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Good morning readers. I hope you slept well and you had something delicious for your super last evening. We only had good old fish and chips, not from the chip shop and it was lovely and so easy to do as hubby was in late after training at work.

Although we haven’t been dining around the world for a while as I said in a previous blog we have prepared some delicious food and visited a couple or more countries in the process, some visited before, but this time nothing complicated or time consuming.

When we go to France amongst many other things Moules et frites is one of our favourite lunch time treats or supper if not wanting too much and with the weather we have been having recently we did just that.

Moules-frites or Moules et frites

actually originates from Belgium.Quite possibly the dish was originally produced by putting together mussels, a popular and cheap foodstuff eaten around the Flemish coast, and  potatoes,fried,  which were  eaten  all around the country in the winter months when no fish or other food was available.

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However, it is indeed very popular in France and I believe the French have adopted it as there own, or that is how it seems. The title itself is French and means exactly what it says Moules – mussels and Frites – fries. In Belgium, some have considered it their national dish, but I am happy wherever it comes from, having never been to Belgium I am happy to eat in France.

Mussels (Moules) can be cooked in various ways and there are various recipes out there to tempt you and I have tried various recipes including blue cheese, tomato and chilli, but for our light supper we opted for the more, what I believe to be, the more traditional way to prepare them in white wine, garlic and cream. There are lots of recipes out there on various sites for you to chose from, but Ian has been cooking moules for years he just does it without thinking and we find it a quick easy supper that can be eaten in the garden with a lovey crusty loaf and  a lovely chilled glass of your favourite white wine, or in my case this time a cranberry based chilled drink- delicious.

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Another thing Ian and I enjoy is a selection of cold meats, olives, bread, ‘tapas bits’ and cheese. Another evening in the summer saw us both not being able to decide what to cook. Our youngest son was safe at Grandmas and it didn’t seem as important to cook a full blown meal, especially with the temperatures we were having.

Tapas has indeed very much taken the whole world by storm. These varied, wide-ranging  appetisers can offer infinite variety. They are perfect for sharing and taste great too. If the wine is chosen carefully this can be an amazing super or even again a light lunch. The word “tapas” is a derivative  from the Spanish verb tapar, “to cover”, an equivalent of the English word top.

Before the 19th century, European roads were in bad condition. Some were originally old Roman roads (viae romanae); some were trails dating from the Middle Ages. Travelling was slow and exhausting. Most people could not read or write, and Spain was no exception. Inns, calledposadas, albergues or bodegas, grew up along the roads, offering meals and rooms, plus fresh horses for travellers. Since few innkeepers could write and few travellers read, inns offered their guests a sample of the dishes available, on a “tapa” (the word for pot cover in Spanish). In fact, a “tapa” was (and still is) a small portion of any kind of Spanish cuisine.

Cold meats, chunk of Tuna, an olive skewered or chorizo sausage, to beef cheek served with sweet potato, deep fried squid, onion rings, slices of bread toasted with slices of cold meat on top, or with sun dried tomato and cheese, but really served on small plates throughout the day on a ‘tapa’ as mentioned above. The word  tapas can be interpreted differently in different places. So in the Minter household we decided we would interpret to what we enjoy and have cold meats etc. We were not going to have a full blown Tapas evening but did feel a selection of cold meats, cheese, olives and bread would suffice.

Easy to prepare…Just put the meat on a plate. Mozzarella can be added along with sundried tomato, peppers and artichokes,dress with olive oil and basil leaves. Place the cheese on a cheese board, slice your crusty loaf and place your olives and anything else you have or prepared or bought in a bowl, pour some wine and enjoy…..

We had a wonderful evening and watched a film and caught up with all our news.

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Let me know what your favourite light supper is or lunch time treat – maybe share with me some of your favourites or favourite recipes that we can try.

Until the next time enjoy the rest of the day and remember ideas are good to share.

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