Monday, December 1, 2014

Novembre 2014

November 2014
Shaggy mane mushroom that I found in
Gevrey while walking.

Busy month, at least the first couple weeks were busy. Last couple of weeks I have had a cold and have been housebound. The abnormal fact about this month is that I did not take many photos! So not a lot to add to this Blog.
And so it goes.

We have had an unusually warm November, until today. The temperature has been 50°-65°, warm indeed. This morning (Saturday the 29th  nov) I got up and it was 4° Celsius outside! Brrrrrr ( OK 4 degrees C is 39° F).

On November 8th, we were invited by the mayor for a little ceremony and a glass of wine. This was to celebrate our french citizenship. It has been a year since we got our citizenship, but the city of Gevrey only does this every so often. Not a lot of people becoming citizens in a city with 5,000 habitants. Most are already french.  The paper did an article about it too, but I did not attach it because it was in french.
It was a nice ceremony. The mayor said a few words, and then Keith said a few words ( no surprise there). Members of the city council were also there, as were Marie Thérèse and Christian.

Halle de Réception de Gevrey.
Keith had a few words to say too.   Photo by MT Hoquet 

Mayor of Gevrey giving us some documents
Photo by MT Hoquet
Photo that was in the newspaper
With the article in the paper, we have had our 15 minutes of fame.

Also this month, the association had the  3 Expositions ( one in the Haute Côte, the Côte and the plain for the villages of the commune of Gevrey) for the Centennial. A busy time getting that done. On the 12th of nov, there was a talk about the soldiers and the wine allowance each soldier was given per day. There were lots of numbers given, but just think of transporting all the wine to each and every camp!! There was also a chart on all the diseases that wine could cure (I believe, yes I do- well maybe not some of the things on the list)! This was the first war, so around 1914! Two men were present and dressed as french soldiers. After we had a dinner with them and those from the Assoc that wanted to participate. Wine, pate, salads, cheese and dessert.)
Pinard des Poilus
2 soldiers in 1914 military uniforms

Back to the 11th, Armistice Day. Keith and I joined in on the ceremony at the monument aux morts ( monument to those that died in the war). First everyone gathered at the center of the village and then marched with the band to the monument ( two blocks maybe). At the monument a wreath was laid, the mayor gave a speech and the band played.
Lined up with the band and the fireman

Ceremony at the monument
There were about 200 people at the ceremony. After everyone was invited for a glass of wine. Keith and I looked at the crowd trying to get into the Salle de Fête and decided to skip the glass of wine!

I must admit, with the cold I have not done my daily walks...mea culpa! Have to get back into action.

We had a very nice Thanksgiving dinner. Marie T and Christian celebrated with us, as usual. We had a very traditional dinner with firsts cream of broccoli soup, then turkey, mashed potatoes (see recipe below), stuffing, beet salad and pecan pie. The thing about the turkey this year, he was very long (only about 11 pounds) and barely fit in the oven. But the the new thermometer, he was perfect! If you are into wine, we started with a white from Ladoix (the vines are right next to Charlemagne) and then a red, Chambolle-Musigny Bonnes Mares 1998, both were very nice!

Another project this month is the start of planning what to do for the Photo Expo. Hard work thinking and thinking!! I may have mentioned that the theme is multiple photos. I have been working on the idea of putting photos that are graphic into a P. Mondrian type Boogie composition, and calling it Graphic Boogie. Getting the balance is the trick. The other, making a mosaic with 1 x 1 cm photos of flowers...hmmm that would be about 2,000 little pieces! Do I have time?

Keith has been riding when the weather permitted. He sold one of his antiques bikes to a man who has started a small bike museum. Project, cleaning the garage.

Recipe of the Month
Potato casserole ( mashed potato casserole )
This is an easy recipe that can be made the day in advance. Makes it easy to do ahead and it is good.
Makes 5 servings
  • 2 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature ( I used abt 2 oz of cream cheese and abt. 2 ounces Boursin cheese with herbs and garlic)
  • 1 cup sour cream ( or creme fraiche)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick)  butter 
  •  2 tablespoons plus of butter for topping before cooking -cut into small cubes (never skimp on butter for the mashed potatoes!)
  • salt and white pepper

1. Place the potatoes in a pan and boil until tender; around 20 to 25 minutes. Drain the potatoes well.
2. Purée, mash or rice potatoes. Do not overwork the potatoes, they become gummy if worked too much.
3. In a pan, heat creme fraiche (or sour cream), cheese and butter. Watch carefully and stir so it does not burn.
4. Transfer the potatoes to the baking dish. Dot the top of the casserole with the 2 tablespoons of cubed butter. Let cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to one day. Remove from the refrigerator an hour before the final baking.
5. When ready to reheat, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375 F.
6. Uncover the casserole. Bake it until the top is lightly browned and the casserole is heated through, about 30 minutes. Serve hot.

adapted from Rick Rodgers writes in his new cookbook, “The Big Book of Sides.”

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