Monday, November 30, 2009

La France, Shrimp, Decorations, Google Chrome.

I just was checking out the countries reading my blog. I was surprised so many were in France - I know a lot of French people are fluent in English, but nevertheless its surprising. Personally j'adore la France. I miss you France and wish I could visit you once more but I am an awfully long way away. I spent many hours in France, most of them, but by no means all, in Paris which despite a lack of paint, is still a great lady. I am now referring to 40 years ago of course. Things have probably changed. I have visited many areas of France and always enjoyed being there. I never had a bad meal anywhere, be it south, north or in the middle although I never went east. The food was always superb. I very much envy Marilyn of French Marilyn's blog (see link this page) who lives in Paris. In those days, we lived pretty close to France (the pink bit at the top of the map is England) so it was never very far to go. Saturday I made the Shrimp Saltimbocca with Polenta (see blog from Nov. 24), it was great, we both enjoyed it very much. Its very simple and easy to cook. I have to confess I scorched the polenta a tad, I had an Avon phone call right in the middle of cooking. However, it was OK when we ate. We drank a nice white Mouton Cadet Bordeaux with it which really complemented the dish. The decorations are up. Hoorah. We got through it once again without murder and mayhem. Matt is saying never again will we put up a tree, but it does look good once it is up. We vaguely thought about buying one which has lights on it already, but a size big enough for our room would cost a small fortune I think, plus, I wonder how long the lights actually last. If its anything like the tree lights, we usually end up buying those every year. Have you investigated Google Chrome? I started to the other day. Apart from anything else, they have books on line. I am reading Little Lord Fontleroy by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson - an old classic which had never come my way and which I had always wanted to read.. But they have all kinds of other books too. There is another section where you can write notes which can then be posted to your blog. It has access to the calendar too which I am using more and more these days as I can pick it up on my laptop if needed. We buy pork tenderloins at our local Costco (a retail warehouse chain) and find they are excellent. This recipe from Eating Well is one we will definitely try in the near future. Almond-Crusted Pork with Honey-Mustard Dipping Sauce From EatingWell: March/April 2009 Sliced almonds add a delectable, almost-like-fried-chicken crunch to the breading for these tender pieces of pork. We slice the pork thinly to keep the cooking time quick. The resulting pork “fingers” are great dipped in this surprisingly simple, delicious honey, soy and mustard sauce. 4 servings Ingredients * 1 cup coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat (see Note) * 1/2 cup sliced almonds * 1 teaspoon garlic powder * 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt * 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper * 1 large egg white, beaten * 1 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices Dipping Sauce * 1/4 cup honey * 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce * 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard Preparation 1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Set a wire rack on a baking sheet and coat it with cooking spray. 2. Place breadcrumbs, almonds, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a food processor; pulse until the almonds are coarsely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a shallow dish. 3. Place egg white in another shallow dish. Dip both sides of each pork slice in egg white, then evenly coat with the almond mixture. (Discard any remaining egg white and almond mixture.) Place the pork on the prepared rack and coat on both sides with cooking spray. 4. Bake the pork until golden brown and no longer pink in the center, 16 to 18 minutes. 5. Meanwhile, whisk honey, soy sauce and mustard in a small bowl. Serve the pork with the honey-mustard sauce. Tips & Notes * Note: We like Ian's brand of coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs, labeled “Panko breadcrumbs.” Find them in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets. To make your own breadcrumbs, trim crusts from firm sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Spread the breadcrumbs on a baking sheet and bake at 250°F until dry and crispy, about 15 minutes. One slice of bread makes about 1/3 cup dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs. Have a great day.


  1. No, tell Matt to always put up a tree ... It's cosy and welcoming.

    My building's supervisor put up our decorations (in the lift and foyer) yesterday. He (but perhaps it was his wife) has done it really chicly ... (now, I know there is no such word as chicly, but it sounds chic does it not, Jo?)

  2. Vraiment, chicly it is. Yes our super and his wife put up decorations. Actually the first super we had did a much better job but I won't mention that to them.

    Matt is not really anti a tree, just this tree which is getting more and more difficult to assemble as the years keep creeping on to us.