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chickenveronique

As I’ve written about my love affair with coffee, my love affair with wine also began in Spain and has gone on strong ever since. I have visited many a winery in Spain and the South of France where I drank in the knowledge like the fine wine it was. The land full of history, the families who lived in Provence for generations upon generations and their history is planted in that land and bottled up for all to experience. You Will Be My Son is as complex as a bottle of vintage Bordeaux. It begins, like a tasting, soft…

Tomato soup French

Winter has arrived, at least here in Kansas City. The chill in the air has me bundled up inside wanting nothing more than to create wanderful recipes for you! Today I was craving something I could make in a cast iron dish, a recent purchase and most likely the start of a new obsession. I settled for something familiar, something warm, something French, yet Spanish inspired. As a mostly vegetarian, let’s call it chicken-atarian, I had difficulties with the cuisine in Catalonia. It is centered around meat. Beef and pork, sausages-you name it, they find a way to add it to…

SavoryCrepe

The film this week is a risqué one. A young seventeen year old beauty discovers her sexuality-then sells it. Taking place in France, Isabelle lives a second life.  The story progresses nicely as it takes place over four seasons. Beginning with summer where she loses her virginity to a German guy while on holiday, autumn comes next with her beginning her business and so on. She develops a clientele and manages to meet a number of suitors but none like Georges, a much older man who begins to mean much more than just a few hundred euros. The film, ‘Jeune…

SalmonRecipe

Take a solitary perfectionist chef who lives a life of precision and throw in a child and a playful Italian nemesis and you have a film. Add beautiful food, jazz music and romance and you have a compelling story. The original to the Hollywood, No Reservations starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Aaron Eckhart & Abigail Breslin is a quicker-paced, comedy rather than a slower-paced ‘drama’. There are a few laughs in the German original but it definitely keeps with reality more so than the American remake. It’s weighted and down-to-earth not launched among the ‘stars’ and you can tell the difference. I…

Classic Potato Latke

Have you heard of Hannah Arendt? If not, I’m sure you have heard of Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi who was brought to justice in 1961. Arendt reported on the trial in Jerusalem for New York Magazine which she later turned into a book. She coined the term the “banality of evil” which is an evil without thinking, an evil done because orders were followed. She suggested that Eichmann was a “mindless bureaucrat”. While she agreed with the verdict Eichmann received, she criticized the way the trial was conducted. She was a controversial figure in the trial due to her stance…

Red Wine Pasta

Imagine having six children just to stay out of prison? That’s what Sophia Loren did in “Leri, oggi, domain” the 1963 Italian comedy. She is to be arrested for selling cigarettes on the street but Italian law states that if she is pregnant, she can’t go to prison. So she decides to keep having babies! This is only one of the three short stories that take place in this film. Each with Sofia Loren as the protagonist. The second story, perhaps the weakest of the three, is of a wealthy woman in her Rolls Royce on the way to the…

Can you believe August is almost over? I feel everyone these days is asking “Where has the summer gone?” I have been so busy that I have been breaking my number one life rule, to stop and enjoy life. Days go by that turn into weeks and you realize you’ve only been to the pool twice and are still as white as you were last winter. Lately though, the weather here has been perfection. Today especially, it reminded me of Barcelona. All I was missing was the salty sea air. After being cooped up indoors all day my body was…

I love going to the cinema. One of my favorite things is the ritual of it. Buying the tickets, getting the popcorn, choosing the seat. The smells, the visuals of it all. I often wish people still dressed up to go to the movies, I think truly great films, such as this one, deserve that. The little boy in Cinema Paradiso will steal your heart like he steals the film from the projectionist. He is sweet and funny and full of snark, just like a cute little boy should be. His love for the cinema is infectious and when his little eyes…

paella

“Vicky and Cristina decided to spend the summer in Barcelona. Vicky was completing her master’s in Catalan Identity, which she had become interested in through her great affection for the architecture of Gaudí”. While this film isn’t exactly foreign it is so beautifully done I had to include it this week. From the first line, this film got me. I felt proud when the narrator mentioned ‘Catalan Identity’, as hearing about Catalans and Catlonia is not a common occurence in films. While it isn’t exactly foreign, it takes place in the not-so-foreign-to-me, city of Barcelona. The soundtrack alone is beautiful.…

Vegetable Curry

Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara is an Indian drama that has earned its way to the top of my list of favorite films and one that I am so thrilled to recommend to you! It was shot in many exotic locals; Spain, India, Egypt and the UK with a 8.9 million dollar budget. The story follows three close friends, Arjun, Kabir and Imraan who travel to Spain for Kabir’s Bachelor party. They visit the Costa Brava, The Tomatina and The Running of the Bulls. They visit a beach that I have been to and they show you a town rarely seen…