Monday, June 19, 2006
Madeleine # 7: In-Laws & The Food of Love
H2B had warned me that they were very different, but it still gobsmacked me when I met him. Husband is taller than me (1,90 m), blonde, blue eyes - a true viking. Brother-in-Law to Be (BiL2B) is my height (1,75 m), and as dark as Husband is fair. It also gobsmacked me that he had a girl perched on his back, like a little monkey. Not a little girl, no, a fully grown one, who - I suspect - had fallen victim to his Seduction Dish.
BiL2B was understandably curious to see the Giraffe (aka ME), and we started chatting. One thing led to another and suddenly... the parents came through the door. To say that I was NOT ready for that would have been a contender for the understatement of the month.
Deep breath. And that was that. H2B's mum smelled like my own mum: Ysatis by Givenchy, and no-one could resist the infectious enthusiasm of his dad. My in-laws and I never looked back, and neither - fortunately- did Husband and I (otherwise, he probably wouldn't be Husband today, would he?). My mother-in-law-to-be (MiL2B) being as fabulously hospitable as my own mum, started putting on a lavish feast of 'just a few nibbles'. Now, THAT was the winner of "understatement of the month". I quickly learnt that in their home, that meant: smoked salmon, mortadella with home-dried tomatoes in olive oil, homemade liver paté, various saucissons, maybe a few herrings, some melon and prosciutto, lots and lots of cheeses and the infamous Mussel Salad. BiL2B proudly told me that the latter was his Food of Love. As in 'I prepare this, and the girl gets weak at the knees'.
The thing is, the dish looks as dull as dishwater, even when presented in my MiL2B's beautiful ceramics (which, by the way, are what each and every Madeleine is presented in on this blog, except for the Kim Chee, which is pictured in the bowl made with my own 2 clumsy hands). The ingredients list reads like a very uninspired shopping list, but the whole things just works. I’m not sure why BiL2B elected this as his Signature Luurve Dish, but I suspect it has something to do with: 1) you can always have the ingredients at hand, in your larder, in case of a Seduction Emergency and 2) it’s very easy and quick to make.
So here goes, Seduction Dish à la BiL2B:
1 can of drained mussels in brine
1 handful of garden peas (frozen, if you want the salad to cool
quickly, but definitely not canned – too mushy)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp curry powder (optional)
salt & lots of pepper
2 tbsp mayonnaise
Mix the 5 first ingredients well, before adding the mayonnaise. Leave to cool (or for the peas to defrost) and enjoy on a slice of nice crusty bread. You'll have
to trust BiL2B on this one, as I have never needed to seduce anyone since I met
I made this last night for the 1st time. Normally Husband always prepares it.
Memories of countless meals at my parents-in-law flooded my senses. Meals and happy times. Meals and not-so-happy times. The Food of Love, indeed. When Husband had to work in Norway for 2 years and I was unemployed, my parents 'entrusted' me to their new friends, my in-laws. And I really needed their support to get me through those years. When my father-in-law so suddenly passed away, it was my turn to be there for my new family. My MiL2B and I supported each other through many months, spent in her ceramist workshop, where she taught me the rudiments of her craft and we enjoyed a few moments away from our darker thoughts, lost in the magic of creation, learning, coaching and friendship. I miss that today, as we live far away in London now, but I want both MiL and BiL to know that I am still always there if they need me.
Ma belle mère est un fin cordon bleu (au moins ça :-D) aussi, mais beurre huile et crème sont ses ingrédients de base... :-)
Ma belle famille à moi est super aussi les frères, soeurs, mère et père sont adorables.
C'est quand même plus pratique quand tout le monde s'entend bien...non?!...
Quand à la cuisine de belle maman ça n'a rien d'extraordinaire. Ce n'est pas un fin cordon bleu et de toute façon je crois qu'elle n'aime pas ça !..Tant pis....je me rattrape chez ma môman !!
Toutes les semaines j'attends avec impatience les recettes souvenirs.
Bon...aller, toi aussi tu as droit à quelques vacances !!
A plus ma belle.
I really liked the post! Waiting for more.
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