Thursday, November 19, 2015

Pinecones and French China

I've long wanted to do a table around this pinecone pitcher we found
years ago in the mountains of East Tennessee.

These pinecone hurricanes that we got years ago in the
Bob Timberlake store in Blowing Rock, NC go nicely with the pitcher.
I use battery operated candles with them now.

Why buy flowers when the Kousa dogwood outside is still glorious?

But pinecones and fall leaves aren't all I'm thinking of as I set this table.

As we all have been, I'm thinking about Paris too.

I don't have many French dishes but I pull out what I do have.

These French faience plates we found in a Goodwill one day go on the bare table.

I posted about finding them one serendipitous day HERE.

We found these little bowls over 40 years ago in a restaurant supply store.

They aren't French but they read Petite Marmite Restaurant
and are perfect for the first course of Consomme Creams.
(I can't figure out how to use accent marks on Blogger posts.
Does anyone know how? That "e" on the end should have one.)

It's from Mildred O. Knopf's excellent 1986 Memoirs of a Cook.

She was wife of movie producer Edwin H. Knopf who was brother to
Alfred A. Knopf who published the cookbooks of a nice lady by the name of
Julia Child. Mildred was a star in the kitchen too.

We must have bread, so let's have a baguette.

And let's make it a baguette from France, non-gmo
with only flour, water, yeast and salt in it.

Costco carries it!

For our entree I followed Dorie Greenspan's recipe for Sheet Pan
Chicken with Apples and Kale.

The pictures on the right are before it went in the oven,
and the finished dish was delicious, as are all of Greenspan's.

She and her husband landed in France the night of the horrible attacks
and only heard the news when in their taxi.

For our salad we'll have an avocado bacon salad from one of my favorite
regional cookbooks, Southern Sideboards. It's served on a French ironstone platter.

The dressing is yummy!

Juice from a lime or two, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup of sour cream,

1/4 cup mayonnaise, and 2 cloves of garlic, minced.

Thank you for letting me make like a tablescaping and food blogger!

Don't you find that it's comforting to lose yourself in homey things
when your heart is heavy? I do.

I hope to post the dessert to this meal next.

It's by a French actress who is not so well known in this country.
I'll save her name for the post but she was "strongly considered for the lead
in Casablanca."


  1. What a beautiful table. I love all the natural elements and the pretty pops of red on those bowls! The leaves are super colorful. Ours are all brown now. Not nearly as festive!

  2. I went to look at the author's blog/IG, and lost my unfinished comment. I will try to summarize, in a stream of consciousness way. :-)

    I can't do accent marks either---(sigh)---Yes, pretty blog land should be a haven for us, in times of horror---I didn't adhere to that, yesterday--- so I must stop blogging, until I can go back to this way---

    Lovely post! Delicious and beautiful post! Gracious, I have never even tried to do a table-setting-kind of a post!!! :-)))) you are way ahead of me.

    Gentle hugs, Tessa

  3. Your table looks so beautiful and the meal looks so good. I think our hearts are right now with the people of France and it makes us think more about our home and family.

  4. i'm in heaven here.
    it's the loveliest most restful place. i love pine forests and pine cones...
    so you had me at the very beginning! and then it just got better and better...
    with little bits of nostalgia thrown in like the spice in a beloved delicious dish.

  5. Wow Dewena! The table, the kousa dogwood and that chicken dish all look amazing and just perfect for a family fall dinner.

    I'm not on blogger, but there should be an icon in the toolbar for the accents. I'll try to find it for you, but in a bit we are leaving to pick up sarissa :).

  6. What a gorgeous table - and you are right, the simple act of setting a table and preparing a meal are comforting when we are living in such troubled times. Wonderful post, as always.

  7. I love the pine cone touches; your table looks lovely. I am going to look for the bread at Costco. I don't know how to do those accent marks either. I agree that being in the coziness of our homes is good therapy for the ugliness in the world that we can't do anything about. Sigh.

