Nov 17, 2010

French Cuisine should be protected.

UNESCO has added gastronomy to it's list of 'intangible world heritage'.  French gastronomy is viewed as a "social custom aimed at celebrating the most important moments in the lives of individuals and groups"

In an interview on NPR, the reporter asked, 'Does French cuisine need to be protected?'  Apparently not, but just in case McDo and Picard start to gain strength in the country, better to protect the sacred French meal now.  Gastronomy is not just about food, but also "how wines are paired with dishes, how the table is dressed, the precise placing of glasses, for water, red and white wine, knife blade pointing in and fork tines down..."

Well you don't have to convince me.  While I might not get to make a 4 course meal every night, a little wine and cheese at the end of dinner is a delicious way to end a meal.  If I tell my boys to stay at the table, they are getting 'cheese'  they patiently wait (they are BTW 18M and 3Y).  L knows good cheese from less good cheese.  When given the choice between a Camembert and a vache kiri (laughing cow), Camembert is always chosen.    Little Z (18M) often steals cheese from A's plate and can be seen giggling at his acquisition. 

A couple of weeks ago, we had such a meal.  Started out with Foie Gras with wine-poached pears and a balsamic vinaigrette sauce with a Sauterne wine.  Then we has duck with rooted vegetables (carrots, turnips, potatoes and garlic) with a Bordeaux wine.  Then we had blueberry ice cream with  chocolate cake and other dessert goodies with Champagne.  There was no cheese.  But I am sure if any more good was eaten, we might have exploded.  6 adults, 3 kids it was quite a meal.

I feel like I am going my part to protect French culture;)

Nov 14, 2010

Giving Up Too Early

When I was in grad school, I gained quite a bit of weight.  I'm not sure how much of that was due to:
1) Stress
2) Cookies that were at every seminar and journal club
3) Trying different BC pills (the ones that made me cry also made me gain weight)
4) Cheap Beer

At some point I just gave up on my skinny self and accepted that I would be just a bit overweight.  In this acceptance I gave away all of my cute skinny girl clothes.  How sad life can be.  It was almost the act of giving those clothes away, that made the lbs melt from my body.  Well actually, getting pregnant seemed to be the secret to my weight loss.  I was so sick with the 2 pregnancies that the lbs melted away, well they turned into a baby.  So now I have little clothes in my new size.  I have been buying clothes since Z was born - but finding clothes that do not look like I have jumped out of a Micheal Jackson video from the 80s is tough.  What is wrong with 'classic styles'??  Maybe I am not a total Fashionista, I admit, I want to buy stuff that will last into next year.  Call me practical.  I would be happy to jazz up a plain sweater or t-shirt up with a junky scarf or socks.

I find myself looking for that great pair of jeans or sweater just to remember that it was lost.  So now I have lots of clothes that are too big, how long do I need to keep them?  Fovever?  Who has the closet space for that.  Maybe I never learn my lessons.

Nov 13, 2010

Still Waiting

Sometime in September I got myself fingerprinted and sent away for my criminal report from the FBI so I could apply for French citizenship.  Sad to say that I am still waiting more than 6 weeks later.  The FBI seemed to have just taken my money.  So I wonder how much longer it will take.  When is the money taken step?  When they are ready to send out my report, when they start to think about my report.

They claim 6-8 weeks...  So still waiting.

Nov 10, 2010

French Missionary?

You can imagine missionaries campusisng the globe looking for converts.  Today I was accused on being a French missionary.  Do I tell people that they should 'convert to Frenchism?'  No!  Never!  I am not sure that I am the best cheerleader for the country.  I don't like Camembert, I don't watch Rugby, I drink Virginia wine, sometimes I eat fried chicken from Popeyes.  I am certainly not a poster-child for Frenchness....  So I like a good Bordeaux, know how to make duck and rabbit, and can sometimes have been known to say a French phrase or two....  But doesn't make me French and honestly I have never tried to convince anyone that France will bring them salvation.  I am torn between two worlds -- old World Europe and New World North America.  I can choose anymore easily than I can choose my favorite chocolate or my favorite wine.  Wine and Chocolate are choosen based on the needs.  If I am having steak and cheese, my wine choice will be different than if the meal is moules frites.  Snickers is good for a chocolate, peanut and caramel craving, but dark is better with coffee...  France and the US are like wines.  I choose based on what I am looking for -- what do I want today?  Steak or Mussels?  Both are good and both have draw backs.  Well this is not true of steak and mussels, but countries sure thing?

Maybe I should start my own church of Frenchness though, I heard that churches get a tax break;)  Do you want to be a Frangilcan -- it's a church of indecision...