La Paix des Choses Sauvages , Wendell Berry, and Thoughts on The US Election Results
Gigot: a surprise from our neighbor

Fried Eggs in French, a Maman Poule, and a visit from Max

The French eat quail eggs (les oeufs de caille)... but do they eat fried eggs? Read on...

TODAY'S WORD: un oeuf au plat

    : a fried egg, egg "sunny side up"

ECOUTEZ - Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce today's French word:

Download MP3 for "Oeuf-au-plat"

Un œuf au plat, œuf sur le plat, œuf à la poêle ou œuf miroir est un œuf... cuit à la poêle ou sur une plaque préalablement chauffée. Lorsque l'œuf est cassé dans le récipient, son contenu s'étale et le blanc forme une couronne autour du jaune. (Wikipedia)

A fried egg, or egg on the flat or egg in the pan or mirror egg is an egg...cooked on a preheated surface. When the egg is broken into the recipient, its contents spread and the white forms a crown around the yellow.

Improve your spoken French. Try Pronounce it Perfectly in French or  Exercises in French Phonetics


"Maman Poule"

    by Kristi Espinasse

Max came home for the weekend! Now that he goes to college in Montpellier, a good two-hours from here, we see him beaucoup moins souvent.  So these visits are something to savor--like fried eggs, apparently!

"I have never had these before. C'est très bon!" Max's friend said, as the local boys caught up with each other over brunch. Just last week, Jean-Marc made a similar comment about fried eggs, leading me to believe that les oeufs au plat are not part of French culture. 

It is a particular pleasure to share my American culture with French youth (I was going to say "kids" but I am coming to grips with this empty nest). That they respond so enthusiastically motivates me to share even more... and so I skipped back to the kitchen and fried up a couple more brown-shelled eggs "sunny side up" for these growing youths (they are still growing aren't they? Gosh. Our son is now 21 and a half...)

Turning back to the kitchen a few unexpected words reached me before I even reached the stove. "Merci, Maman Poule!" Max said.

It wasn't true. I wasn't really a mother hen. By offering lunch I had une arrière-pensée, an ulterior motive: to keep Max with me a little while longer. (The boys had been on their way out the door, probably to catch up with each other over burgers at MacDo).

As Max and his friend Yann carried on, chatting in French while eating American-style brunch, I basked in the term of endearment my grown son had lavished on me. "After this, I have cake!" I shouted from the kitchen. "Save room for le gâteau!" I stepped back from the crackling eggs in time to listen for the audible anticipation coming from the next room. This mother hen felt higher and higher, a chick with un-clipped wings!

Returning to the table with seconds straight from the frying pan, I eventually sat down with my coffee to enjoy few moments with the Max and Yann, careful not to be the mom who lingers too long. Five minutes later I casually stood up:

"When you're done just leave the dishes, I will do them!" I said, flexing my un-clipped mother hen wings.

Later on, after the boys had left, I strayed back to the dining room to clean up the mess. To my surprise the table was cleared, but for the dusty game of chess I keep there these days. I continued into the kitchen and found a nearly polished sink. Even the difficult-to-wash frying pan was drying on the rack. Spotless!

I slowly looked around my tidy kitchen when my entire mama poule persona began to smile. He is indeed all grown up now and I am so very proud of him.

An old photo of Max...and a new blog sponsor, just below!!

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Picture take a few years ago, with Max. Not sure what I've made there (Max looks uncertain, too...) but those are definitely oeufs au plat on top!

In today's story I talk about a cake I made. It was a Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake! Using the French yogurt cake recipe, as base, I added a cup of pureed butternut pumpkin, and enough chocolate chip and walnuts to satisfy a chocolate-nutty craving! Click here for the cake recipe.

This picture is even older, and includes Jackie. And there's a picture of the yogurt cake (one version). More versions here

PARIS METRO CUFF - Unique bracelet and great gift for those who love Paris. Click here.

FOUTAS - perfect gift : quick dry towels for camping, sauna, gym--and more! Click here to order.

FRENCH GROCERIES FROM FRANCE - from Dijon mustard to Provence herbs. CLICK HERE

I leave you with a current photo of Max (and Smokey) and a good message, above their heads.

A Message from Kristi on this blog's 19th anniversary
Thank you for reading this language journal. In 2002 I left my job at a vineyard and became self-employed in France. "French Word-A-Day" has been my full-time occupation ever since. Ongoing support from readers like you helps keep this site ad-free and allows me to focus on writing. My wish is to continue creating posts that are educational, insightful, and heart-warming. If my work has touched you in any way, please consider supporting it via a blog donation.

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