  8. I love using things from nature for a tablescape. I need to carry a bag and pick up pinecones this week. Everything looks lovely my friend. Hugs, Diane

  9. Your tablescape is just beautiful. Love that pinecone pitcher and the hurricanes. Lovely dinner, too. I agree that sometimes the best balm for a heavy heart is to be grateful and settled at home.

  10. A beautiful table and a lovely tribute to a country undergoing difficult days. The pinecones and pitcher add a lot of homeyness to your decor. I'm off the check the chicken recipe. Sounds yummy.

  11. The table is all ready and so pretty! And the food sounds so delicious! When can we all show up? Ha ha lol

  12. Dewena you are making me want chicken for breakfast, that recipe looked so good!!!

    Lovely little scenes around your place.; so warm and pretty. My grandma's turkey platter is rimmed with greenery and pinecones :)

  13. I don't know what's prettier, Dewena. . .the food or the table setting. You have some wonderful pieces, and you've put them all together in such a charming way. It's timeless. I believe now more than ever we need beauty around us; homes that are sanctuaries. . .peaceful, familiar, loving. Be well, my friend.

  14. Hi Dewena,
    Just popping in today to do some blog reading and possibly a post of my own this afternoon. I just love your pine cone pieces. and that pitcher is my favorite. It looks so pretty with the large pine cones and white pumpkin next to it. Your table looks lovely and so inviting! The food looks delicious! Yes please!!

  15. I'm a great lover of anything pinecone, so I'm loving your tablescape. I especially like the small pitcher. The food all looks so delicious too, Dewena.
    I just watched Casablanca a couple of nights ago. I do love Ingrid Bergman in the part.

  16. Beautiful tablesetting, Dewena, and so meaningful with your Parisian tributes. The food looks scrumptious! As one who can't pass up a pinecone, I just love that pitcher! I don't know if you use a Mac or a PC, but here is a link to how to type accent codes (and other symbols) with a Mac:

    Here is a link if you use Windows/PC:

    Have a great Thanksgiving, Dewena! Enjoy your family!

  17. Oh Cewena, I am swooning! Your table is breathtaking. Those pine one pieces just remind me of you and you Tennessee home so much and you combined them with touches of France that are darling...those bowls...aahhh! Then you topped it off with those outstanding recipes. Girl, you are amazing. Enjoy your break and family time. Now I'm going back and look at your beautiful table again.

  18. Such a lovely table setting, and a very good post to read with your tributes.
    Enjoy your short blogging break and thanksgiving.

    All the best Jan

  19. Dewena, your French touches on your table look so lovely. I have been thinking of Paris lately too. The avocado and bacon salad looks so yummy. I love both avocado and bacon, what a combination! The dogwood looks fantastic as your table centerpiece. I want to wish my dear friend a Happy Thanksgiving. May you be surrounded with family, love and lots of food!

    love, ~Sheri

  20. I like it. :-)
    I will be taking a blog break, I wanted to stop in and wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.
    xx oo

  21. Oh my!!!! LOVE those pinecones on the pitcher and the hurricane globes and the real all goes so beautifully with your wonderful French china (found at GOODWILL!!!!) and the green table, the lovely linens. I am so envious of your Thanksgiving table right now!

  22. The table looks beautiful just the way it is and the setting was absolutely lovely, Dewena.

    Paris... horrific. I can't even begin to tell you how I felt.

    But, I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving with your family and that you're doing well, my very lovely sweet friend.

    love to you,

  23. Dewena -- I know you posted this awhile back, but I wanted to stop by and say hi. I know you're taking a break, hope it's going well, and you are having a good December.
    Your table is beautiful! Love the dogwood branches, too. Your food looks so delicious, too!! What a thoughtful gesture to acknowledge Paris. I, too, find that doing homey, domestic things help in troubled times. We can't fix the world, but we can try and bring beauty to our little part of it.

  24. Oh, how you always have a way of quieting the chaos, and soothing the soul with your pretty presentations of scrumptious fare, seasonal accessories, and my favourite of your 'courses', the 'tasty' tidbits of intriguing dinner conversation about all the participants of your perfect table settings, which tend to linger in the mind, afterward, making your gatherings always sweet and memorable ones.

    Love to you,