As 2007 gets ready to tiptoe out the back door, let me catch it by the sleeve and sit it down for a cup of tea and a chat, in remembrance of what the year has brought. It can then go back to packing its bags, and I to my New Year’s Eve preparations. (I have fifteen people coming to dinner and no game plan. Wish me luck.)
2007 has left me no time to idle: my cookbook came out in the spring, I went on a US book tour and on television to promote it, translated it into French, did more events in London and Paris, wrote another book on Paris restaurants and food shops, started a French version of Chocolate & Zucchini, created a silly side blog, and took on some freelance writing assignments.
It has been a good year indeed, but I look forward to 2008 even more: the French edition of my cookbook will be published by Marabout in February, my second book will come out in the US in April, I have a trip planned to Australia, and I’ve been nursing more projects and planting more seeds for the year to come — we’ll see what blooms!
And now, for the traditional list of personal awards:
Favorite newcomer in my recipe repertoire: the voluptuous muhammara.
Favorite DIY project: homemade tisane.
Favorite new toy: an ice cream maker.
Favorite new piece of cutlery: my folding Laguiole knife, which I whip out every chance I get.
Favorite new ingredient: agave syrup.
Favorite new cookbook: Moro East.
Favorite new twist on an ingredient: red quinoa.
Favorite new chance given to an old dish: petit salé aux lentilles.
Favorite technique: rubbing a seasoning paste on a roast.
Favorite new pairing: avocado + radish + smoked salt.
Favorite gastronomic meal: dinner at Olivier Roellinger’s in Cancale.
Favorite brush with a star: meeting Sadaharu Aoki.
Favorite escapist experience: a day in Alain Passard’s garden.
Favorite chocolate (and most expensive, too): Amedei’s Porcelana bar, bought in Rome. Contender: Patrick Roger’s 80% Equator bar.
Favorite pastry: as always, my mother’s tarte aux fraises. Contender: Nopa‘s rhubarb crostada.
Favorite addition to the Parisian landscape: the Vélib bike rental service.
Thank you for visiting C&Z in 2007, thank you for your support and comments throughout the year, and please accept my best wishes for 2008 — radiant health, glowing skin, rewarding interpersonal relationships, and successful kitchen adventures.
And if you care to share your own awards for 2007, I’m all ears!