I snapped this photo in Rochegude, while running early to a luncheon.* Those sunny shutters remind me of our hostesse's character. More about le repas in today's story column.

*(By the way, while it is most-often French words that bestill a Francophile's heart, have you ever let yourself linger over the word
"luncheon"? It is quite delightful in its own right, n'est pas?)

*     *     *

I never had an imaginary friend as a child, though I have always had imaginary words. Please allow me to introduce you to the latest... (For those of you who do not want to play along, who would rather take from these posts "useful words only!," then you'll find plenty in the "Vocabulary" section below. Now, back to make-believing and to today's missive...)

déjouper (day-zhoo-pay) noun, masculine

    : a typical French meal that begins, roughly, around Sunday lunchtime (1:30 p.m.) and ends, roughly, around American dinnertime (5:30 pm)

[from "déjeuner" (lunch) and "souper" (dinner)]

Note: for those smartypants types, who're sure to write in: No, "déjouper" does not mean, even in imagined vocabulary, "to take off one's skirt"!

I learned several new words yesterday, at Aurore and Alain's, where we had Sunday "lunch" (or--sort of like the English "brunch"--might "déjouper" be a more descriptive word? After all, the meal began at lunchtime [déjeuner] and ended at the dinner hour [souper!]).

Wearing a chef's tablier,* Alain greeted us at the porte-fenêtre,* which leads to the kitchen, where his velouté de champignons* reeled us in by our cold noses. Beyond the soup, a massive marmite* took up the remaining three burners, allowing a chasseur's* civet* to simmer.

Jean-Marc and I arrived embarrassingly early, so when Aurore appeared from the salle de bains* I threw out a pair of helping hands and asked for directions.
"Go and get the goo-zhers and we'll reheat them," she offered. I wasn't sure what goo-zhers were, but followed her pointed finger which led me to a charming checkered cloth above a table laden with colorful apéritifs. By deduction (it couldn't be the radishes or the Kiri*-stuffed celery... ), I discovered the puff pastries ("gougères"*).

"Je les ai ratées!"* Aurore despaired. Soon the guests arrived, putting an end to any self-doubting. "The gougères look fine," neighbor Laetitia assured her and, there and then, I decided that gougères weren't some exotic apéro, but familiar fare for the French.

More invités* arrived, some carrying cooking contraptions, including a Cocotte Minute* and a couple of vegetable mills. Inside the trusty minute cooker, 30 potatoes awaited mashing à la Française (enter a mashed potato's best friend: la moulinette!* Note: You have not tasted fluffy mashed potatoes until you have tasted them from the other end of a vegetable mill!).

DSC_0247 Aurore studied the plan de table* and, before long, all twelve of us were seated, rust-colored tulips tempering the stark white tablecloth and the embroidered napkins behind which we settled. After the amuse-bouche* (Alain's mushroom soup), followed by a marinated salad trio (carottes râpées,* choux rouge râpé,* and chickpeas...), two of the guests jumped up and disappeared into the cuisine* followed by our hosts, one of whom signaled for me to follow suit....

Photo: Aurore (second to left), before she traded places with Christine (second to right). Click on photos to enlarge images.

DSC_0251 That is when I learned that it takes four Frenchmen to make mashed potatoes! I watched as Christine and Gilles, local doctors, churned their moulinettes. Aurore systematically fed the steamed potatoes into the contraptions (two mills were needed). Alain's presence was accounted for under "moral support".

The potatoes, now mashed (and still hot!), were gently turned in on themselves after a truffled butter* was added to them. Within minutes, we were back at the table eating the still-piping hot purée de pommes de terre* alongside the chasseur's civet. The chasseur in question, David, sat to my right, looking pleased with chef Alain's flair... for cooking the former's hare.

DSC_0252 After the fourth course (a platter of cheese), out came those French floating islands or "îles flottantes"--this in a meringue-capped sea of crème anglaise!* I wish I could report that we eventually floated home, weightless as those whipped egg whites. Instead, we left, heavy as the potatoes... before they met their fate at the médecins'* mill.


Comments, corrections, or stories of your own--are always welcome in the comments box. Thanks!

