I’ve spent eight years waiting for today. I’m in Angers, the small Loire Valley town where I studied abroad, sleeping in the same bed I occupied all of those years ago. Key differences: my French has noticeably declined; Ben is sharing the bed with me.
Though Ben and I have a variety of fun side trips planning during our four weeks in France, our two days in Angers are the ones I have spent the most time anticipating. I cannot reflect back on the semester I spent in France without remembering two of the most dynamic, caring individuals I’ve been blessed to know, my host parents Marcel and Raymonde.
In addition helping me vastly improve my French, teaching me to make crepes, and taking me on fun side trips to area vineyards and chateaux, Marcel and Raymonde inspired me with their lives. Although retired, they are two of the most active and well-traveled individuals I have ever met. They take multi-day bicycle trips, Raymonde writes, Marcel studies English, and in the past calendar year have or will travel to the U.S., China (where the photo above was taken), and England. I aspire to be as vibrant and vigorous as they are one day.
We fell out of contact over the years, but last fall, I was delighted to hear a familiar French tone on my voicemail—Marcel still had my cell phone and called to say hi, leaving me his contact information. A few life update emails later, and Marcel and Raymonde were delighted to find out that not only had I’d gotten married, but the new man and I would be in France. They quickly invited us to stay with them, and now months later, I’m eagerly anticipating the moment when I can introduce three people who have meant the world to me in different ways to one another.
We’ll be spending two days in Angers, and I can’t wait to rediscover my favorite spots with Ben and my host parents, the most critical of which is my favorite patisserie. I have glowing memories of a certain decadent pain au chocolat aux amandes (chocolate almond croissant), and I won’t stop walking the city until I find it!
While I’m busy getting lost on my déjà-vu laden pastry hunt, I’m leaving you with a super-summer recipe from a fantastic guest poster. To keep the supply of fresh content in full force while Ben and I are abroad, several of my wonderful blogging friends are sharing their recipes and writing here. Today’s guest post is from the fabulous Katie of Katie’s Cucina, who you may remember from this recipe for Double Decker Dark Chocolate Vanilla Bean Pudding. A fellow foodie, avid traveler, and lover of kitchen experimentation, Katie and I are kindred spirits separated by a few thousand miles. I mean, how can you not love a girl who comes up with something like this?
Here is Katie to share her recipe for Corn Avocado and Tomato Salad. Take it away lady!
Hi! I’m Katie from the food blog Katie’s Cucina. I am a new mom and have a passion for cooking! I have no classical culinary training. Everything I’ve learned has been from my mom, watching cooking shows, and good ‘ol trial and error. Katie’s Cucina is a place where I share my love for food – developing and cooking mouthwatering recipes weekly, baking indulgent desserts, and sharing foodie travels from coast to coast. A few of my favorite recipes I like to make on a regular basis are: Lemon Bruschetta Pasta with Grilled Chicken, Crock Pot Jambalya, Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken Tacos, and Oven Roasted Cherry Tomatoes.
Today, I’m sharing a perfect light salad for summer, my recipe for Corn, Avocado, and Tomato Salad. I love Mexican food and am always creating new recipes. This recipe was created after I was looking for a quick dinner side dish while on maternity leave. I still wasn’t driving yet, and I had limited food on hand. I had 3 ears of leftover corn sitting in the refrigerator and I knew I wanted and needed to use them up. I almost always have grape tomatoes and avocados on hand.
My husband and I instantly fell in love with this salad. This Corn, Avocado, and Tomato Salad is perfect eating as a side dish or even scooping up with tortilla chips and eating it as a dip!
Corn Avocado and Tomato Salad
- 3 corn cobs, grilled
- 1 cup grape tomatoes (about half a pint)
- 1 avocado
- 1 tablespoon cilantro Diced
- 1/2 lime Juiced
- 1/8 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- On a cutting board, remove the corn off the cob. Place in a large bowl. Then halve the grape tomatoes and dice the avocados and place those in the bowl.
- Sprinkle cilantro, lime juice, cumin, chili powder and salt. Gently fold the salad so that all the spices marry together. Serve immediately.
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