toward-chimney
Check out that fireplace! Love it!!!

This weekend we gave the courtyard apartment a test drive with a family slumber party.

It was like a mini-vacation. As if living in the south of France weren’t living-on-vacation enough.

Our kid decided that the best way to feel at home, and to test out the new oven, was to bake cookies. So we did. (They turned out great, which is why there are no photos).

We also cooked a simple meal. It’s almost embarrassing: we had cassoulet OUT OF A CAN. And you know what? It’s darn good. Not nearly as good as at any of the restaurants in the Academie Universal du Cassoulet. Not nearly as good as homemade, and I promise to give you a friend’s recipe soon.making-cookiesBut in a pinch, it’s a great no-thought hot dinner. We are partial to La Belle Chaurienne (translation: the pretty female from Castelnaudary).

Yes, even prepared, industrial food in France tastes pretty delicious. I can complain about a lot of things in France, but food isn’t one of them (except for the utter dearth of Mexican restaurants!!!!!).

We were smitten by the ambience of the 17th-century-updated kitchen. The table felt good there. A table that has been there for generations. We are keeping it in the same spot.

Some more before/almost-after shots coming very soon.

table
Just wait until you see what’s destined for that big, white wall.
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25 thoughts on “Dining In

  1. Looks very inviting! And I have to agree with you about the French canned cassoulet. It’s one of my favorite guilty pleasures. Whenever we visit, I have to have one meal of just that, a crusty “tradition” baguette, and a simple red wine.

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    1. We took “gastronomic” (6 servings) cans to family in the U.S. one year. Of course, that drew attention of the security people. We got stopped entering the plane. “Do you have anything suspicious in your bags?” the official asked. “Oh, you must have found the cassoulet,” we answered. The official could hardly keep from laughing as she radioed back to the baggage handlers that our luggage was fine.

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  2. Your apartment is so beautiful 🙂 I was planning on painting our new kitchen pale blue and now I have seen yours I am 100% committed to it 🙂
    I can agree about Mexican restaurants!! I don’t think the French are really into Mexican! Many years ago I had a horrible experience at one near Marseille, I didn’t understand the menu and would never have thought they would do it in a Mexican restaurant anyway, but I ended up with steak tartare in a tortilla bowl!!!! I HATE raw meat, I couldn’t eat any of it and had to share my husband-at-the-time’s meal as I was very hungry!!!I’ve never forgotten that meal!!!

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    1. Oh no! Actually, I love steak tartare. But I worked in a Mexican restaurant in a very ethnic Mexican neighborhood years ago, and I just love the food and miss it so much. Good luck with your kitchen!!!!

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  3. Your apartment is truly lovely, those tiles are so striking. I’m going to check out that cassoulet next time I’m down at my mobile home, as yet I have no oven so anything I can heat up in a saucepan is perfect.

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  4. My goodness – the apartment is looking fabulous. I’m going to need details as soon as you are taking those paying guests!!! I may well end up being one of them! Oh, and I can’t wait for the cassoulet recipe either. One of my very favourite dishes and so hard to get here…regardless of whether it comes in a can or is freshly made. I probably shouldn’t write this, but we ate it two nights running while we were in Toulouse…..

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