Occupations of a French Teen

I walked in the gate of my courtyard and watched as Fiona (now 16) carefully dug a small hole in the newly tilled soil, stuck a perfectly trimmed and washed radish in it, and covered it so just the green stem was showing.  Nearby her friend, Elisa, was filming the process.  Fiona then looked at […]


I steamed and  sautéed baby turnips last night for dinner, then served them atop a bed of bay-scented quinoa.  It wasn’t a festival of colors, though the minced chives helped, but oh was it delicious! You may wonder what inspired such a meal. Part of it is my newly vegetarian daughter. The other part is […]

Red Currant Jelly

I’ve been so busy finishing a manuscript and taking care of the rest of the business of life that I hardly noticed summer was upon us. But Saturday, at the market, I saw the real harbingers of the season – red currants. Oh my, I walked right over to Mr.Brière, the man who sells me […]

Spring Buying Tips at the Farmers Market

A walk through the farmers’ market, particularly now when the season is changing and we’re suddenly offered a whole, new array of produce, is magic. It’s one thing to be seduced by the beauty and newness of it all, though, and another to know how to choose the very best, because it all looks fantastic. […]


Persimmon. It has always been a mythic fruit to me, one my grandmother talked about from her childhood.  Because they grow in warm climates, and because I have never lived in one of those, they weren’t ever part of my diet. Oh, I occasionally found them at the market in New York when I lived […]

Market Men

My market is filled with perfect seasonal produce, gorgeous meat and poultry, incredible sounds and colors, and a host of great looking men. Why? Because in our corner of the world men cultivate mushrooms and apples, make creamy fresh goat cheese, raise ducks for foie gras, tend chickens who lay the most beautiful eggs, serve […]

Scallops are Here

Scallops are here! Scallops are here! They’re early this year and the prediction is there will be few on the market because the price of oil is keeping boats in the dock. I hope this is not true. There was plenty for all at the Le Neubourg market this morning, and I hope it stays […]

Salon d’Agriculture

Today at the market,  farmers told jokes about the cold, grey weather and their static crops, the kind of jokes that hide tears.  And the elders here say they haven’t seen a time without light as long as this in years. Combine that with the world political situation, and the gloom hovering at the edges […]

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