Weekly Love: Week 188

Even as the festive period was starting to get into the swing of things I was feeling a little blue, so I decided that high season for Cancale oysters (and other assorted local Brittany shellfish) provided the perfect excuse to take off for a week in the Brittany countryside in the stone barn my parents and I have been converting for the past decade near the coast. We watched lots of films, I read lots of books (my favourites? The Lady and the Poet if you’re into late Elizabethan historical romance, and The Edible Atlas if you want to be taken on a rather mouthwatering and informative culinary tour around the world), and of course ate a lot of oysters accompanied by the requisite Christmas fizz. Oh, and I perfected my recipe for a creamy, white wine and mustard spiked mushroom sauce which we spooned over grilled veal chops in the evenings.

Weekly Love 16.12.16[1]

1. A bottle of Clairette de Die and local Cancale oysters in front of a Christmas movie on holiday in Brittany. Our favourite afternoon films from the trip? The Imitation Game (so moving) and The Rewrite (yet another Hugh Grant rom-com I did not know I needed!) | 2. Picking out a massive Christmas tree (we went for one bigger than this in the end!) Oh, and the scarf I’m wearing in this picture is basically the warmest, cosiest thing ever (and is not too expensive either). They have loads of different colours, too! | 3. Christmas lights in Canterbury. | 4. Enjoying an early Christmas present from my parents: a Brittany Blue lobster, langoustine and Cancale oyster Fruits de Mer platter in Cancale. | 5. Canterbury Cathedral at Christmas. | 6. Walking through Combourg’s Monday market on the way to lunch: December is all about so many different types of cabbage (some as big as my head!), squashes, and enough leeks to feed an army.

Weekly Love 16.12.16[2]

7. Christmas wreaths for sale outside the florists. | 8. Brittany leek, scallop and cream galettes for lunch in Combourg. | 9. Picking up some oysters to take home from the Cancale oyster market. | 10. Taking part in my December 1st ritual of switching out my bathtub candle for The White Company’s ‘Winter’ candle. | 11. Brussels Sprouts for sale outside the greengrocers on Deal High Street. Love them or loathe them (I only like them when they are cooked like this), it is not Christmas without them! | 12. Some of my favourite Christmas lights in London at the Rosewood Hotel.

What have you been enjoying this week, and what have you got planned for the weekend? I’m off to celebrate my first Pakistani wedding party, and for our traditional family pre-Christmas pub lunch (as well as a Christmas curry with my work colleagues) over the next few days! For more like this, be sure to sign up to my monthly newsletter, which goes out on the first Sunday of every month and is packed full of seasonal eats, delicious recipes, and other updates.