LET’S HYGGE SEPTEMBER 2022
[definition of hygge]
a quality of cosiness and comfortable living that engenders a feeling
of contentment and well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).
Add a little hygge to each month
Bonjour from Paris!
My greetings come to you after spending some magical weeks travelling around Europe. It’s been absolutely fantastic to be back again, catching up with dear friends and extended family.
I have gathered together a few things to share with you from my time in Paris. I haven’t visited this beautiful city since I was 17 years old, which was many years ago… as you can see from my grey hair in the pictures! So much has changed. I was surprised by how easy it is to get around on bikes. We cycled everywhere, from the Champs-Élysées to Musée du Louvre, Place du Pont Neuf, Jardin du Luxembourg, Musée du Rodin to Montmartre. It is an excellent way to get around and is so safe thanks to the great bike lanes. I have included a little selection of my holiday photos with this newsletter and I am planning to make a little guide e-book later with all of my recommendations, favourite spots and newly found gems! Until then, I hope you will enjoy this month’s French theme. We can learn so much from the French. I adored watching the locals enjoying their Sundays in the Jardin du Luxembourg where they read or rest in the shade, play chess, meet for romantic picnics, play petanque or dance in the pavilions dressed in the most beautiful costumes, inviting everyone who passes by to join them. How I would love it if we had more public dancing in Australia!
I wish you a lovely September…maybe filled with a little dancing, some delicious mussels and a cozy French movie. Let’s hygge!
I enjoy creating a diary whenever I travel. I have diaries from 20 years of travelling, filled with discovered hidden gems and lovely places where I have eaten. Taking time to write in my diary is a way of experiencing everything once more. I enjoy this little pause in the day where I can write and think back on the things I have noticed, tasted or been inspired by. It’s a wonderful thing to bring home from your holiday – a little book full of adventures, hidden treasures and helpful recommendations.
I am a big fan of mussels – our family eat them several times a month in different variations. They are a nutritious and healthy dish served simply with a good baguette! Moreover, mussels are cheap and quick to prepare and I have found some organic, live ones in our local supermarket here in Sydney. In Paris I had them cooked with celery which I really enjoyed. I hope you will enjoy them too!
MUSSELS WITH CELERY/MOULES AU CÉLERI
2 kg fresh mussels, cleaned
1 small onion chopped
3 stalks fresh celery with leaves
2 large garlic cloves chopped
1 large glass dry white wine
4 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp olive oil
Pour the olive oil in a large saucepan and place it over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic and stir fry for 4 to 5 minutes. Chop the fresh celery and leaves then also add them to the pan, together with the fresh thyme and bay leaves. Season with a dash of pepper and salt. Stir well. Let the vegetables cook for 3 more minutes then add the rinsed and drained fresh mussels to the pan. Cover the pan. Cook the mussels for 6 minutes, shaking the pan a couple of times to make sure the mussels and the vegetables are mixed well, then add the white wine.
Stir the mussels well using a slotted spoon. Cover the pan again and let the mussels cook for 5 more minutes until the mussels have opened. Check the seasoning and add extra pepper or salt to taste. Scoop the cooked mussels into large bowls and top with the remaining onion, celery and wine. Serve with a good quality baguette.
I will be playing this while cooking to take me back to the narrow lanes of Paris: Edith Piaf “No, je ne regrette rien”
I can highly recommend watching the French film HAUTE COUTURE. I watched it on the plane trip to Europe. It’s a lovely film about Ester who is at the end of her career as Head Seamstress at the Dior, Avenue Montaigne workshop. One day, she gets her handbag stolen in the metro by a 20 year old girl named Jade. Instead of calling the police she decides to take care of Jade. It’s a heartwarming film about friendship and the love for craftmanship and fashion. It is an elegant and very French film.
One of our most used wedding presents is a French Le Creuset pot. It was gifted to us by a dear friend – he is a French chef! It’s now 23 years since our wedding and not a week goes by without our treasured pot boiling away on the stove. This is definitely a classic French product – one that I cherish!
Do you want to catch up on some of the previous months? Please head to my Journal here: https://lindbjerggraphic.com.au/journal/
Feel free to share “let’s hygge” with a friend…
I wish you a cozy month of September with lovely projects, dance and hygge!
I’ve compiled my family traditions into a digital flip book “let’s hygge CHRISTMAS” for you to peruse and take inspiration from.
Spring is here and I am excited to start gardening again and have ordered my seeds – I can’t wait to see them grow.
I’d like to share a family recipe with you for Danish Kokostoppe. They are a delicious treat and very easy to make.