If you are my mother-in-law, stop reading now.

You don’t have to, but I am about to divulge the dinner menu for tomorrow night, which I’d prefer to surprise you with.

The rest of you may read on.

Having just read My Life in France, as well as taking Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home out of the library for the fifth or sixth time, I’ve become obsessed (or re-obsessed, more accurately) with learning to cook French food.

As a result, for tomorrow’s dinner, I have decided to tackle something I’ve never even had, never mind prepared for someone else: a cheese course.

I’m not gonna lie to you guys: I’m kind of a noodge about doing things The Right Way. (To wit: I just spent 10 minutes looking up “noodge” to be sure I was spelling and using it correctly.) So, I reseached the proper way to serve a cheese course for probably an hour before deciding on the combination of a cow’s milk cheese, a sheep’s milk, and a goat’s milk one, with a mild one, a funky one, and one somewhere in the middle — all from France. Specifically, I bought:

  1. Fleur Verte, a mild goat cheese
  2. Ossau Iraty, a sheep’s milk cheese to fill the mid-range
  3. Bleu d’Auvergne, a funky cow’s milk cheese I’ve eaten before

…all of which I plan to serve with a freshly baked baguette from FreshDirect.

As for the rest of the meal, I’m making that fantastic roast chicken, haricots vert with shallots, potatoes TBD (probably potatoes persillade), then the cheese course with the bread, then a flourless chocolate cake (made by FreshDirect) with créme Chantilly (made by me, because it’s pretty much just whipped cream).

I probably won’t have time to post anything about this dinner until sometime early next week, but I’ve got a camera full of fresh batteries waiting to record the whole thing.

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8 thoughts on “If you are my mother-in-law, stop reading now.

  1. I concur. It kept making me laugh so much, I had to stop reading it before bed — like when she said “Maircy Mon-soor!” on her first day in France, I cracked up so much my husband came in the room to see what was so funny.

  2. One of my favorite books in the last couple of years.

    There’s a photo of her somewhere wearing a bandeau top in this eensy little kitchen, kneading bread and looking out the window. I think the Julia issue of Gastronomica had it, which reminds me, I need to buy that back issue if it still exists…

    The dinner sounds great. I’ve never done a cheese course and will await your posting.

    Lilly spells it “Nooj”. It’s the name of one of the neighbor cats.

  3. The Zuni Cafe Cookbook has a lot on cheese courses, and the next step to your plan–pairing cheeses with fruit, nuts, etc.

  4. That sounds like a fantastic meal – especially the cheese course…mmm cheese…I miss you so. Sucks to be pregnant, I tells ya, it sucks!

    By the way, if you haven’t tried it, please take a taste of Prima Donna, an aged cow’s milk cheese from Holland. It’s very similar to aged Gouda.

    Hope we can meet at knitting soon!

  5. What a great idea! I never would have thought to do that for a guest/dinner party thing. Can’t wait to see how it all turns out.

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