The party is over!

The party is over!


The party is over in the Pyrenees, we will return home tomorrow. I will post a few more things about my trip, but with much regrets it will be from New York State. Miles and I have to return early as Miles is being called to finish Muttnik.
Today we had our last concert in Peyragudes and I will post a few pix and videos later. We had a blast and after the concert  as we had a drink at our favorite watering hole, “le Faisant Doré,” one of my brother’s friend paid me the funniest comment ever: “How come you speak English wich such a perfect accent and French with such a  thick one!”. Yeah! go figure!

Anyhow, 2 days ago Pierre decided to go back to Bourg d’Oueil early after a day in Luchon to be able to stop for dinner at the Sapin Fleuri. We had a marvelous meal full of remiscences for me. This is what we had:

Potage de Légumes (both of us)
vegetable soup

Truite Meunière (Pierre)
Pan fried trout
Ramequin (Nicole)

Faux Filet (Pierre)
Truite Meunière (Nicole)

Tarte aux Fruits
Fruit Tart

Our wine was a simple clean & chilled Saumur Champigny (Cabernet Franc). This was a lovely way to say good by to Bourg d’Oueil. The Ramequin where definitely a wink to my grandfather’s version called “Le Ramequin Poste et Golf” ( a light a divine crust less quiche, remind me to give you the recipe. It will make a great low-cal brunch item). My father always said : Jeannot Toucouère (father and co-owner of the Sapin Fleuri) was one of the best cook they had at my family restaurant. The hotel-restaurant is now run by Jeannot (father) Olivier (son) & Sylvie (Olivier’s wife) and I even saw Adrien (their 3 year old son) helping out super efficiently in the kitchen! They are all very dear to me and eating there is always an emotional moment. I will have a last glass of wine and then close down the suitcase for tomorow early call. Can’ wait to be back!

Summery Garlicky Beans

Summery Garlicky Beans


As blogged last week, this past Friday I set up my kitchen/stage at 5C Café in Manhattan. I  want to thank Michael Bisio who delighted us on bass, Pierre Joris, Yuko Otomo & Steve Dalashinky who read fun & beautiful food & Paris poems, Miles Joris-Peyrafitte who took  the photographs and helped set up/clean up, Adrien Aquilina for his  assistance on waiting tables, as well as Bruce,  Trudy  & the volunteers at 5C  for their graceful hospitality & for giving me the opportunity to cook and sing. Many thanks also to a sophisticated, warm & engaging audience. Please feel free to post comments about the evening if you were there. If you were not there: the menu, the recipe of the main course, & Miles’ photographs are below.
But first let me tell you about my next performance coming up this Thursday with Peter Knoll on electric guitar. No food this time, but singing 3 French songs. I am really excited to be part of the Mongrel Vaudeville, and looking forward to the various & extravagant performances.
Mongrel Vaudeville
“Blue Moon in June”
What: Performance
Host: Julian of Nowherr
Start Time: Thursday, June 25 at 8:00pm
End Time: Thursday, June 25 at 10:00pm
Where: thru the swingin doors at Freddy’s Bar & Backroom
485 Dean Street Brooklyn, NY 11215
That’s the corner of Dean Street and 6th Avenue in Brooklyn.

Now Friday’s menu:

Sardine Paté w/ pink peppercorns (see Sardine Tartine blog ; all I added were the pink peppercorns)
Syrian Cheese served with green spicy Turkish and black Moroccan lemon olives

Main Course:

Summery Garlicky Beans & Kale
(Thank you d’Artagnan for the coco Tarbais beans)


Strawberry short cake w/ live whipped cream!
(Thank you Pierre Landet for the pan and the strawberries)

Photographs by Miles Joris-Peyrafitte

Summery Garlicky Beans & Kale Recipe

I don’t have exact proportions, and it is really up to you to make it the way you like. Though as a rough indication here are the ingredients and the proportional ratio.
Soak beans over night:  2/3 white (coco tarbais)   for 1/3 red beans (dark red pinto beans).
Cook your beans separately and reserve.
—in duck fat, or olive oil— enough diced onions  to cover the bottom of the skillet in which you will cook your dish.
Add a few ribs of diced celery and diced red pepper. Sauté for a few minutes.
Add the purple kale, about half the pot, sauté until wilted.
Add the green garlic cloves. Make sure you buy them with the green stalk attached. Use about 1/2 a head per person. Green fresh garlic is very mild, do not be afraid.

