Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Silk...and French Inspiration

Vintage Silk scarf by Vetter of Switzerland
easy to wear and so soft...
Silk and cashmere are two of my all time favourites.

When I think of lovely lingerie 
 France comes to mind...
the selection and sumptuous styles for women 
of all shapes and sizes 
are plentiful in the shops of Paris.

The lingerie sections at
Galleries Lafayette
The Bon Marche 
are two that stand out.

It is so easy finding beautiful intimates in France...
there are lingerie shops in the smaller villages too!

I've been lusting after some new lingerie...
it is on the top of my list.

I love wearing this
Nougat Silk Camisole
soft mauve shade with purple lace.

Silk feels sensuous 
wearing a silk nightgown or camisole makes me feel very feminine.

I've juxtaposed the silk with denim here for a day of domestic chores and cooking.

Cooking new dishes has become a bit of an obsession of late...
Julia Child has some amazing books and You Tube videos of her PBS shows.
I have to smile when I watch some of these older videos...
she is such a character!

I felt like I was in a bit of a "cooking rut"
 so kicking it up a notch and trying some new recipes feels so energizing.

I made a jar of Julia's basic and very simple vinaigrette and loved the flavour.

In the movie Julie and Julia the scene from the Paris Cafe 
where Julia, played by the talented Maryl Streep, is served sole 
 seriously resonates with me...

that incredible dish is Sole Meuniere.

I plan to make this dish for my husband...
 I am substituting fresh halibut 
as it was the freshest fish offered at the fish monger.

The butter needs to be clarified ahead of time.
I spent the afternoon prepping dinner.

I made an endive leaf salad with crumbled bacon, sliced cherry tomatoes, scallions and grated parmigiano Reggiano
which is covered and is chilling in the fridge.

The vinaigrette will be drizzled over top just before serving. 

Asparagus will be steamed and served with the fish dish...
a few slices of a baguette will be at the ready to sop up any of the juices.

I will boil up a few waxy yellow potatoes to serve with the halibut.

Dessert will not be served...
as neither of us have "sweet teeth"
besides it will be a "big" meal...
enough to satisfy our humble tastebuds.

I sharpened all our knives too...
they were getting incredibly dull.

We have an electric sharpener by Chef's Choice 
I have practiced on several knives I think I have the hang of it.
Boy having a super sharp knife is so wonderful.
I'm kind of proud of myself for learning a new skill...

This book is quite a fun read...
am only into a few chapters so far as
I sat down for a few minutes to put my feet up and have a cuppa...
almost didn't want to get back up and put the book away!!

Bon Appetit!

~ Be Well and Be Kind ~


  1. Your dish looks very appetising! I like endive for its crunchiness. Also asparagus are deliscious but, I have yet to eat them this season.
    You look very pretty in that scarf Leslie; it suits your colour tone perfectly!
    Greetings Maria x

    1. Our home grown asparagus is almost ready for the first harvest...this weekend for sure we will be picking a few stalks. Thank you for the compliment about the colour of the scarf...it was a real find...in perfect condition and the pop of yellow makes me feel energetic even on a grey rainy day!

  2. Like you, Hostess. I love trying new recipes. If you are looking for a new chicken recipe, google: "Rishia Zimmern's Chicken with Shallots". It is a recipe published by the NY Times. I've made it three times now and everyone has loved it.

    1. Thank you for that recipe suggestion...I have copied it and will try making it soon. It reminds me of a similar recipe that Jamie Oliver has in his Cooking at Home book.

  3. The dinner looks delicious; I love both halibut and sole, but fresh sole for some reason is easier to come by here. I must try her salad dressing as it has been a while, it sounds similiar to the one in her Salad Nicoise recipe - which is wonderful.

    I burst out laughing thinking what a mess I would make of myself cooking in anything silk...I am a terribly messy cook. But on you it is perfect!

    Bon Appetit!

    1. Oh I wera an apron in the kitchen... a linen one that covers me from my neck to my knees! I look like a "bag Lady" but it serves its purpose by saving my clothes!!!
      Hope you enjoy the vinaigrette...simple and tasty the flavours work well with even a simple green salad....although I do like to shave a wee bit of fresh parmigiano reggiano cheese overtop!

  4. Your dish looks yummy! I've been perusing some cooking magazines lately and want to get out of my cooking rut. We have our favorites, but it's always fun to try something new.

    1. My husband loves to watch the food channel...but I find so many of the shows that he likes involve fried foods...I prefer less calorific dishes and fish with a wee bit of lemon and parsley with a few knobs of butter is just what I like!
      Good luck with your recipe testing...

  5. I loved Julia and Julia, what a great movie, and the book looks enjoyable too. Your dinner looks a treat, and thank you for the recipe. I will definitely try it. We have salad most days of the year. Silk does feel wonderful, and I love my silk kimono. Your cami looks exquisite on you!

