Sunday, August 28, 2005


a world without mirrors:
no reflection of self
except a grunt
encountering one’s smile;
in response to one’s words.

One day, bending over
to wash one’s head,
a beautiful image
looks back from the water surface.
Smiling one’s smile,
or raising eyebrows.
Pouting its succulent lips.

Wouldn’t you
fall in love with that face?
Wouldn’t you gaze at it forever?
Wouldn’t you?

Get real!
We all spend hours
peering into the ponds
on our walls!

Friday, August 26, 2005

Veal Casserole

Brown cubed veal in butter.
Scoop into oven proof dish with a slotted spoon.
Sauté some shallots and one (yellow, orange or red) pepper in the butter.
Turn off the heat and gently mix into the vegetables: 1 tablespoon flour, 1 dl white wine, a few scoops of crème fraîche, thyme, salt and pepper.
Pour over the meat and cover.
Stew in preheated, 150 C oven for one hour.
Serve over rice, accompanied by a green salad.

Monday, August 22, 2005

French Women Don't Get Fat

One of our guests brought us the book French Women Don’t Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano, who sings the praises of food and wine, and how to enjoy them without putting on weight. It is a lifestyle book, different from any other in that it is Catholic in its tone of celebration, so unlike the puritanical guidelines that come from America about how all the good things you have enjoyed in life are bad, because they contain butter, or germs (very bad!!), or whatever else is fashionably contemptible.
Many years ago I became interested in cooking meals without meat or fish, and got a vegetarian cookbook from my dear mother in law. It was all about “healthy” and “good for you” and unfortunately extremely boring. I shamefully admit I never used it once. Shortly after that P brought me a Moosewood Cookbook from the US (Yes, it is possible!) that was oozing with enjoyment of food, with excitement about how this ingredient would enhance the taste even more: a celebration of eating. It was only after a while that I realized that this was a vegetarian cookbook. I’ve been hooked on it ever since!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Palatable: Mirabelles

P cut down some hazelnut bushes and revealed a tree full of mirabelles, miniature yellow plums, that were just ripening. We picked all the fruit from the tree, five kiloes, and I made jam:

Boiled the fruit until it was soft. The stones were supposed to float to the top, but they didn't. So I decided to push it through a collander, not having the patience to wait overnight for the juice to have dripped from a jelly bag.
Weighed the pulp and added approximately between 3/4 and 1 time their weight in sugar. Brought to the boil and allowed to bubble for 10 minutes. (Assuming mirabelles, like plums, had a high pectine content. I was right!)
Poured immediately into clean jars, closed them tightly, and turned them upside for better sealing.
We had some this morning with our croissants, and fresh, unpasteurized butter, like you don't taste anywhere else!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005


Our joys here are mainly visual and palatable:
"O! Look at the view!"

Monday, August 08, 2005


This is an absolute gorgious dessert that A made for P's birthday:
Preheat oven to 150º C. Beat 4 eggwhites to soft peaks. Gradually add 225 grams of castor sugar until the eggwhites are shining. Sift 6 teaspoons of cornflour into the mixture and fold it in, together with 1 tsp white vinegar. Scoop into a round mold, lined with baking paper. Put in oven, reduce the temperature to 120 º C, and cook for 1 hour. Turn the oven off and allow meringue to cool. Spread real French crème fraîche on top and cover with red currants or other summer fruit. Serve immediately.
A feast!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Figs and Goat's Cheese

Cut two figs per person in half and lay them face up in a small ovenproof dish. Cover with slices of goat's cheese and slide under a hot grill until the cheese is browning and bubbling. Serve immediately as a starter.

Hot!! and chique!!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


wilde ik geluk vastleggen
op een foto:
veldbloemen in een jampot,
het silhouet van een boom tegen de avondlucht,
de glinstering in je ogen.

Ik kon het niet.
Het zou toch nooit lukken.

Want hoe fotografeer ik
de geur van regen,
een zingende viool,
de zon op mijn gezicht?

De huid van een kind tegen mijn borst,
je stem als je me roept,
de lach die we samen delen.

Ik heb dus mijn camera
in de kast geborgen.