Au Marché de Noël

If you visit the Place du Capitole de Toulouse during this time of the year, you will find yourself surrounded by various delicacies and produce of Southern France and also from the rest of the world.

You have the famous nougats and candied fruit stands

These candied fruits are oozing with sugary sweetness… gives me toothache just by looking at them
Nougats are extra-soft and chewy here in France, but also extra-expensive
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Titre de séjour

Ten thousand papers and many moons later, I finally got mytitre de séjour. For those who do not know, this is a card that entitles you to live and work for a certain period in France.

The maddening crowd at the prefecture the first time I went there to get the list of requirements for the titre de séjour

Before I started living here in France, I processed everything that I needed to be able to stay here for a long time with my husband back in Singapore. I got a visa from the embassy which is valid for a year’s stay. And upon my arrival here, I needed to undergo a medical exam and several not-so-useful seminars regarding the country’s history, social integration, and blah blah blah, to be able to get a stamp on my passport that says I have completed all the necessary requirements to be able to stay here for a year.

And now that this visa expired, I had to undergo another set of tiresome procedures to be able to get that titre de séjour that will allow me to stay in this country for yet another year, detailed as follows:

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Captive

Captive‘s poster on the door of a very inconspicuous
art cinema called, Utopia right next to Galeries Lafayette

i hate to admit it but the first time i’ve seen a Brillante Mendoza movie, called Serbis, i just didn’t like it.  perhaps it’s because lately i’ve come to prefer watching stupid comedy movies.  i had enough of the serious ones that usually lure you into believing there is something more to it than what it is.  only to find out in the end that it’s just another piece of pretentious bullshit.

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French cuisine neophyte

Since I have plenty of time in my hands, I have decided to take up a bit of cooking, mostly Filipino recipes.  I am proud to say that i have now mastered chicken adobo.  and was able to successfully accomplish lumpiang sariwa (fresh spring rolls) at the very first attempt. I was even able to serve it to real live guests, who appreciated it very much. I have this site to thank for, for all the easy-to-follow, honest-to-goodness authentic Filipino dishes.

My picture-perfect and mouth-wateringly palatable lumpiang sariwa;
I made the egg wrapper and the sweet sauce myself 😉
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Friday Food Feast

Hubby and I decided to go for crêpes today for lunch. We went to this restaurant called, Crep chignon, recommended by my hubby’s boss. It was quite nice. Especially since the last time I’ve eaten crepes was at Café Breton with friends at GB, Makati during my last visit to the Philippines!

Just look at these sumptuous treats that we had for lunch:

This is what I had for lunch: just a simple crêpe with jambon and egg inside, and some exotic salad with palm heart and pineapples on the side

This is what my hubby had for lunch: a simple salad, and crêpe with pork blood sausage and apples, and cider ice cream

Dessert in France is always delicious, no matter how simple they look!  This one is crêpe with bananas and hot chocolate, with chantilly on the side… yum!
Coffee in France is always espresso, unless you specify otherwise. I had a decaffeinated one here. You see the blocks of sugar on the side? Crafty, eh? But not very sanitary, if you’re finicky about other people touching those blocks before you do.

After the restaurant, we went to the grocery to stock up on food for the weekend, especially since we’re having some visitor friends of hubby, coming from Bretagne (Brittany, northwest of France). I remember back then, the first time hubby took me to the French grocery in Singapore, he went completely nuts. He went crazy and bought so much food. I think this grocery-craziness has rubbed off on me a bit. Especially since we moved to France. I mean, who wouldn’t go crazy with these:
French bread — according to hubby, this is real bread, the ones that scar your gums, not the soft ones we have back in Asia

Pastries and candies — the ones on top are made from the famous Toulouse Violettes, below are loads and loads of cakes and pies and tarts

Of course, a trip to the french grocery or market wouldn’t be quite complete without passing by a humongous selection of cheese

And if you ever go to the fresh open market, which they call marché, you will find fresher produce, and a lot more interesting and exotic stuff like rabbits and deer, etc. They’re usually open for only a few hours in the morning, though.

Food, I think is just about the best thing you can find in this country.