Add about 1 to 2 garlic scapes per person (see last blog for info on scapes). Make sure they are very tender, if not peel them and cut them like green beans.
Salt & freshly ground pepper.
Add stock or water to just cover your vegetables & legumes.
Cook for about 40/60 minutes depending how big your pot.
Just before serving add one tablespoon of a pesto —my “pesto” had only  basil/regular garlic & olive oil, but nothing prevents you to add pignoles and cheese. I just wanted to keep it light as the appetizer had cheese and the dessert, whipped cream.
Make it soon because the garlic ain’t gone be fresh for much longer.

Egg Nest

Egg Nest

Egg Nest

More eggs, more rice & more good fast food today. I had very little time to cook but was craving comfy food after being Momyger for the weekend. When Miles (my younger son), gets to work as an actor I become half mom, half manager, that’s what a Momyger is! I am learning a lot about the job, thanks to the coaching  of Joseph (my older son). Miles’ latest role took us to Upstate New York, around the Poukheepsie area, for the shoot of some promo scenes of an horror movie called Muttnick by William Szarka. Miles (Joris-Peyrafitte) plays Muttnick a 17 year old boy who has been raised with dogs —and like one of them— until age 5. He has been rescued by Sam (D.J Hazard) whose life mission is to hunt down and kill people harming animal gratuitously. You can see more pix of the shoot here. Warning: some are bloody, so refrain if you are sensitive to gore. I never watch horror movies, I don’t like them at all, but I have to say, to observe the shoot was a lot of fun. It is amazing & often funny, to get to see the tricks that makes horror “looks real”.
So after a lot of fake blood, a lot of mosquitoes, a lot of driving, a lot of sandwiches (especially  for Miles who had to eat  about 10 of them for one scene!), too many danishes and way too much coffee, I got home Monday lunch time craving a tasty, comfy home cooked meal. The fridge  looked very  bare when I opened it. There was still 1 cup of cooked brown rice leftover from 5 days ago (good thing that it takes a while for cooked rice to go bad), the end of a kimchee jar, a couple of eggs and parsley. I could have made another version of Om-Riz, but what would I blog about! I opted for what I could call a Korean style fried rice and I  called it “Egg Nest”.  Another very fast, cheap and satisfying dish.

1 Tbsp of olive oil
about 1 cup of cooked brown rice
about 1/4 cup kimchee (I like Sunja’s natural kimchee, very flavorful and no MSG unlike many others)
1 egg (room temperature)
1/3 cup chopped parsley

Egg Nest in the wok
The “egg nest” in the pan

In a wok heat the olive oil. Add the rice and the kimchee under high heat. Make sure the mixture doesn’t stick in the pan. Let it fry for a few minutes.
Lower the heat under the wok. Make a well in the middle of the rice and add one whole egg delicately (see picture above). Cook  the egg until done to your liking.
Personally I like to make the bottom get a little bit crunchy, a sort of bottom crust.
Now comes the tricky moment —a non stick pan will make this procedure easier, but it is manageable  in the wok if you are careful— make sure you
slightly loosen the bottom of your mixture with a spatula. Slide the all thing onto a plate. Sprinkle with paprika garnish with plenty chopped parsley.
Voilà! To wrap up there is a few pix of the shoot. We had a great time, and I must say crew and actors worked super hard. I hope this turns into a feature because they sure deserve it. Good luck guys!

DJ HazardMuttnick ShootMuttnick Shoot
Full album here

January 1st 2009, An Neuf!

January 1st 2009, An Neuf!

As planned, Pierre Joris, Miles Joris-Peyrafitte and I spent January 1st at the St Mark’s Poetry Project‘s 35th Annual New Year’s Day Poetry Marathon. We got there at about 1:30 p.m. to set up my “Crêpes station” in the Parish Hall. I flipped crêpes until I run out of batter at about 6 p.m. That gave me time to catch some poetry. Ron Padgett had kicked off the event at around 2:30 p.m. I left my set up to listen to Pierre, he read two poems from “Turbulence” (Saint Lazaire Press, 1991). Shortly after, Miles accompanied me on “Things Fall Where they Lie” a piece (recorded on La Garbure Transcontinentale/The Bi-Continental Chowder CD) dedicated to the Venus of Lespugue, and written as a companion piece to a series of paintings on the Venus de Lespugue.

