in-law..s... eggs..crème fraiche..my favorite petits pots yogurts..and fave petit pot beurre..
this company has created a little gold mine I think..it has been around for a long long time..but recently all these petits pots  have appeared in perfectly pretty packaging..good for them.
Finding more lids led me to a Metro..and now I have at least 12 more lids pour mes petits pots:)♥
I had bought 12 through someone previously..

I see a collection happening..
the yogurts I have mentioned before..I love the consistency..the butter?
They have unsalted and salted..I love salt..
It is so good! Fleur de sel salty:)

They have many goat's milk products etc..
If you can get your hands on these products..well they have my 100% seal of approval~

I use a Ball jar from my friend  Linda to keep the mayo..turquoise also:)Turquoise..love it in a kitchen.♥

May~ June..busy busy in the gardens..
Front and back gardens need tutoring..tutelage..TLC..
The Alliums are lovely ...little exclamation marks in front and back..the garlic..a different allium..look!
Alain brought manure..like fresh flowers to me:)
Forgive the peony hoops..but that bed needs them..
Centaurea  Montana (perennial cornflower)is at it's best..
Iris starting to POP♥
I love our gardens.Some are not aging well at all..but still I love them...and I feel Alain's manutre will help a lot.

I enjoy being  able to nurture things and watch them grow.

Enjoy this beautiful time of the year~
In a garden..on a terrasse..w/ just a flower box or a few pots..or larger gardens..take time to notice everything..it's a powerful optimism booster....free.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Le Muguet~Les Lilas..et les Pissenlits~

White white white

White white white..
I am not complaining..
these are white fragrance days..
LOTV..Lilacs..White crabapples~
and some sunshine yellow..all over the place..

You know what they say..when life hands you lemons..make lemonade..well when life hands you dandelions..drink dandelion tea.
Definitely not my fave..but good for us..
a sweet robin had started a nest in my clematis by the new potager..I found the beginnings on the ground..fear not..another is started..but I kept the one I found on the ground..the intricacy of their adroit workmanship is extraordinary.
It's a lovely time of year to be gathering small bouquets of flowers to set in different rooms..the scent of LOTV is a favorite of mine♥
Oli's auntie and uncle's gorgeous dog♥
I find it so hard to fathom how phones can take such great pics..my daughter took that pic with her phone!~No editing..
Granted..lovely subjects~ :)

So..it's summer here..weather in the 80's and sunny..since last week!!No rain ..the most different May I have seen...

Sunday, May 22, 2016


I am still under the spell of fresh greens and new pinks..
My tulips opened indoors much to my happiness.
So not all was lost.
The flowering almond continues to dazzle and attract the bees..
Our crabapples are going to EXPLODE this week...they are half bloomed!
The bleeding hearts are bleeding♥
The Forget- Me- Nots ..are unforgettable..
..the ferns continue to unfurl..day by day by day.

Our litle town is dotted in bubble gum pink..everywhere..so so gorgeous..
The crabapples..huge bouquets  of them everywhere making everywhere you look a picture from a beautiful travel book.

This time of year..
we eat very simply..

that lovely pasta /tomato dish ..you know we place a bowl in the sun w/ tomatoes and EVOO and garlic..and basil and kalamatas or capers..and let everything ,macerate all day.....then simply add cooked pasta and top w/ more basil and cheese♥

Or ..what I love to do..is take some leftover rotisserie chicken and make what my mom made for me..

except differently..

she would use a can of cream of mushroom and a can of cream of chicken..it was the thing in the 50's and early 60's..sometimes..asparagus..and add chicken and peas..

I do basically the same thing..  but no cans... sauté mushrooms and French shallots... some thyme..peas..some red or orange pepper and remove..add butter..and flour and broth..and some cream..

add the chicken..and spoon into and over and all around..

and there you have Chicken a la King:)

So easy on garden days..

OK..so I must have hard gardened 3 straight hours Friday..
By 5 PM..I was done.:)

Things change in a mere 16 years..!