La Bonne Cuisine de Madame E. Saint-Ange: The Original Companion for French Home Cooking

Get yourself a moulinette and discover mashed potatoes, as if for the first time!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~French Vocabulary~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
le tablier
(m) = apron; la porte-fenêtre (f) ("door-window) = French window; le champignon (m) = mushroom; la marmite (f) = pot; le chasseur (m) = hunter; le civet (m) = stew; la salle de bain(s) = bathroom; Kiri = brand of creamy cheese; je les ai ratées! = I made a mess of them!; la gougère** (f) (recipe follows) = gruyère-based puff pastry; un invité (une invitée) = guest; la Cocotte Minute (R) = pressure cooker; la moulinette (f) = vegetable mill; le plan (m) de table = table map (placements); l'amuse-bouche (m) (also "amuse-gueule") = appetizer, snack; la carotte (f) râpée = grated carrot; le chou rouge (m) râpé = shredded red cabbage; la cuisine (f) = kitchen; truffled butter** (recipe follows); la purée (f) de pommes de terre = mashed potatoes; crème anglaise ("English cream") = "a custard sauce flavored with vanilla or sometimes with rum, orange liqueur, kirsch, etc." --Dictionary.com;  le médecin (m) = doctor, physician

**Christine's Truffled Butter (easy!): put one truffle--alongside one or two sticks of butter--into a plastic container. Let the truffle infuse the butter overnight. Cut the truffle in half. Use one half, chopped, for the potato purée mixture, add the other half to the boiling water (when first cooking the
potatoes.... Do not discard this half, but add it to the purée, along with the other, and the truffled butter).

Here is a recipe for gougères in the New York Times:
4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter
½ teaspoon salt
1½ cups (about 7 ounces) all-purpose flour
3 eggs
1 cup freshly grated Emmenthal, Gruyère, Cantal or Cheddar cheese
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or other hard cheese.

For instructions, click here:

A Message from KristiOngoing support from readers like you keeps me writing and publishing this free language journal each week. If you find joy or value in these stories and would like to keep this site going, donating today will help so much. Thank you for being a part of this community and helping me to maintain this site and its newsletter.

Ways to contribute:
1.Zelle®, The best way to donate and there are no transaction fees. Zelle to [email protected]

2.Paypal or credit card
Or purchase my book for a friend and so help them discover this free weekly journal.
For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


The meal sounds wonderful (even to someone who eats no meat or poultry). I adore iles flottantes!

I have been told that when I was two to three years old, I had three imaginary friends who were called -- inexplicably -- Auntie Buddha, Auntie Dee Dee, and Mr. Bitney. My parents had no idea where the names came from. Mostly I talked to and about my friends, but occasionally one or other of my parents would be told not to sit on a particular chair because Mr. Bitney was already sitting on it, or to set another place at the table for Auntie Dee Dee. We were firm friends for almost a year, I am told, and then the other three left our house as mysteriously and suddenly as they had arrived.

I remember absolutely nothing of all this!

Franklin Levin

Ah! La moulinette, here it is a Foley Food Mill. This bizarre utensil comes out at our house when it is time to make pie out of the hallowe'en jack-o-lantern. The thought of using it to pulverize potatoes never occured to me. I will have to give that a try. If I can just find the food mill. I didn't think I would need it until next October.


Only the French could sit still long enough, and have the patience, to "desouper"! Americans are too busy. When one is with friends and is sharing company as well as food, a meal could last 4 hours, but normally, much less time. It's too bad, as we are forgetting how to "deguster" our food (a term I learned from a French family years ago).


My sister received a pressure cooker for Christmas this year and reports it has revolutionized her cooking! I'm tickled to learn its French name is Cocotte Minute! Now I suspect I'll have to buy one, too...

I'd always thought the civet was a kind of wild cat. I just googled it, and find it is also a stew. The civet is actually related to the mongoose, and has a distinctive odor. So you could be eating a stew of mongoose, as in le civet de civet!


Please tell your hosts that their home is beautiful and I especially liked her little tulip arrangements -- Aurore is obviously a talented hostess!


