Wednesday, November 30, 2016


I've had a weary couple of days back to reality but I have plans for a big bowl of spaghetti for dinner so I am feeling like I may make it through the week after all. Also, each day after work I can look forward to picking up my daughters and seeing their chub little faces, and then going back to our home together, which is feeling more and more like a cozy cove. That was part of the plan you know, in order to fortify myself and ensure survival through the winter, to make our home feel warm and filled with holiday cheer. This cheer has to last us through all of December and January. First, because my parents are coming in January and we've decided that we are going to celebrate Christmas together this year in January with 12 days of celebratory huzzah, and second, because it helps my mental state to divide up the winter this way. Two months of cozy holiday in December and January, and then I'll have to come up with something for February and March. Then all of April will be for hoping.

You know what really helped kick off this feeling of getting ready for the holidays? In large part it was the meal that my sister Eunice cooked for us when she came to visit last week. She declared hat she was going to cook us dinner one evening, an offer I gladly accepted and became very excited about when she said she was cooking two recipes from Mimi Thorisson's cookbook. If you don't know about Mimi Thorisson, you are welcome. My sister Eunice told me about her and she is a lovely lady who lives in the countryside of France, in a gorgeous farmhouse, with children and dogs running about, a garden from which she cooks and bakes seasonally, and her husband who happens to be an amazing photographer. Check out her website here if you want to see. Thanks to Eunice's cooking, I have had my belly and senses filled with Mimi's winter cocotte and potato pie, and I am all the better for it.

The meal took time, but I didn't mind as the kitchen filled with good smells and we hung around the kitchen island talking, drinking wine and watching the girls play. This sort of activity is one of my favorites so I was already in a good mood, and also very hungry by the time we sat down to eat. It was delicious; the meal felt like two arms welcoming me into the bosom of winter cozy, or hygge, as the Danish would say.

This winter cocotte dish had chestnuts, pumpkin, parsnip, Jerusalem artichokes, garlic, onion, bacon cooked in red wine and stock, topped with butter and parsley. I ate several bowls of it alongside white wine and numerous pieces of buttered baguette topped with olive spread.

                            The recipe for the winter cocotte & the recipe for the potato pie

We punctuated the end of Thanksgiving break by making these holiday themed sugar cookies. These are stained-glass cookies that are particularly dear to our hearts because we used to make them when we were young. We have the best memories of making and eating these cookies together. 

Sloane helped Eunice bake the cookies and they turned out beautifully. That evening, Sloane, Eunice, and I finished decorating the Christmas tree, and sat by its lights as we had tea with cookies, listened to Christmas music, and made paper snowflakes. It was the perfect way to be together and get ready for the season. 

1 comment:

  1. how lovely to have your sister not only visiting but also cooking for you! what a sweet gift. the food looks uh-mazing!