Christmas Reading

I hope that your holiday was a lovely one filled with 
The Joy of Giving.
And today finds you filled with

Ours was quiet and always richer as it is my grandson's birthday!  
A solid thirteen this year and fully engulfed in smelly feet, 
long showers and video games that destroy planets.
On the softer side, there is even 
a confessed girlfriend 
and a first kiss!  
Too soon?  
"Let's let her mother worry about it.", 
Mrs. Walsh.  The Goonies, 1985

His birthday cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes
So decadent with chocolate/chocolate chip and that insane frosting that
makes your teeth hurt but is Oh. So. Good. 
I sacrificed - phoned in the order, drove and picked it up.
All by my myself! 
If you have them in your area, definitely worth it 

OK - focus and back on-topic.....
Christmas Reading....
by John Baxter

A lovely story that lets you peek into a French family Festin de Noel 
and feel the love and dedication that goes into preparing
the revered holiday meal.

John Baxter, and Australian film critic finds himself, 
oddly enough, in Los Angeles. 
John meets French woman, Marie-Do.
John falls in love.
John moves to Paris.
John marries Marie-Do.
John prepares Christmas family dinner for 18
at the family chateau outside of Paris.

Not surprisingly,
the French take Christmas dinner quite seriously.
Nothing fast.
Nothing purchased ready-made 
except for the bread from the local boulangerie.
Several courses.
Loads of wine.
Every bite savored

Le Menu:
Mareindeer Clear Oysters
Roast Suckling Pig (Cracklins included)
Roast Potatoes
Carrot Pudding
Clochard Apple Sause
Vacherin Cheese
Pears Crassanes
Chateau les Eyquem Margaux, 1998and for dessert .... Fruits Brules.
And yes, the French take naps post fete.
Snoring included!
The bonuses are the travels taken to assemble the feast.
My favorite, a trip to Charente-Maritime for oysters.
Ah, to have a home there and maybe one with a gite.
Je Reve. 
But por moi, hold the oysters. 
Finished the book on Christmas Eve - Perfect Timing!

I enjoyed his gift of insights into French culture 
and my only regret is that I could not join them for the feast.

Our Christmas dinner was not suckling pig as in John's book
but Porcupine Meatballs at the request of the 
Birthday Boy-Man.
Here is the recipe as adapted from the original 
found in Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook, 
Porcupine Meatballs
My recipe is from the "Who Knows When" edition 
as that page is long gone.
They really are quite good and a family favorite
since my girls were young.
An easy prep and includes the must-have 
Midwest ingredient of a can of Campbell's condensed soup.
We served with mashed potatoes and 
NO vegetables.
Again as requested by the Boy-Man.

Now we march on to yet another family birthday Wednesday,
and then mine.
 I have begun my New Year Resolution list.
Have you?

xx from Moonlight Lane