(the misadventures of an expatriate corporate dropout)

Friday, March 13, 2009

spring has sprung...

more Africa installments coming soon ... but can I tell you I've been sidetracked by printemps?  yesterday, the sun began peeking and today ... glorious sun, glorious warmth... french doors flung open, birds singing, bumblebees buzzing and working outside in shortsleeves ... 

today was monsieur's birthday ... we lunched on carne asada I prepared and trimmings and I baked a banana chocolate pound cake because, as I told him, birthdays REQUIRE cake in America ... et je suis une americaine ... bah oui, bien sur ... I wanted to do a layer cake but I don't have proper measuring tools for recipe conversion and it was dicey enough with the cake I made ... which was yummy and simple by the way...from scratch of course.  on a side note, I'd recommend it ... start with 2 eggs, separate them and whip the whites up till they start to set then blend in the yolks, whip in about 3/4 c. of sugar and scrape half a vanilla bean pod in.  melt a stick of sweet butter and add it slowly, whipping and careful not to 'cook' the eggs.  after that, about a cup of sifted cake flour (the kind with the leavening in it)...whip it all together.  then mash 2 bananas, 3 or 4 soup spoons full of creme fraiche and scrape the other half of the vanilla bean in there too.  mix that well and fold it in to your batter.  butter your loaf pan, pour in the batter and THEN, take about 100 grams (or one large bar) of semi-sweet or dark chocolate and break it into bits and sprinkle it down the middle of the pan ... push the pieces down so they are submerged.  Bake 45 minutes in a 180 C oven or I guess about 325 degrees.  Delicieux, I promise... moist and yummy!


but back to spring springing...it is still beautiful out and I'm contemplating a stroll to the village and an aperitif in the sun ... peut etre, although I'm kind of wiped out from the work which has commenced on the atelier ... so maybe I'll just pour a verre and sit in my garden.
le sigh.  life is good.  my stories are backing up on me, I foresee some writing in my immediate future (otherwise known as the week-end).
ciao bellas!

3 comments:

Randal Graves said...

You're almost making spring palatable, but then I remember you don't have cracker yokels blaring faux country and rap up and down the street while the dead-eyed suburbanites weed whack and edge their precious, precious lawns wasting water on shit that's gonna dry out the first week-long stretch of 90+ heat.

If I sound jealous of your froggy printempts jaunts and your frenchie jardin soon-to-be plein de fleurs, I am.

Non Je Ne Regrette Rien said...

you are right. I don't have any of that. I am SO freakin' lucky!

Mrs C said...

If I may make a comment on recipe conversions in this country...

It took me FOREVER (possibly because I'm a git) to realise that recipes are based on weights here where our North American recipes are based on volumes. HUGE DIFFERENCE.

If you are planning on doing any French cookery, you might want to get a French measuring "cup" which is a glass with average gram weights written all around it for sugar, flour, cocoa, liquids, etc...