Just finished Picnic in Provence, another lovely food filled memoir by Elizabeth Bard, author of Lunch in Paris. Though I think I enjoyed her first book a bit more. Still, lots of good recipes are included, as well as village characters, stories, and her insights on life in France.
Bard now has a young son, and together with her husband, Gwendal, they pick up stakes and move from Paris apartment living to a country house in the South of France.....Sigh. I would do it in a heart beat. Even through adjusting to new neighbors, new cultural traditions, a new business enterprise and attempting to get along with in-laws, she maintains a positive, can do attitude. I don't think my own adjustment in a similar situation would be as good. For one thing, Bard is a much more outgoing, social individual, which helps in making new friends. I did wonder how much her mother-in-law would appreciate some of the honesty however.
My choice of recipe was based mostly on needing food to bring to a Christmas party. I liked that she said of this dish, it's "the only thing I can think of that I'd want to eat before Thanksgiving dinner. That said, it would also make a lovely salad served with dinner itself." A winter salad, in reds and greens - perfect for a Christmas party. She only dressed it with a bit of olive oil and some salt. I did that, but for extra flavor, I decided to bring along a sesame tahini dressing, also from her book, with a few changes. Though I didn't toss the salad with it, to keep from muddying the colors.
Wonderful tastes as well as a bright and crunchy contrast to lots of heavy food. Have you ever attended a Hawaiian style potluck party? If so, you'll get the idea.
Winter Saladfrom Picnic in Provence by Elizabeth Bard
1 lb. green cabbage or Chinese cabbage (half of 1 small cabbage)
10 oz. (about 4) organic carrots
10 oz. (about 2) medium organic red beets (raw!)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 good pinches coarse sea salt, to taste
2 sprigs parsley for garnish
In a food processor or by hand, grate all the vegetables. Store in an airtight container. If making in advance, keep the beets separate from the carrots and cabbage until the last minute. Just before serving, toss the vegetables together with olive oil and salt. Note: I did this and just served the tahini dressing separately.
Tahini DressingAdapted from Elizabeth Bard's recipe in Picnic in Provence
1/4 cup / 60 ml sesame tahini
1 1/4 cups whole milk yogurt or kefir
1/4 cup/ 60 ml fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, ground black pepper to taste
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
Combine tahini and lemon juice with garlic until smooth in blender or food processor. Add yogurt, salt and pepper, blend to combine. Add water if needed for desired consistency.
I'll share all the goodness with Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays hosted by Deb at Kahakai Kitchen, and at Beth Fish Reads for her Weekend Cooking event. If you have a food related post, feel free to jump in with it over the weekend, or just come and visit. Lots of delicious dishes.