Immoveable Feast: A Paris Christmas
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John Baxter has long been one of my favorite essayists, and not just because he writes about life as an ex-pat living in Paris.
In his most recent offering, An Immoveable Feast, (and yes, the title is a reference to a certain Hemingway publication) Baxter is his usual charming self, as he writes of his adventures in planning the Christmas Feasts to end all Christmas Feasts, for his wife’s very picky, very French family.
While the entire book is incredibly amusing, my favorite chapters involve the hunt for a whole pig, still in its own skin, to be roasted for dinner. Apparently, it is not the custom to serve pork in its skin, in France, and only something extremely un-French will be able to really impress the family. Baxter relays the expressions of butchers and other vendors so well that you can hear the accents and see their gesticulations.
The flaw in this book? It made me so hungry I had to keep putting it down so I wouldn’t drool on the pages.
Goes well with: Bacon. Lots and lots of bacon. And a slice of mince pie.