    1. I rewatched the film...such a treat to see Amy Adams and Meryl Streep together onscreen.
      Now a silk Kimono would be a luxurious and elegant garment...it may not be warm enough for our Fall and Winter but I am pretty sure that it would be warm enough for our summers....now you've got me thinking...where can I find one?
      Where did you find your kimono?

  6. First off, I have to say you have beautiful handwriting. Mine is deteriorating because I use the laptop too much. Secondly, that scene from Julie and Julia makes me want to watch that movie again. After I saw it the first time, my kids went in and bought me her cookbooks. I should open them up; I had tea and toast for dinner tonight. Wearing silk lingerie and sharpening knives in the kitchen -- now that sounds like a movie plot, haha! Your dinner looks delicious. And no, I didn't give up blogging, although it probably looked that way. xo Deborah

    1. I have really changed my handwriting from grade 3 when we were instructed to use the MacLean's method! Its a mixture of printing and writing that I use now.
      I recently re watched the film and loved it! You may enjoy seeing it again too.
      The Hostess was seen wearing a Silk camisole and sharpening knives...hmmm maybe a who done it?

  7. I've been meaning to sharpen my knives for months, maybe this weekend I'll finally get around to it. Also have Chef's Choice, the XV model which sharpens to a 15 degree angle, which I prefer. One of my best friends has it on her calendar to sharpen knives twice a year: when we turn the clocks back in Fall and ahead in Spring. I have yet to follow her example...........

    Recently I found Organic Valley Ghee (clarified butter) in the grocery store and decided to treat myself. It was only slightly more expensive than a pound of butter and is so convenient! Used it for seared scallops over the weekend and was so pleased with the results.

    1. My friend Jukie has the chef's choice that sharpens 15% edge o the blades...I need to sharpen our knives much more frequently than twice a year...I must use them a lot more than the average person?

      Seared scallops sound delicious!

  8. Hi Hostess one can never be bored in retirement there's always something to learn something to do. Love the cami.

  9. My go-to cookbook used to be Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child. I still make her dressing for salads. Strangely, I don't love the feeling of silk, maybe because it's generally so dry in California that it clings too much?

    1. Silk is a warmer fabric so I do agree...your climate may make it a bit too clingy...here it works well. It seems that many women grew up with Mastering the Arts of French cooking...my mother did not have this nor did she dabble in French dishes so I am new to the recipes and the book....love what I have tried so far.

    2. My mother didn't either - she wasn't much of a cook. I bought the cookbook when I was 19 and cooked my way through it. Every single recipe is great. I was thinking of you yesterday, as I wore a silk blouse to a luncheon, and because it was dry and windy, so much static in my blouse. I do love the way silk looks though.

  10. That's a beautiful photo of you--and the silk-and-denim combo looks fantastic.

    1. I wasn't too sure if I should share the photo as I look rather unkempt...messy hair etc...so thank you.

  11. You look very hot in the camisole and jeans. I will copy the Julia Vinaigrette recipe.Thanks. Keep those recipes coming.

    1. Oh that's quite a compliment Sandra! I never would have considered my outfit as "hot!" maybe a bit edgy or bordering on rebellious...isn't it fun that we can dress as we please now that we are retired?

  12. Your husband is a lucky man!

    1. I am actually the lucky one...he takes great care of me! :-))

  13. Your husband is a very lucky man, coming home to a meal like that AND a wife fetchingly clad in Nougat camisole. . . .;-)
    Good for you learning to keep your knives sharp. We use a few different manual sharpening tools, but I'm never quite convinced they do the job. Doing something about that has been on my list for a while (when one of our daughters was doing her Culinary Training, she remarked once that our knives were "Dangerously Dull" -- a friend then commented that would make a very good book title! ;-)

    1. We also have a stone for keeping the edge on our knives but it does not work as well as the Chef's Choice machine...I highly recommend it.
      Dull knives ARE dangerous as they bounce off the food when you use them...the sharper blades slice through most things.

  14. Just wondered if you had seen the last edition of "Victoria Magazine" - it's their French issue so thought you might be interested.

    1. Yes I have it and its lovely! They do such a great job with their magazine...

  15. It's a lovely camisole and it suits you great.
    I love silk very much (as well as cashmere) indeed and wear it a lot (but never when I cook!). It is interesting-when I was young,I've wear silk only as lingerie and scarfs,didn't like silk blouses or dresses. It has changed with time
    Your meal looks delicious,cooking can be so creative,no?
    Asparagus are one of my favourites,wild and the grown ones,both have arrived to the open market two weeks ago

    1. I wear an apron when I cook so it covers me from my neck to below my knees!
      It would not be wise for me to cook anything without protection of the linen apron!
      Our garden asparagus is almost ready to be harvested...it grows for about a month and we keep picking it as it ripens...nothing as tasty as market fresh veggies or picked fresh from the garden!

  16. Just want to share a wonderful book title. I have read all the biographies on dear Julia.. (I adore her) but the BEST by far is Appetite for Life by Noel Riley Fitch. A glorious read!

  17. Thank you Georgia...I will see if my local library carries that title...
    hope you are enjoying this patch of sunny weather!