Hello lovely readers!
Although you are all far too polite and sweet-natured to write this I am aware that I have a tendency to rabbit on in my posts. Today a nasty sore throat is making me less talkative than usual so, with a little luck, there will be more pictures and less words. Hurrah!
We are halfway through our school holidays and may I just say how much I LOVE the February holidays? It's the last chance we have to snuggle inside and craft, read, and bake before the glorious spring weather pulls us outside. This week the skies have been a brilliant blue and the grass sparkling with frost. The sun did coax us out on a few occasions for a brisk walk along the Loire. Our dog, Gaspard, made us chortle with his undiscerning overtures to each and every dog and owner who would cross his path. He is a little embarrassing at times but very adorable too, thankfully. Today there have been a few flurries of snow and Mickaël and Tristan have headed off to Le Mans to change the tyres and give a little attention and love to our 1992 Jaguar Sovereign with the help of a vintage car specialist friend. A few days ago Tristan and I went to Tours to have a drink together, buy macarons, watch the ongoing work on the new tramway, and most importantly to purchase a few classical music recordings with his birthday money because my son simply adores being lulled to sleep with guitar or harp music. Right now I am listening to one of the three cds we chose together: Le Salon de Musique de Marie-Antoinette. I strongly recommend it. It is beautiful and calming; just right for Tristan.
There has been a little quick and delightful knitting, a repeat performance of this pattern. which I have named this time:
I love this little sweetheart of mine for being courageous in sub-zero temperatures and showing off that smile (we call it The Boudazin Smile) uncannily similar to her father's and grand-father's!
The pattern is Karen Borrel's scrumptious Bulle, the yarn, found in my stash, is Quince & Co.'s Lark (so easily purchased and reasonably priced) in the Carrie's Yellow colourway. The model is my very own :-)
My Ravelry notes are here.
There has been a batch of Lemon Curd whisked up this week too. I love French Tarte au Citron but Lemon Curd is so quintessentially British to me and conjures happy childhood memories. I have given up butter and chocolate for Lent - goodness knows how long that will last - but I have found this amazing French Lemon Curd recipe which has no butter in it. It is made in minutes, tastes sublimely tart and, quite honestly, I don't think it will last for long in this household!
Crème de Citron
You will need:
1 dessert spoonful of cornstarch
Wash and zest the lemons (the recipe suggests 2 lemons but I recklessly zested all 4 with wonderful results) and place the zest and juice from all 4 lemons in a saucepan with the sugar and cornstarch. Stir whilst heating gently. Wisk the eggs and add to the warmed ingredients in the pan and, over high heat, stir continuously until the lemon curd thickens. It took me about 5 minutes. Pour into a sterilized glass jar.
It tastes sublime!
May I introduce you to a little spring bunny?
Along the banks of the river Loire I have caught glimpses of delicate pink blossom bursting timidly forth on windswept trees which have inspired me to create Mademoiselle Blossom, a breath of spring air! Pink blossom like frosting on a girl's birthday cake; a celebration of sorts. She is a gentle and refined little lady, both delicate and pale, who relishes French patisserie such as macarons. The ones in the picture are rose and chocolate, vanilla, and honey with lemon.
I was fully intending to put her up here shortly after placing her on my shop shelves but I'm afraid to say she has just been purchased as I was writing the opening paragraphs to this post; I'm so sorry! Perhaps it might be a good idea, if you are interested, to pop over to Madame Millefeuilles, my shop, or again, Madame Millefeuilles, my facebook page to stay informed of newly created hares? (I am starting up on some new designs for the shop which I am most excited about). I prefer keeping this space of mine relatively shop talk free!
I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend dear friends. It is always a pleasure to read your comments and your thoughtful emails. Thank you so much!
ps Just as talkative as ever, right? :-)