Not in my right mind (French Fridays with Dorie: Provencal Vegetable Soup & Gateau Basque)

If anyone had told me a few years ago that I would be making a pot of soup in the middle of summer, I would have raised my right eyebrow and given them the stare down.

What person in their right mind makes a pot of soup when it's almost 90F?

Apparently, this one (whether or not I am in my right mind is debatable).

 However, when that soup is filled with vegetables from the peak of the summer's harvest - a summer squash, a handful of green beans, a young potato, a couple of small carrots simmered in broth - it doesn't seem quite so ridiculous. The recipe also called for a handful of pasta to be thrown in somewhere in the middle of all that simmering, but my experience with cooking pasta in soup has a somewhat checkered past. Instead, I opted to cook up a cup of black lentils (in lieu of both the pasta and the beans) in my rice cooker which I stirred in at the very end (and the lentils seemed like a more virtuous choice - and I need as much virtue as I can get in my life these days).

Now that I've caught up on old business... this week, the French Fridays with Dorie crew took a walk on the Basque side and made a cookie-cake. Or round pop tart. Or something like that. 

Two disks of thick tart-like dough were used to encompass a jam filling. If one likes jelly-filled cookies, one would like this. 

Personally, my favorite part about this one was the opportunity to take PacMan pictures. What can I say?

Life at Chez Cher continues to be a bit of a whirlwind - mostly work related. Runner Girl heads back to school to begin her Junior year of college in a couple of weeks. I swear, she just came home yesterday. Culinary Kid turns 19 today. I am pretty certain that she just turned 5 last year.

Sometimes, I wonder if it would help if I buried my head in the sand and just denied how quickly time is passing. What do you think? Does that sound like a plan?

Nah. Then I would miss out on all the good stuff...

Peace out.


This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie. The recipe for Provencal Vegetable Soup can be found here. The recipe for Gateau Basque can be found here.


  1. Yay for catching up and your Gâteau looks AMAZING. And yes, Pac Man...

  2. the PacMan reference! Both your dishes look terrific. Nick just got home after taking two summer school classes. We'll be sending him back in a couple weeks! Can you believe they'll be juniors???

  3. Love both your soup and pacman pie!

  4. Soup in the summer seems strange to us but they do make it all over the Mediterranean, they just don't eat it hot, room temp or cold.... even in the summer you have to cook up wilting vegetables, though I think a frittatta is best. You are just too young to have such grown ups for kids... hope they have a great year and just think less laundry and food to buy now.

  5. I immediately thought Pop Tart when I saw this recipe but never got to the Pac Man visual. Exactly right. Pac Man. I think most of us were surprised that we liked this soup so much. Of course, in the mountains, it is always cool at night. In fact the grasses have started to turn so we're probably looking at snow anytime soon. As for Pac Man, wasn't it delicious. I'm taking a poll on fillings. What jelly flavor did you use? Yeah, time flies. It only gets worse, not better.

  6. We loved both of these recipes too. Love the Pac Man reference, go 1980s. I agree with you that time flies. I am sending my baby to middle school this year and I swear he just started kindergarten last week. Thanks for the help with the preserved lemons. I will try my local specialty store.

  7. I used to be quite good at PacMan back in the day. You know, this reminded me of a pop tart too when I tasted it, but then I forgot when I sat down to write my post. Hope you have a great rest of your weekend.

  8. My daughter turns 21 next week, and I'm not sure how that happened or where time went.

    On to other things...soup, well that's going to have to be a make-up when our temps dip back into the 90's -it's just too hot and humid for soup now. I'm thinking of relocating to Alaska for the summers.

    You Gateau Basque looks great - cute Pac Man!

  9. I'd take a bowl of that soup! You're so right about PacMan--cute!

  10. LOL But do did you like the gateau and the soup??? : )

    I just put the old pacman on my phone - theres a great app for it and it might keep you up at night, so dont blame me if you go there lol - love that game!

    Love the lentil substitution! : )

  11. I so wish I had had a chance to make the soup. Right mind or not in the 90+ degrees. Ugh!! And all the veggies in the garden, too.
    The gateau was really nice, tho and yours looks just perfect.

  12. Decadent pop tart...jam-filled cookie. Your'e right! I did think that the gateau is quite nice. I used strawberry jam, but think it would be fun to try the less-sweet one with pastry cream.

    I'm glad you enjoyed the soup! I agree, counter-intuitive, but I did think it was delicious, worth making even in summer. Yours looks super!!

  13. Cher, wonderful soup and delicious gâteu basque, pacman-style!
    And, yes, time flies indeed - we only have about three weeks of summer vacation left before school starts again and then, out youngest will be starting her school career...
    Have a great Sunday and Happy belated Birthday to "Culinary Kid"!

  14. I am with you on the blur and for the record, you are my hero in how you keep up with it all. Yup - junior year starting for us too. How the heck ??? Anyhoo. Love the soup reaction - same in this household before and after the "Dorie food" was made (incredulius, then love) And I am not sure I will look at that gateau again without visions of pacman or pop tart in my head. Love it :)

  15. Time does fly, doesn't it? I've made soup a surprising number of times in the last couple of months. It's an odd choice for summer, but it's definitely growing on me.

  16. Darn, I missed my chance to take a Pac Man picture! My summer has been a whirlwind too, and I have to agree with you about time flying. My baby is now a ten year old!

  17. I think I owe everyone an apology for choosing a soup for midsummer - it was all about the vegetables, really!

    Your gateau looks wonderful! And I'm with you about burying one's head in the sand. Time is going too quickly these days.


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