'Tis the season for forgetting everything but sweets and twinkling lights. I have been cooking very little the last few months. I've baked even less. But with the holidays in full swing, I consumed more than my fair share.
My friend Drew was recently in Paris. When he asked what I wanted from France, I said mustard and chocolate. And I happened to mention that if I was ever in Paris, I would want to visit Denise Acabo's chocolate shop, A l'Etoile d'Or. Drew brought me a wonderful, truly amazing dark and milk chocolate layered Jour et nuit Bernachon bar - only available at their shop in Lyon or from A l'Etoile d'Or in Paris. Exclusive. I have been savoring it, but definitely don't want it to go bad. My apartment is usually only 60°F, so it will last a while longer... My other early Christmas present was a lovely pot of dijon mustard. And I have put it to use. Mostly with carrots. I have sautéed carrots and added dijon - three times in the past few weeks. A little bit of lemon would be nice at the end. Maybe on the fourth time around.
I will share some holiday food photos, including my first attempt at making my aunt's almond roca recipe. The recipe was written on an old piece of paper, fading and spotted with oil, missing a few words here and there. Even without a candy thermometer, it worked out fine. Chopping the almonds was the hardest part. Sweets and twinkling lights. I find myself wishing I could have them all year long. But I do remember how silly Christmas lights look in August. And peppermint bark would seem out of place. But right now they are just right.