English Meal at La Club de l’Amitié Daglanais (friendship club)

The first thing that I would like to say is a very large congratulations to everyone that took part in bringing the first ever “British” meal to be held at the Salle des Fétes last Sunday. Everyone worked tremendously hard from the first planning stage to the end of the five course meal. On the menu was typically British food which was acquired by and cooked by the British members.  Who originated from Lancashire, Yorkshire, Scotland, Ireland and Canada, with help and support from France and Australia.

The menu consisted of an aperitif with nibbles, soup, pâté, beef and ale with vegetables, creamed potatoes and puff pastry, or a vegetarian option which was tofu with vegetables cooked in red wine.  Accompanied by lots of red wine, water or orange juice throughout the meal.  Followed by trifle then a selection of British cheeses then after eight mints with coffee and a generous shot of whiskey on the side.

My part was to make half of the trifles, thirty one in total, I had never made so many before but it was great fun to do.

English Meal at La Club de l’Amitié Daglanais A lot of the people in our village had never seen or indeed eaten a trifle before but they all love it especially the Cointreau or Armanac soaked sponge at the bottom.
 

IMG_20160423_114835I was particularly impressed by the organisation in the kitchen everything ran smoothly from start to finish.
 

IMG_20160423_121344The hall looked wonderful in red, white and blue.
 

My husband helped in the setting up of the tables, preparation of the vegetables, serving the quests and packing away at the end. Thank you to him for stepping in for me due to the fact that I had fallen half way down the stairs on the Saturday morning, nothing was broken but I have hurt my back and ribs once more.

One interesting ancient custom was that many of the French members performed ‘faire chabrot’ where a small amount of red wine is added to the remains in the soup bowl, which is stirred around a few times, then drank without the aid of a spoon.

DSCN1250Paul assures me it was delicious, but rather difficult to drink!

We planned a picnic in the car

Oh if only in one of these!

Last Sunday we thought that it would be a good idea to have a picnic breakfast beside the Dordogne River. However, the weather strongly disagreed with me, it was not raining but it was to cold and blustery. Plan B then, a picnic in the car looked good, then we would go on to St Cyprien for the Sunday market where I buy vegetables and fruit most weekends. But first Maison Carré at Castlenaud for their delicious pain aux raisins and croissants aux amandes which are freshly baked.

Imagine our surprise when we drove into the car park to see in front of us a wonderful display of vintage cars – beautiful.

Breakfast can wait a few minutes!

DSCN1232So elegant I so want this one.

 

Vintage and Veteran carsAnd perhaps these for Paul.

 

DSCN1236As we were taking photographs, more and more cars were arriving.

 

DSCN1237I expected Bonnie and Clyde to jump out at any moment.

 

DSCN1240A picnic in the above car would be wonderful, strawberries and champagne – yes please.

 

Tribute to our gorgeous Phoebe

IMG_20151103_105008Our gorgeous Phoebe

 

I think that this week has been the most stressful and unhappy week Paul and I have experienced in France.  Our little girl was not eating a great deal but drinking more and more cat milk or water. So we took her for a check up to the local vet’s, who tested her blood for everything.  To our shock it was found that Phoebe had kidney failure and that she would have to stay at the animal hospital for treatment.  However, by Monday the vet told us that Phoebe had only a few days to live and that if we took her home she would suffer. I would have given anything to save her. After talking to our son we finally had to admit that there was nothing that could be done and Phoebe was put to sleep while we gave her an Indian head massage, her favourite, she purred and went to sleep.

 

PhoebeShe loved to sit and wait for the supermarket next door to open. People would come to the window to talk to her.

 

DSCN0918Interested in the Sunday market and the Monday clean up of Le Place de la Liberté

 

IMG_20151230_151950If Phoebe saw you with a camera she would stop playing and pose for you – always the diva.

 

IMG_20160208_083547Look I have string, you can bite it, chase it, hide it and I look so good.

 

IMG_20160322_154014She loved the sun so much, here she is fast asleep but she also loved to roll on her back with her paws in the air.

 

We miss her so much, the one in a million cat, Phoebe.

 

 

The One Of A Kind!

To be really honest, like many people who was scared while watching the Alfred Hitchcock movie “Psycho” in their early teenage years, I had developed a phobia to showers, in particular showers with curtains! So it was a little upsetting to have a one of a kind shower in our small bathroom in France.

To be fair it did not have a shower curtain but it was a strange cylinder shape that made you feel totally enclosed once inside, I should mention that I am also claustrophobic!

DSCN1127

Our old cylinder shower

 

However, I am not one to shrink from a challenge and into the shower I went, panic at first but then I was so busy trying to keep the non closing door closed to prevent the water going all over the bathroom floor, and at the same time trying to regulate the temperature of the water from freezing to boiling point that my fear dissipated long enough for me to have a shower.

Shower

Not a lot of room as you can see, it had to go.

 

After planning the layout of the bathroom and looking at and testing out showers! I must explain that in order to have a new shower in the bathroom I had to step inside each shower on display in the various stores we visited to test out my phobia, panic or no panic! The result is below, a new shower which is perfect, no panic at all.

DSCN1178

In with the new

 

Now all we need to do is to find an antique wash stand with a marble top and a hand basin to compliment it, remove the tiles from the walls and floor and replace them with something more to our liking, paint the woodwork. The to do list seems to be getting longer!

 

French News:-

Single-use plastic bags are set to be banned from French shops by this month, April 2016. A second law is planned for January 2017, which will ban all other kinds of disposable plastic bags including those provided for packing fruit, vegetables and cheese!

Also, a ‘doggy bag’ law has come into force in France in an attempt to cut down on food wastage in restaurants across the country, brilliant, although I do not remember leaving enough food to take home when I have eaten in a French restaurant!