Food, Fun and Frolics

Hello dear Peeps! I hope you have all had a lovely week. The weather here has been good, but sadly I've not relly been able to get out and enjoy it. Last Tuesday my foot started to hurt, for absolutely no reason, from what I could tell. I'd been on my feet quite a bit during the day, cleaning and ironing, but it was abut 5.OO when I became aware that actually the side of my foot was really quite painful.

I had a kiné session on Wednesday morning for my back, but asked Jean Claude to take a look at my foot instead. He didn't think it was tendonitis, but started being very doom-laden and talking about bones that break for no apparent reason, except that they are "fatigued". He is very doom-laden about my feet anyway, saying that, because of some wierd condition I have, I'm likely to find I fall over more and more as I get older because my feet are clenching up and will be too small to hold me up! I'm afraid I can't quite get my head round this, and choose to ignore him.

Anyhoo, while the foot is getting less painful each day, I think it best to rest it, so haven't been outside much to enjoy the sun. I've sat on the balcony two or three times, but as they are doing big works across the road on the car park area, it's rather too dusty and noisy to sit out much.

But Friend Cathy has now arrived and the social life is picking up rapidly. Since she arrived on Tuesday we've all met up for drinks on Wednesday, Cathy, Richard & Mr FD and I went out to a restaurant on Friday, and Cathy came here for a curry yesterday! Of course, the wine consumption has also picked up, so I have to be wary of that.

Yesterday's curry was very good (though I say it myself!) I made onion bhajis to start - I used to miss these terribly, until discovering how easy they are to make!! It's sometimes difficult to find the gram flour but usually Grand Frais have it. I use the River Cottage Veg Every Day recipe - but I would imagine they're all much of a muchness. We had these with cucumber raita and mango chutney, and a carrot-and-lettuce salad. Then it was Hairy Dieters' Lamb Dhansak (scroll down for the Lamb Dhansak recipe) with rice

and Jamie Oliver's garlic-and-herb flatbreads. These are really easy and really delicious - I think they need more than the 1 - 2 minutes each side that the recipe says. Mine had about 4 minutes each side and were beautifully puffed up and soft inside. Delicious!!

We ended the evening eating Dime chocolate and watching the DVD, "Saving Mr Banks". Very enjoyable.

The rest of this week's food is looking like this:
TODAY:  Hairy Dieter Chicken Chasseur WARNING!!! This recipe is designed to feed 40 people - you will need to adjust the quantities! We're having this with celeriac purée and carrots.

MONDAY: Vegetable chilli with tortillas. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the avocados that have been in the fruit bowl for 2 weeks will finally be ripe, as I love sliced avocado on chilli tortillas: however I'm not holding out much hope!

TUESDAY: Roasted ratatouille and baked potatoes. There are lots of recipes for the rat, but basically, I'm going to chop an aubergine, a courgette, two onions and a red pepper into chunks. Then toss them, plus a couple of sliced cloves of garlic and some mushrooms, in a couple of teaspoons of olive oil. Tip into a baking dish and pop into a 180° oven. After about 10 minutes throw in some fresh herbs and 250g cherry tomatoes. Roast for about 30 minutes more, shaking the tin from time to time. Stir before serving.

This is Saint Delia's take on it.

WEDNESDAY: left over lamb dhansak

THURSDAY: Possibly chicken satay (but Mr FD has finished the peaniut butter and we ate the bag of cashews last night) Otherwise chicken breasts in some other guise. Don't know what though!

FRIDAY: Chorizo crust fish - planned for last Friday but not eaten as we were invited out. Fish went in the freezer so we'll have it on Friday.

Work is not very frequent at the moment, so I'm spending time coming up with ideas for the summer school where I'll be working in the summer: I've been there for the last three years, and last year was the most fun I've had there. I'm hoping this year will be even better!

I'm also popping over to the UK to see mum for a couple of days in May. In fact the end of May is going to be very full!
13-15th May - I'm in the UK
20th - friends of Mr FD from uni, that he's not seen for 30 years, are popping in to stay overnight.
23/24th- we are away overnight to celebrate our 30th Wedding Anniversary. We're going to this hotel

to stay and to eat in the restaurant. This is April's menu:

  • Mise en Bouche
  • Boeuf Charolais Mariné aux Epices Douces, Condiment aux Câpres, Lissé Bio de la Ferme de la Tourette, Salade de Pissenlits à l'Huile de Noix (Marinaded beef, with capers and a salad of dandelion leaves)
  • Lotte Cuite au Beurre Mousseux, Consommé de Tourteau au Gingembre et Coriandre Fraîche, Agnolotti au Safran Bio de Cesset Farci à la Chair de Tourteau, Cube de Céleri de Pays (Monkfish, consommé of crab (I worried that this might translate as tortoise!) and some other stuff)
  • Agneau du Bourbonnais en Cuisson Lente, Jus d'Os au Curry,Rattes Confites aux Agrumes et Thym, Artichaut et Champignons Boutons, Marmelade Tendre au Piment (Lamb, with a curry sauce, new potatoes and artichokes)
  • Fromages Frais et Affinés des Terres d’Auvergne (cheese)
  • « Accord n°3 »: Le Citron, la Meringue et le Chocolat Blanc peu Sucré (pudding: lemon, meringue and white chocolate)
It sounds huge, but I'm sure the portions will be well controlled.

It's not a cheap stay, but (a) it's a special anniversary and (b) I've been saving my 2€ coins since Christmas and have the price of the room saved up. With the windfall of finally getting paid from EAL we can afford the meal too.

28th May We're down in Clermont to see Public Service Broadcasting - a group/ band/ popular beat combo who we really like. They take Public service broadcasts, or clips from films, and sample them with their music. Their recent album takes broadcasts about various events during the space programme and weaves them into the music
This one is entitled "Gagarin":

and one of my favourire pieces is "Spitfire" 

30th May We are considering a weekend trip to Nimes to see another singer, Neil Hannon, otherwise known as The Divine Comedy. Mr FD saw him last year with Bert Bacharach, but I was away teaching. I was mighty jealous!! So we're thinking we may well go at the end of May, and stay in a cheap hotel.

So - a busy time ahead. What fun! With Cathy here too, I don't think my feet will touch the ground - I won't have time for working!!

Thank you for your lovely comments about my last post: heirlooms passed through  gebnnerations.
I did forget to mention two important heirlooms, so I'm going to go back to edit the post after I've finished this one.

That's it now, I think, but I did post something over at The Teapot that it might be worth reading. You might need it one day (though I hope not!) 
I finish with a  Space Age Kitty  in homage to PSB "Race for Space"


  1. I'm so sorry your foot is troubling you. I'll pray for a swift recovery!
    Is that the kitten that you are going to send me? I hope so! LOL.
    Your anniversary plans sound perfect. Wow! You HAVE to celebrate 30 years of love!
    Take care, sweet friend!

  2. Thanks for your comment on my blog. I hope your foot heals soon so you can get outside. I heard Public Service Broatcasting on Radio 2 yesterday, impressive! And we love Neil Hannon too. Your anniversary celebrations sound just the ticket, hope you have a great time.

  3. Eeek, sorry about the foot, sounds painful. Ooh, you're in the UK, how cool! Where is your Mum? The food sounds good- I like Lamb Dansak, delicious! xx

  4. Once again I find myself salivating while reading your post! Mmmm those meals sound divine! Sorry about your foot and I can relate to you choosing to ignore the doom and gloom GP is like that about my spine :-/

  5. Hope the foot continues to ease!


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