That means having a dinner with actual French people here. In case you wonder, yes, most French people are passionate about their food, so the gauntlet has been laid.
Our first step was to decide on the menu, and we chose chicken cordon bleu.
I wanted something that could be in the oven while we drink our apertifs and then eat our starter.
We stopped at the butcher (he's closed on Thursdays) and told him we wanted chicken breasts. Earl added that it was for cordon bleu, so the butcher carefully sliced each chicken breast in half so it can be easily filled with the ham and cheese that go inside.
There were other people waiting in line, but that did not rush the butcher.
Next we ordered the ham, and he revved up the meat slicer to cut large "tranches" of ham.
This morning, we went to the grocery to buy the other ingredients we needed, including wine.
I assumed we would serve white wine with chicken, but I was wrong.
As we stood in the wine aisle, I eventually went to the special price section and asked some women working at the store which wine I should choose. They directed me to the wine man who was putting bottles on a shelf.
He accompanied me back to the wine aisle and suggested a Cote du Rhone and picked up a bottle of wine.
|The bottle picked out by the wine man at the grocery|
"Yes," he confirmed.
If I had consulted the English-speaking online community, they would have recommended a chardonnay, but I'll take the advice of the French wine drinkers every time.
Since I had asked for his recommendation, I prepared for him to choose an expensive bottle of wine.
Once he handed it over with the advice to open the bottle at least an hour before it needs to be served, I looked at the shelf. I needed at least two bottles of wine.
The cost: 4,90 Euros. That's about $5.65 in US dollars.
He could have recommended a much more expensive wine, but, another passion for most French, is finding the correct, good wine with meals.
I splurged and threw in a nearly $10 bottle of dessert wine to go with our apple crumb pie.
After all, even French friends needs a little Americana when they come to dinner