It’s pretty bizarre to think that we’ve been in Normandy since March and now it’s May. It’s exciting though, because if things go as anticipated we’ll be able to go back to Paris on May 11th. I don’t know what the plan is beyond that, but at a minimum it’ll be good to be home. Until then we’ll continue to make the most out of our time in Normandy. Keeping with the spirit of this new month, this week’s Five Friday Finds from France are all happy and exciting. Or at least I think so!
May 1st: Fête du Travail and Fête de Muguet
May 1st is Labor Day (Fête du Travail) in France. It’s also the Fête du Muguet, where it’s customary to give lily of the valley flowers to loved ones as a good luck charm (porte bonheur). Typically you’ll find little sprigs of the flowers for sale in France on May 1st and the days leading up to to it.
Last year I didn’t buy any because we have some growing in the courtyard of my apartment. I talked to Romain’s grandmother this morning (in case you missed the week six update, Romain’s family is back in Paris now) and she told me where to find the muguet in the garden. I think we could all use a little porte bonheur right now!
Vogue Kitchen Week from Vogue Paris
This week has been Vogue Paris’ Vogue Kitchen Week. Seven chefs (real deal, Michelin-starred chefs…) from Paris restaurants are sharing seven simple recipes to make at home. And there are videos both on Instagram and YouTube. I want to make all seven of these recipes, but I think first up will be Simone Zanoni’s Cacio e Pepe. It looks so delicious and so simple. I’m also really looking forward to Simone Tondo’s Risotto Primavera on Sunday!
The Fireplace in Normandy
We’ve spent a lot of time indoors this week after we got some much needed rain. The fireplace here is really unique because there’s a window over it where there would normally be a wall. There’s a really good story behind it.
Sadly, Romain’s grandfather’s best friend was killed at the very end of World War II. After the war, he went to Brittany to tell his friend’s mother about her son. Their house had a fireplace with a window over it, and it was then that Romain’s grandfather decided he wanted the same one day. After buying and expanding this house, he added the fireplace with a window.
A First Ever Le Creuset Sale
For the first time ever, Le Creuset is having a sale where full-priced items are 20% off. I love all of their cast-iron cookware and think it’s a great investment because it lasts forever. They also have kitchen tools, different accessories, and tabletop items. I think it’s fun to mix and match different colors – on their website you can pick a color and it will give you suggestions for what pairs well together!
I have a round dutch oven in Paris and here in Normandy there are a few oval dutch ovens. You really can’t go wrong with anything Le Creuset. My favorite (and still on my wishlist – just need a bigger kitchen) is the ‘Bon Appétit’ Dutch Oven (it’s available on Amazon so it’s not a part of the sale).
Local Producers at the Grocery Store
Clearly I’m missing the marchés since I wrote about my favorite Paris market this week. While markets are still closed for now, there are a few local producers who are permitted to set up inside or just outside the grocery stores. Last weekend we saw a local strawberry farmer at Leclerc and yesterday we bought oysters and mussels from a lady who comes every Thursday to the little store in town.
Eating fresh, local products makes such a difference and you can really taste the difference. We’re lucky to have these great local producers during this time!
I hope you enjoyed the first May edition of Five Friday Finds from France and I hope everyone has a great weekend.
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