One of the best presents I received for my birthday last year was a collection of French-inspired treats from my auntie.
I'm am just getting started with this book by Elizabeth Bard: Lunch in Paris. It is wonderful for me on so many levels. Firstly it's a romance of the international variety - an American living in London meets a Frenchman living in Paris. An affair begins.
Then I'm really enjoying the little cultural observations Bard makes. The things that surprise and even dumbfound them about each other's core identities, as a result of their cultural upbringings.
Finally the book includes intimate explanations of perfectly Parisian cafes and bistros followed by recipes inspired by those places. In other chapters she shares family recipes. I'm not a foodie but I think it's well-known that I do love to eat. And I love recipe books.
Today, in preparation for my class tomorrow (Chatty Cafe) I am making a Yogurt Cake which Bard attributes to blogger Clotilde Dusoulier of Chocolate and Zucchini. It was an absolute cinch to mix up and uses ingredients which are almost pantry staples for me. Lemon zest was called for in Bard's version and I happened to have a lemon in the fridge. The topping could be either canned apricots, which I had, or chopped pears, which I also had. So easy!
Bard also has a blog which I plan to explore after I finish the book, I don't like spoilers! although I do kind of know what's going to happen in the book.