And so … I had read something wonderful in one of my very favorite books in the world, Simple Abundance, by Sarah Ban Breathnach.
Sarah had said there is a tradition in France, that on Wednesdays, women gather to have dinner together. I understand that this is an event where they bring and share food, reconnect, and celebrate their lives. She goes on to recommend the book My French Family Table, by Chef Beatrice Peltre. I fell madly in love with all of the above and immediately bought that cookbook (which I am also madly in love with).
At the moment I am arranging my travel points for returning to France this summer. I am thrilled beyond measure that I’ll be spending most of two months at two fabulous seaside destinations, bookended by time in Paris and London. At the end of my soiree, I’ll be returning to glorious Bayeux, Normandie for about a week.
Something that I would love to experience while I’m there, is My Wednesday Family Table in each home … which is why I’ve begun the story here in Redondo Beach. I want the gods to get the idea, and show them that I’m serious about this! Their job will be to bring me my summer guests.
For the last two weeks, I’ve hosted dinner here to share recipes from my forthcoming cookbook, titled Angel Food 2nd Edition: Love Made Visible on the Plate. My neighbors Mia and Gerard (also an author) have been my guests for both Tables, and last week my sister Lisa joined us.
It truly fills my heart to overflowing to have some of the people I love most in the world, at my table, in my home. To cook for them feels like such a gift – to me – and of course, I adore that they think my meals are fantastic. I don’t know who feels more blessed for this experience and, I really think it’s me.
My Week One Menu for My Wednesday Family Table was:
French cheese and homemade seeded crackers
Grilled Swordfish with Lime Butter Sauce over Jamaica Quinoa
Mixed roasted vegetables
Mei’s Apple Cake for dessert
My Week Two Menu for My Wednesday Family Table was:
Triple Hugs for Olivier Giroud (appetizer)
Scarborough Fair Pork Chops with Mashed Potatoes and Zigzag Roasted Squash
Fresh Norman Apple Sauce
Homemade sourdough roasted garlic bread
Homemade Madeleines with Vanilla Bean Gelato and Salted Caramel Sauce from Normandie
My Week Two Table was particularly special because my friend Mia had said at Week One, that she feels like she has four jobs, including caring for her aging mother. My heart went out to her – having had this experience. I made a special video to send her, inviting her to my home for dinner – indefinitely – as my way of honoring her for her caregiving. My sister Lisa had suggested that maybe I could send a meal home for Mia’s mama as part of my offering.
Et voila! For my Week Two Table, I cooked enough for the village, so there was more than enough to share. I sent home a plate for Mia’s mama with the greatest of care, joy, and pleasure. Not so surprisingly, Mia told me that recently, she and her mama had been talking about craving pork chops!
How blessed and joy-filled was I, to be that pork chop messenger.
How sacred might this Wednesday Family Table experience become, for me and mine.