Friday, November 25, 2011

Giving Thanks

Go ahead. Try to tell me that’s not the most gorgeous thing you’ve ever seen in your life.

I just finished eating the last slice of the best pecan pie in the entire world.

How good was this pecan pie? It was no words goodthe kind of good where everyone looked up from their empty plates with wide eyes and open mouths, speechless as they tried to figure out what had just hit their taste buds.

It’s called pecan pie, y’all! And this particular recipe went over so well with the French that it happened to have gotten me a new job selling pies at Princesse Pirate, a new cafe and boutique in Monaco.

And no, I’m not kidding. My pecan pie will seriously be in the cafe window as the “tart du jour” on Tuesday. On Wednesday, it will be replaced by my apple and pear crostata.

In case you didn’t get that, I somehow just officially became a French pastry chef!

I think it’s clear that I need to get my new apron embroidered.

Mmmm. Love those French caramels! I think they made all the difference.

Okay, so I just gave the pecan pie a lot of facetime. But the pear and cranberry crostata absolutely deserves a little spotlight of it’s own.

Please don’t ask me if I ate a slice of the crostata for breakfast and had a slice of the pecan pie for dessert. Because I’d be forced to lie to you in the interest of my pride, and I hate lying.


Post-bake. Toasted to crunchy, golden perfection.

I know it probably looks like I spent the majority of yesterday afternoon just photographing food, mais c’est pas vrai. Actually, I spent 9 hours in the kitchen cooking up every single dish on our Texa-French-ican menu. And I loved every single one of them!

Then, of course, I spent about 2 hours eating. (French dinners are long. It wasn’t just because I went back for seconds).

These pictures were snapped somewhere in the middle of all of that craziness. And I’m so excited to share them with you! Consider this your belated invitation to our French Thanksgiving party. Bon apetit!

Homemade whole-wheat yeast rolls

I think this means that I’m either Martha Stewart or a housewife.

Either way, I’m over 40.

Winter vegetable puree

Since sweet potatoes and marshmallows weren’t readily available at Carrefour, I went with the next best thing—a puree of yams and carrots with nutmeg, cinnamon, and all-spice added in for sweetness. And as soon as this baby was finished baking, I added a whole-wheat, walnut, and brown sugar steudel to the top, too.

Needless to say, my French friends were initially confused. They thought I was asking them to eat pie for dinner. (which, okay, I kind of was).

This is my wanna-be turkey. AKA, it’s a rotisserie chicken that I basted in butter and tarragon. But still. I had to cut his neck off and his little feet and…

…sorry, I know it’s getting graphic. But the butchers here really want to make sure you know that what you’re eating was once a real live chicken! What I’m trying to say is, it ain’t no turkey but it was some work. Maybe I’ll go for the real deal next year. This was definitely a good practice run!

Deviled Eggs

They may be devils, but they sure were heavenly. Too corny? I don’t care.

Apple Sausage Stuffing

Place settings

The blank leaves? We wrote our “I-am-thankful-for” statements on those.

How stunning is that table? Valerie is an incredible hostess.

So incredibly grateful for new friends.

And for new experiences.

And for having new experiences with new friends alongside me.

Let’s give thanks every day.

bisous, mes amis. xo

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