What a beautiful table! Were you celebrating something special or simply the joy of all being friends? I just finished reading a book called "Provencal Cooking" by Mary Ann Caws. Your dejouper reminds me of the lovely langourous meals she describes from her little cabanon east of Carpentras.


I love these photos of a beautiful table, lovely home, and a warm occasion. Thank you for often giving us glimpses into French homes and lives, including of course your own.....as well as expanding our French vocabulary!


I see a lovely Chateauneuf du Pape on the table and I am trying to find the Domaine Rouge-Bleu somewhere........aaaaaaahhhhh, my Frenchman and I wish I were there sharing table and talk!

June Cosgrove

Dear Kristin-So Generous That your friends as well as you, let us in to their homes and share recipes and photos of their fridge doors and table settings and a little peeping into their home. My heart swells at having met you and your family in Phoenix.Are truffles canned in jars good enough to use in potatoe receipe that you shared? June at Superstition Mt.

vicki archer

I have just discovered your delightful blog and thoroughly enjoyed your story (mouth watering as I write) of what sounds like a very fun dinner. xv

Katy George

what a delightful report on a lovely variation of the french national sport, the dinner party!


Un nouveau mot pour moi...Dejouper?...Jamais entendu, jamais utilisé..Peut preter a confusion...On pourrait dejouper ensemble...Ressemble trop a...dejuper ensemble...Too risqué!
Une expression amusante leading to a pun (bad)
J'ai l'estomac dans les talons= Je suis affamé.
Quelqu'un qui avait trés faim avait mangé un steak de cheval et il disait:
J'avais l'estomac dans les talons, maintenant j'ai l'etalon ( the stud) dans l'estomac.

Connie Jones

The description of the "dejouper" warmed me on this foggy, cool winter day in the San Juan Islands of WA.

A question for other francophiles/francophones. I have had an on-going discussion about whether it is proper to say "amuse-bouche" or "amuse-gueule" to describe small appetizers. I have been told that the French use the latter while the Americans prefer "amuse-bouche." However it appears that the French at this meal used "amuse-bouche". Comments/opinions anyone?


I remember the first SEB pressure cooker that appeared in France in the early fifties. My maternal grandmother only believed in her “marmites”! My father was more enthusiastic than my mother about such a revolutionary piece of equipment called … “cocotte-minute” and he bought one!
At home, in England, a year ago, I replaced my 30 yr old Swiss pressure cooker (KUHN RIKON) with a TEFAL one – easy to find the whole Tefal range here.

I had a potato masher (bought in England) to make mashed potato, and a liquidiser to transform cooked veg into soup. I still have them but, some years ago, at the end of a pleasant stay in France, I felt I ought to have “un moulin à légumes”. It's “un moulin” (= a mill) and so, you keep turning the handle round and round to make it work, no need of electricity. It's what my mother and her mother would have always used when transforming cooked vegetables into soup (→ the process being called: “passer” la soupe, one can understand why a vegetable mill is also called “un passe-légumes”). Not common in England, so, as there was a big choice in France at the time, and I had time to shop around, I took advantage of the situation. I got tempted, bought one, and have been delighted with my “moulin à légumes” ever since.
If you put the right “grille” (disc), the same “moulin à légumes” mashes very finely the boiled potatoes you put in. Keep turning the handle... exactly as the people do on the photo in the kitchen, and you get such a marvellous "purée de pommes de terre"! I totally agree with your remark, Kristin, about the fluffiness of the result!

Reading about the crudités that followed your mushroom soup, I just realised the French say [chou “râpé”] (grated) for ['shredded' cabbage]. Hard to believe in the culinary vocabulary there are 2 English words, grated and shredded, for only one -“râpé”- in French!
At home, everyone loves “carottes râpées”, with dressing and chopped parsley. I don't mind grating carrots by hand with my ordinary stainless steel grater, (a grater = une râpe) but the result is a bit coarse and the grater no longer as sharp as it should be. The MOULINEX "moulinette mouli-julienne", that ancient contraption on 3 legs, and with 3 different discs - is a different tool from the “moulin à légumes”. It used to grate carrots and celeriac ever so finely! Just dreaming about it as I don't have one and my electric veg grater (I think it was a Moulinex too) expired a long time ago. Never mind, we can still eat a lot of “carottes râpées”.

