The first special occasion celebrated at Mas de la Perdrix was in the fall of 2007. We completed the two years of renovations and moved into the Mas in July of 2007. To celebrate our new second home, that fall we invited Marilyn’s sister and her husband to accompany Marilyn’s mother, Marjorie, to the Mas for a week’s long celebration of her 90th birthday. Still spry, living by herself and continuing to be able to drive, she was more than eager to see France again. We had first brought Marjorie to celebrate her 85th birthday to a house we were renting in this area. She delighted in the new sites, food, and the “foreignness.” There she ate mussels for the first time in her life and fell in love with them.
It was a perfect celebration. The French adore older adults and we toasted her at a celebratory dinner at a nearby one star restaurant. When our waiter learned it was her 85th birthday, the whole restaurant staff treated her like a queen.
Since that time, it seems that each year at least one of our guest parties is celebrating a milestone birthday, an anniversary, or just a reunion with friends not seen for a while. In fact, we have had two couples marry on the lawn of the Mas. It means a great deal to us that the charm, ambiance, and tranquility lends itself to so many celebratory occasions, ours included!!
For 2 people:
2 lbs black mussels (PEI if possible), rinsed and de-bearded
2 leeks – white and light green parts, thinly sliced
½ cup dry white wine
½ cup chicken broth
¼ cup crème fraiche
Saute sliced leeks in olive oil
Deglaze with the white wine and add chicken broth
Add mussels, cover and simmer until mussels have opened
Stir in crème fraiche
Serve in bowls with the broth
Accompany with French fries