Performing with Miles was certainly my highlight of the day, and we made it on to the radio the next day! Lisa Chow, a reporter from WNYC –and excellent French speaker– had stopped by the crêpes station, and interviewed me. You can read the short printed interview here. Although we didn’t hear the broadcast of the snippet of our performance on early Friday morning, it was great to hear from friends who did and for you there is the full live recording (by Pierre Joris) below:

When I finally ran out of batter, I could sit down, listen to and watch some great performances. I’ll just report “en vrac” some of the impressions as my memory runs them:
I laughed at the witty and hilarious Swallow’s family band
I keep thinking of Erica Hunt’s pigs’ knuckles poem
I need to talk to Anne Tardos about her idea of Spinoza
I still feel Sally Silver’s dance on Bruce Andrews’ words in my body
I look up to John Giorno’s elegance and performing style
I thought Patty’s Smith performance was better than last year’s
Avram Fefer’s solo was soulful
Anne Waldman’s performance with Devin Waldman on saxophone electrified and inspired me
I was looking forward to Douglas’ outfit and was not disappointed
Ismael, Sylvie, Lucas watched their parental poets, thinking : we are next!
Stacy Szymaszek, and the Poetry Project crew of volunteers energized me.
& throughout the event everybody was thinking of Susan, Charles, Felix and Emma:
Emma Bernstein’s recent passing permeated the atmosphere, and several readers dedicated their performance to her memory. Emma’s beautiful and soulful funeral service was held on January 31st. She was the daughter of our friends, poet Charles Bernstein & painter Susan Bee & the sister of young singer Felix Bernstein. She was a very accomplished photographer and writer who at her young age leaves a significant body of work (click here for links for Emma). There will be an memorial event on February 17th when Emma had been scheduled to host one of the Belladonna* Celebrates the Elders events. I will announce the details as we get closer to the date.

Waiting for Gustav

Waiting for Gustav

All our thoughts to Megan Burns, Dave Brinks & all the poets in New Orleans. I just spoke to Dave, they have evacuated & they are patiently waiting for Gustav to do his thing. The good news is the storm has weakened slightly before landfall, it is now a category 2 hurricane. Dave recommended getting infos from, I have also been looking at the National Hurricane Center website.

Saturday, Megan Burns posted a poem on her blog about their current hurricane experience, I have pasted it below but do log on to Megan’s blog for more great poetry. I am also posting two videos made by Miles Joris-Peyrafitte with poems by Megan Burns & Dave Brinks. They were recorded, shot & edited when Pierre Joris, Miles (our son) and I, visited New Orleans after Katrina in November 2005. Miles was then 13 and by the way he will he be 16 tomorrow (Happy Birthday Miles!) since then Miles returned twice to Nola. I am planning to return early this winter and hopefully research on a project that involves food, poetry & genealogy. More on that later, meanwhile we are thinking of you friends down there!

3rd Anniversary/ 1st Evacuation Since…
by Megan Burns

More Than Halfway

infected season
if time won’t hold still
this life too is a dreary anger
let it come
take us what water that will
grasp at our designs
a life that falters as best can be described
it’s a short ride in darkening light
to a part of the city still trembling
and tethered
most of the block stays the same
looking further into the enveloping night
see how the homes have been beaten
a memory from childhood
taken out to lay down in disgrace
folded edges as witness palimpsest
danger overlapping disaster
shimmering gaze—all cities reject silence
desolate as is the world wrapped round us
the repetition of “towards recovery”
place holders these empty hulls
beached on the shore of this sunken city
exposed as a vacuum filling with anxiety
each time a breeze picks up in the Atlantic
each time a butterfly wing opens and closes
half way around the earth

Megan Burns

November 2005:
Long Night Moon poem Megan Burns, Video Miles Joris-Peyrafitte

Good House Keeping poem by David Brinks, Video Miles Joris-Peyrafitte