A Thousand Years of Apricots (Put them on the Grill)


I plucked a small, red-freckled apricot off the tree, looking furtively around as I did so.. I’d been gazing at these apricots for days,  watching them turn gradually from greenish orange to orangish red.  We’d been debating, my friends and I, whether they were ready and the answer was non, non, non.  But when no […]

Tapenade in Five – Roughly – Easy Steps

The sun is shining in Aix-en-Provence, whose surrounding region is home to that fabulously flavorful mixture called tapenade.  You know it, of course you do.  It’s what you dip fennel into, spread on freshly toasted bread, slip under the skin of a chicken before you roast it, or eat right off a spoon.  Olives, garlic, […]

Quick Apero

The book has landed!!! The book has landed!!! Naturally, this was news I couldn’t keep to myself so I called friends – all of them characters in the book – and invited them over for an apéro (or apéritif, shorthand for drinks before dinner).  It was time for concrete thanks to all of these people […]

Rural Paris, Rural France

I went to the Salon d’Agriculture in Paris last week, what I think may be the world’s largest “state fair”.  Thousands of farmers, sausage makers, ham-curers, honey collectors, bread bakers and more assemble at the Porte de Versailles to vaunt their wares and their regional pride to more than 700,000 people.  Perfect specimens of cattle, […]