The theme of this past week has been all about making new friends, which is such a rare gift that never ceases to amaze me and make me feel grateful.
It began with a fingerpainting (or rather, bodypainting) playdate, where I was thrilled to share some of my recent concoctions (Watermelon-fig granita, shiso nectarine ice cream, strawberry scones, quatre-quart cake) with the group of moms and their toddlers. Fun was had by all, every language and culture (or close) was represented, from French to German, to Japanese, Persian and Russian, to Argentinian and American...
Then, the highlight of our week was a day spent with Eric, Franka, Dexter and Pépé the cat at Gopher Springs Farm in Topanga Canyon, Los Angeles. This fantastic visit, to help harvest apples, peaches and nectarines, will be the topic of an entire post, but I couldn't resist sharing some delightful bites from the day here...
|The boys (13 and 14 months) had green onions, artichokes and olives for finger foods, they loved it!|
|The peaches we harvested, and some lavender buds|
|Franka prepared a fabulous lunch overlooking the canyon. I made peach lavender custard for dessert.|
Planning on starting a series called "My friends' garden", visiting gardens and cooking with friends, stay tuned for that.
Onward to this week's menu...
Cheeses of the week: Following French tradition, I always offer a little bit of cheese at the end of every meal, between the main course and dessert. Rotation this week: White cheddar from Vermont, Goat Gouda, Petit Basque, Babybel.
Desserts: At lunch, I offer a fruit yogurt (or plain yogurt with fresh fruit), but at night, I prefer sticking to plain yogurt (regular homemade* whole milk, sheep’s milk, and Greek yogurt for extra protein) to avoid too much sugar before bedtime.
If you would like a particular recipe on the menu, feel free to contact me! (I marked with a * the recipes that will be the topic of upcoming posts).
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Out to lunch with a friend! What we'll find at the restaurant, most likely avocado and tomato (I don't even look at the children's menu BTW)
Main course: Chicken & leeks puree
Goûter (4pm snack) - Peaches & nectarines (from this weekend's harvest!)
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Green beans, basil & blue potato salad
Main course: Baked bittermelon with veal stuffing (an experiment with bittermelon we found at the Asian produce stand.)
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Tomato, hearts of palm, cauliflower salad
Main course: Dover sole filet with broccoli-turnip puree
Goûter - Shiso Nectarine Ice Cream
Appetizer / Finger Foods: White asparagus in tarragon yogurt sauce
Main course: Stuffed tomato* (with veal stuffing)
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Cold cauliflower, basil and green bean salad
Main course: Trying the cardamom flatbread from Vanilla Bean blog, to make the peach, basil & ricotta flatbread from Cookie + Kate blog, accompanied by a soft-boiled egg (for extra protein).
Goûter - Nectarine & mint raw compote
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Leek's whites in baby vinaigrette*
Main course: Salmon & Sorrel puree
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Courgette & oregano flowers salad from Banger & Mash blog (if I can find flowers!)
Main course: Bison meat patty with kale puree
Goûter - Peaches with lavender yogurt*
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Artichokes & green onions with shallot vinaigrette (in fond memory of Gopher Springs Farm!)
Main course: Gorgonzola polenta with summer squash - a recipe I found here
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Endive & yellow tomato salad
Main course: Turkey & ratatouille*
Goûter - Peach, with my attempt at the black sesame pudding from La Fuji Mama blog
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Broccoli florets, vegetable noodles
Main course: Tofu with three roots puree
*Having friends over for dinner, planning on making this bread on a stick over a fire!
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Avocado, tomato
Main course: Sardine eggplant gratin*
Goûter - Cantaloupe & mint granita*
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Hearts of palm & vegetable noodles
Main course: Chicken basquaise
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Green asparagus tips with vinaigrette
Main course: Veal brunoise puree*
Goûter - Watermelon
Appetizer / Finger Foods: Green beans, feta & tomato salad
Main course: Trying Boiled squid with miso vinaigrette from Just One Cookbook blog