Yesterday my mom and I hit the road and headed towards Aix-en-Provence.
She wanted to check out a bath and home store for work (the boutique she works for in Vancouver is interested in ordering their products), so we thought, why not go check it out in person? So we drove the 6 or 8 hours to Aix-en-Provence and were greeted by a city full of life.
Once we settled in our hotel we hit the high streets.
We shopped – or window shopped – and took in the flavours of this vibrant student town.
Once we’d worn ourselves out, we shacked up at the hotel with our aperitifs: fruit, vegetables, olives, breadsticks for my mama, and some local sparkling wine.
Afterwards we shared a meal at a nearby restaurant, stopped for a drink and very un-Irish Irish bar, and went back to the hotel to rest up! The next day, we set off early to get some work done!Not before a cafe au lait (or two).
The store was beautiful, and we found some great products that could sell well. I fell in love with the candles, linens and dishware.
Once we were done, we hit the road to get home before dark. We stopped in a few small towns, and had lunch in a city called Salon along the way.
We also stopped at a stand selling local products, where we were immediately offered some ice cold Muscat wine, “It will do you good,” said the woman, and I agreed. I left with wine, honey and fruit.
No matter how long you’re gone, it’s always nice to come home. We arrived just in time for a hot meal made by my dad. It was so good I have to share the recipe with you. I’m going to create my own version when I go home – but this recipe by Vikram Vij is pretty spectacular (and I’m told very easy).
- 7 ounces green onions (about 8 stalks)
- 1 cup plain yogurt, stirred
- 1 tablespoon Mexican chili powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- 2½ teaspoons salt
- 1 eggplant, skin on, in 1-inch cubes
- 2 cups chopped tomatoes (2 large)
- ½ cup canola oil
- Wash the green onions. Chop the white parts in rounds ¼-inch long. Remove and discard the hollow green parts. Chop the remaining solid green parts in rounds ¾-inch long. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine yogurt, chili powder, turmeric, cayenne and salt. Add the eggplant, tomatoes and onions and stir well to make sure the vegetables are well covered in the curry mixture.
- In a shallow, heavy pan, heat oil on medium-high for 45 seconds. Pour the curry into the pan and stir well. Sauté for about three minutes, reduce the heat to medium-low and cover. Simmer for another 10 minutes, stirring once halfway through the cooking. Turn off the heat and stir once more. Remove the lid if you are not going to serve the curry immediately, or the eggplant will become too mushy.
- To serve, ladle the curry into six bowls or plates. If serving with another curry, serve this one in a bowl, so that it doesn’t “run” on the plate.