Eats: Go to France without leaving home this Thanksgiving

Who among us can just jet off to France for Thanksgiving? (If you can, will you at least think about adopting me?)

You can still parlez-vous Francais at your dinner table.

patricia wellsHere are some great recipes I’m salivating over while making due with my perfectly respectable, but nothing fancy, chicken salad lunch.

What makes them so wonderfully French are things like duck as a change of pace for turkey (OK, I try not to eat duck, though I confess it’s awfully good).

Plus a Thai pumpkin soup with fish sauce from formerly French Vietnam.

There’s even a version of potato latkes — a cross between mashed potatoes and potato pancakes — perfect this year, since Thanksgiving coincides with the first day of Hanukkah. Using duck fat, which they seem to do an awful lot of in France.

J'aime le chocolat. Tout chocolat.

J’aime le chocolat. Tout chocolat.

And to top it off, that divine French chocolate, Valrhona, is an integral part of the dessert.

Being the chocoholic that I am, I know a little something about this brand: I use cocoa powder on top of fruit as a substitute for candy these days. (Finally got that weight thing under control, even without The Biggest Loser Resort this time, but that’s another story.)

I’ve taste-tested just about all of ’em, and Valrhona’s my fave. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find so you may have to order it online. Pricey but worth it, trust me.

Seems to me it’s not too late to get some of these ingredients and improvise a bit if you can’t. For instance —  I suspect other chocolate would work just as well.

When in doubt,  just wash it all with down with some French wine. Good suggestions from the book; though I suspect any will do just fine.


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