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I’ve been sick with pneumonia and really, really needed an escape hatch to somewhere else. Author Elizabeth Bard gave me Lunch in Paris: A Love Story with Recipes.
Love After Food at Chartier
In Chapter 1, Elizabeth’s first lunch with a man named Gwendal takes place at Chartier, an informal bistro serving the best of meals since 1896. I gasped with delight because I, too, had been at that very restaurant with the man I loved (and later married).
Elizabeth, the American journalist, falls in love with her tap-dancing, cinema-loving, computer science PhD Frenchman and they hurriedly plan a July 2003 wedding.
Food, of course, plays a part. Elizabeth wants a “croquembouche,” a pyramid of cream puffs held together with praline for her wedding cake. Gwendal insists it’s “cheesy.” But they surmount the pitfalls of planning two weddings, obtaining an apartment with heat in Paris, making friends, and the illness and death of her new father-in-law.
Mmmmm, the Food . . .
The text is interspersed with recipes that seem do-able. Plus, Elizabeth adds endearing notes, such as Yogurt Cake is the first cake her husband Gwendal learned to bake. I’m also quite pleased by the well-composed 8 page index to recipes,
Food Blog Alert
If, like me, you’re intrigued by Elizabeth’s new life as an American expatriate, you’ll find charm in her food blog Elizabeth Bard. It has recipes, photos of her young son, and even unexpected delights like Fred Astaire dancing to Michael Jackson, courtesy of her cinema-loving husband..
For my colleague DeAnn's review of the book and a few more french recommendations, read her Vive la France blog.
As a member of two book clubs, Karen Y. reads frantically, looking for structure, meaning and the author's intent. Materials related to Japan, food, arts and crafts, travel, and style attract her like a magnet.