My lifelong long-distance love affair with France has been reignited. To indulge this Francophile mood, I've been blissing out on a French-inspired banquet for the senses. Luscious food, atmospheric music, a beautiful book about Paris and my fave Chanel-like dress have helped me channel some French je ne sais quoi (et joie :)).
The Food: Fabulous Coq au Vin and Potato Leek Soup from "The Barefoot Contessa: Back To Basics." My lovely daughter actually stepped up to make the scrumptious Coq au Vin, and remarked on how manageable the recipe is. Ina Garten, you rock, toujours--always lavishing flavor, while making preparation more attainable for the home cook. I couldn't stop sneaking spoonful after spoonful of the ambrosial sauce as I was cleaning up.
Yes, these recipes take some time and effort, but your house bursts with amazing aromas and you're romanced by luscious, French food. My husband added his signature homemade baguettes-YUM.
New to me Mood Music:
"Cafe de Flore," by Doctor Rockit, replete with "found" cafe sounds. Quirky, upbeat-- with a deeper Gallic undercurrent.
Visuals to set the vibe: I'm obsessed with my Christmas gift, "Paris: An Inspiring Tour of the City's Creative Heart," by Janelle McCulloch. Her design background shines through on photo after evocative photo. Her engaging writing style, personal touch, and intriguing tips, transport your soul around the known and not-so-known Paris. Et voila. You can almost smell the croissants in the air.
Dress up (or fake it till you make it):
A splurge from Anthropologie this summer for a special wedding anniversary has been justified. Yay. Adding a sweater and lace tights (also Anthro, from a few years back, but they had similar ones in the store recently) has made it comfortable to wear this classic, sleeveless black lace number during the cold New England winter. Just the ticket for visualizing oneself visiting that lovely country across the sea, bien sur.
FRANCE: A bientôt, j'espère....