Friday, January 6, 2012


Oh yes, the celebrations haven't finished here in France! In our family we link the Epiphany King Cakes to our own celebrations - the anniversary of our arrival in this country. Thank you for all your comments on my 'heart-felt' post below - I feel very privileged that I have friends in blogging who will read what I have to say and take the time to respond. So, if you've read the post below, you know that our arrival in France was not without incident, and that, although the good things (like these gateaux des rois) started straight away, there were plenty of hard things to deal with for a number of years. As you clearly understood, looking at your comments, I don't regret our move here one little bit, even though it was difficult. And the uncomfortable process of 'breaking' has proved to be rewarded one-hundred times over, so much so that I'm not so scared of difficult times any more. And yes, I can speak French now - we had a meal with two of Ben's colleagues last night and through it I was thinking: "I am chatting in French, I wish my blogging friends could see me!" French is a language of beauty and perfection, and my French is neither beautiful nor perfect, but it does work.So tonight is Twelfth Night ('or what you will') and we'll be taking down our fairly low-key Christmas decorations. Then I'm going to celebrate Epiphany this weekend by baking my very-first galette des rois. I've found a recipe here in English (American cups or metric measurements) if you'd like to join me! And for those of you who read French or are good at code-breaking (I know there are a few readers in both categories!), here is a recipe for our more local couronne des rois, which is a bread-based delight, as pictured at the top of my post. I'll let you know how we get on - please tell me if you have a go too!


marigold jam said...

I've just read both posts Floss and how I felt for you in those early days - I can remember sitting crying when we first arrived in France and thinking that lovely though it was it wasn't ever going to be "home" so I know how difficult those first days can be!! I also remember those gateaux des rois and how I wondered how I could possibly eat another portion as everyone was so keen to offer them when we visited! I still have a couple of the little fevres as keepsakes. I am so glad that you are so well settled now - I wonder if we would have settled better if we had made the move when we were younger but as you know I don't regret those few years and I am in constant touch with my French friends and a few of the English ones too but am now back in my beloved West Country and wouldn't change anything for the world!!

Serenata said...

Sorry haven't been commenting much recently Floss, have been reading your lovely and interesting posts, but brain is still rather befuddled at the moment and I'm finding it difficult to concentrate on writing and commenting.

Enjoy your baking in the weekend.

Alix said...

Sorry to have missed your heartfelt post when it was first up - I'm trying hard to catch up with all the blog post I missed over the holidays! It was very interesting to read, and I admire you for getting through all the things I would balk at. Lucky you to be enjoying galette des rois - I will be singing 'J'aime la galette' repeatedly with the children at school next week and it will be making me drool. But as you've pricked my memory, and my husband is in France at the moment, I may just ask him to bring me one back!

Sheila said...

Enjoy baking this weekend, im sure it'll turn out great. I had to have a little look as i didnt actually know what you'd be baking! I do now! We're taking our decorations down now as i like the tradition too.
I have just read the post below too. You were very brave, and i love what you said in this post. You can speak French, you have made it, and it works. You are miles better than loads of people who take languages up and then drop them like a hot tattie-ME!
Im glad that things have really changed, and that you see your changes and are happier.

A Trifle Rushed said...

I'm going to bookmark the recipe, thanks for it. We had our galette des rois a little early, just before we left Brittany, when we were having aperitifs with neighbours, my little girl won the feve so wore the crown!
Happy New Year, Jude x

Serendipitychild said...

Happy new year, and thanks for your lovely comment on my blog. I am now the proud owner of a second hand pushchair/pram bought from Hormones are still running wild! Cried yesterday after buying the pushchair because it was so overwhelming!

Olga said...

Dear Floss! All the best to you in 2012! Let this year be filled with love and let it be the best year yet.

I find it so strange the British are taking down the Christmas decorations so soon... My Christmas tree is definitely staying for a couple of more weeks! :)

A garden just outside Venice said...

Even if holidays are now over, I wish you and your family a very happy New Year!
Michela x

Carole said...

Well this year I wanted to make my frangipane galette again, and we were invited at a neighbour's place... and we had some there. So we decided that would do for this year and next year I'll try the brioche version with the fruits confits, whatever the family says.
It was most interesting to read your post about coming to France, lots of people do that in our neck of the woods now, but very few end up speaking French, so you deserve praise !