Mille mercis Kristin for your lovely photos. Brilliant yellow shutters against the stone walls! The colourful tulips, beautifully presented on the white tablecloth are gorgeous! “Merveilleux coup d'oeil” that makes us feel among the guests... Thanks for sharing! Oh! the busy and friendly 'mashing scene' in the kitchen looks great!

So, after hours round the table and a wonderful succession of dishes, the meal felt like a “déjeuner-souper”, 2 meals in one! Bravo Kristin for the creation of a funny & fancy word showing humour and imagination! I don't think I ever had any imaginary friend... and can't remember creating any imaginary word... may be an imaginary 'world', at some time or other. Charlie the Mouse was an imaginary character our son invented when he was 11. It ended up in a lovely story he wrote at the time, with several chapters. I am so pleased to have kept it.


Thank you so much for this note today. I was also pleased to remember some of the French dishes and now know as well as the description on how to prepare and cooking utensils---Yeah! But I am most grateful to you for telling us about this warm and wonderful "brunch". My family does this "dejeuner-souper" as do some of my friends. Since relocating to New Mexico, i miss those soirees but then NM with its Spanish, Mexican and Indian cultures is also known for similar soirees. But to relive your "brunch" just warmed my heart. It also made me think of hosting something myself. Thank you so much for this sunshine and the yellow shutters on this cold and dreary winter day! It was comforting to see the other stories on imaginary friends--my daughter and sister had them.


What an enjoyable entry!

In Belgium where I grew up we sometimes had a "goûte-soupe" on the weekend, a combination of that great institution, "le goûter" et "souper" which is the Belgian name for dinner. It usually consisted of a light dish like a soup or an omelette, some fruit or /and vegetables, and some nice Belgian baked goods. We loved it!


To Connie Jones re the "Amuse-bouche" or "Amuse-gueule" quandary, I was actually corrected by the waiter at a restaurant once and told that "nice people" said "amuse-bouche." I blushed, of course.... and have tended to opt for the former ever since.

And my thanks to you, too, Kristin, for sharing this lovely déjouper, a reminder of my favorite moments in France and also Croatia ---long lingering meals and conversation with friends --- outdoors or around a fire. Nothing better.

By the way "luncheons" in the South are often dressy affairs with iced tea and linens. Maybe it's my age. I prefer the casualness of yours.

Bonne journée!


Our portal is ready to give you the information about Here we have few themed pictures:
Didn’t hear about ? Enter into search engines these request urgently and do not miss possibility to change your life in a good way. Besides that, only at our web-site you can find such detailed pictures:
We will tell and show you all about , with pleasure Here we have few themed pictures:
Our portal is best in the field of work and knowledge about . More details in those pictures:
Events which excited society: in use has changed our life. Also pictures:
Do you have a desire to change your life? Find us, having typed in the search engine . Those images will help you to understand:
We are confident that on our portal you will find all information about
Do not try to deceive yourself! Without knowledge of it will be difficult for you to increase the size of the purse. See it in details:
- you will learn it on our portal. See it in details:
You won't believe, but on our site you can learn everything even about , see it on the following pictures:

get instant cheap car insurance quotes
auto site
auto site
memorial day car sales
auto site
ford explorer seat lumbar parts
discount honda auto parts
auto site
auto site
national auto finance company
There is a desire to master new horizons. You will find the most actual information about, so-called , at this server. Here we have few themed pictures:
Information about and is stored in archive of our site. It becomes more clearly on the pictures:
Useful materials connected on ,, themes are collected on our portal Also pictures:
Our site will provide you with all necessary data in sphere of . See it in details:
On our site you can receive the full information about working with . Those images will help you to understand:
In the work connected with you can’t do anything without authentic and actual information: our site is necessary for you!
Now you can learn much about , but so many unique facts you will find only at our site! And also pictures:
On our site the exhaustive information on the themes connected with is presented your attention. More details in those pictures:
If you are interesting in questions with - , transit on our site under the link … It becomes more clearly on the pictures:
Who did not hear about the prospects of such themes, like ? Here we have few themed pictures:

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)