You have to appreciate a lady when she promises you rhubarb from her garden with a copy of her recipe for rhubarb chutney and the very next day, she delivers said rhubarb and recipe. Bonnie is a peach! I will have to make her recipe so that I can tell her at next month’s French club meeting that it was yummy. I should try to make something else and deliver her some of whatever I come up with. While she was at the door, I was in the process of peeling potatoes because I decided to make a gratin Dauphinois or gratin of potato. It has been the perfect weather for baking and roasting things because it’s either drizzling, cloudy or sunny at a cool 69 degrees. I am not complaining, I love the roasting and the baking, I am only getting concerned for my plants because there is such a thing as too much rain and they can drown. Tomorrow they are predicting between 3 and 5 inches of rain, the grass in the park behind my house is flooded already, tomorrow won’t be pretty for the water logged meadow. Theoretically the next time we are due for sun will be on Saturday. My plants and I will be looking forward to Saturday. I do have to say that this spring has been really great in one aspect, I haven’t been plagued by May flies at all, between the rain and the wind, they were nowhere to be found this season. Hooray for that!
By now you must be thinking that I have gone through all of my relatives and no, I haven’t just yet. Today we welcomed my cousin, her husband and their nine children, none of which are twins, at my Tantine’s house. She is the one who is my chauffeur’s mother and my mother’s sister, who is currently staying there as well. At 11:30 this morning my Tantine, Tonton, the baby girl and I got into Tantine’s car to help prepare for the arrival of two carloads of small human beings and their parents. We didn’t come empty-handed, my Tantine made a terrine of potatoes, tomato and zucchini with creme fraiche and swiss cheese, she also brought the roast beef, the bread and the apricot tart. Tantine L. at her house had made a tiramisu and a huge mushroom, avocado and tomato salad. She also spent all day Wednesday making Vietnamese spring rolls for all of us, for later today at dinner. The roast beef and the terrine were simply for lunch.
We sat down to eat, mind you we were 17 divided between two tables, at 12:30, we had the hors d’oeuvre of gratton on toast rounds, gratton is a type of pate, and cantaloupe. The salad was the appetizer, next came the roast beef and terrine, followed by cheese and salad and then the two desserts. My cousin Didier and Vivianne stopped by for dessert and left after coffee.
Since we were killing time until it was dinner time to get back to the business of eating, we played cards for a while and then went for a walk around the neighborhood. When we got back, it was time to sit back down and tackle the Vietnamese spring rolls, to be brief, there aren’t any left. We went through the spring rolls, the lettuce and the mint as if we hadn’t eaten just a few hours before. On top of that we finished what was left of the apricot tart and graduated to ice cream. I tell you it almost feels like I have entered in the French marathon of family dinners, I am not complaining, they are just too great to pass up. The food, the laughs and the conversation, it’s the best.