Meanwhile..our Brocante opened the weekend  before last..but my first visit was this past  Saturday.
I will always love this place..I have been going for 40 years I guess..not quite sure..

So many vendors..aisles and aisles and barns full..! Barnfulls? Full barns?
I would need to spend a day uploading pics..but my visits give you an idea..une petite idée..of what it is like.
I bought nothing..was looking for an inkwell..they had many but not what I was looking for.

You can see how many temptations there are..

One lady has gorgeous linen pinafores..short.. to wear over things..another had at least 3 things I loved..cotton/linen..
very boho..♥

One gentleman breaks my heart..he is British..and has a very old car..his hands tremble..(I am very observant of these things..) and he  smokes a lot..he has beautiful items..this week in particular..he had Toby mugs..quite a selection..someone bought 3..I asked him for an inkwell  ..he didn't have..I bought that tea strainer/sifter from him last year..his accent is charming..but there are so many stories in his eyes..I am hoping he has a family that cares..and that he is not alone in the world..
If he was to read this he would probably think I was nuts..
he's probably happy...healthy and wealthy:) 
We get feelings though don't we?

And  last but not least my little "artistes",Max..was out plein air painting at his home♥..his home:)  and Oli ..sitting on the porch:)..

I picked up the box on Varage Sale..so glad they use it.


I loved Saturday..first green tea and Riviera yogurt,a muffin..then the brocante..then,we all went for dinner at Mylène and Alain's and Noah's and Giuliana and Adamo's...too much food..(as if someone was forcing me.;) )..a fire at dusk..with Alain playing guitar..singing..Giu also.. our girls..and Adamo with us..just relaxing and toasting marshmallows..
The full moon..all 4 Littles running into Noahs' room coming out in Noah's pyjamas..:)
Hard to explain perfection.
Grateful♥For yesterday.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Soooo Good! And Sooo Bad~Happy looong weekend to all!

Coffee Almond Crunch Cake~

Sooo Good~
I cannot believe it's been around since at least 2008~This recipe I mean~

Oh Yum.

By the time I got it out of the oven..and it was cool enough to dust and decorate with wild violets..the clouds had come in..thunder clapped..the skies were black and it started to pour.
Overexposed from ..well from my fault.

So please forgive the pics of an aboslutely delicious cake..
It's  a Gordon Ramsay cake and believe me..it is addictive..super easy to make..you should enjoy coffee because you certainly can taste it..served warmish ..wowsers.
Really..try it and tell me:)
I popped half over to our daughter across the street and she printed up the recipe right away..that's how good it is..super moist meets super crunch.
I made mine in a 9 inch sprigform and had to bake a tad longer.

Sooo bad~
My tulips on the other hand are not a raging success:(
Only about 6 Parrots developed buds..and the stinking squirrels bit the heads off..so as I walked that area..all I saw were the tops w/ stems chopped off..one was nibbled on..the rest not.I guess the glutton decided it was not in his top 5 food choices and left the rest to rot there.
That's why I have those squirrels..they do have cute faces..but I know their nature.Hoodlums.
So I gathered the tips and some FMNs and wrapped them..
I didn't wait all winter to throw them away..so I played with them..and now they are in a vase on my windowsill and I hope they will open.
Hope I didn't offend all the squirrel lovers.

Went to a fave garden centre for certain things..been going for over 35 years I am certain..I have a couple of favorite nurseries..only one is far..Jasmine..the others are perfectly doable for me..who stopped driving far..a few years back.

The owners and staff are so friendly,helpful and knowledgeable.
I picked up some herbs..a mature Cobea Scandens,a mature Morning Glory..some Lantana..Pansies..and that trailing blue plant I love...Scaevola Blue Lagoon.
Still need impatines..oh and I got a big rhubarb plant..I changed mine of place and we cannot find it..I have surmised it hated the move.
So an orphan came home with me.

And quite a few others today~

Have a beautiful weekend~:)
It's a long one here ..