She slid up to the counter in the dark office and pushed the necessary documents across the chocolate brown wood towards the woman standing stern and tall behind. “I’d like to choose a date to be married!” she exclaimed, giddy with pride and excitement. Despite her still-broken French, she answered all the questions and signed all of the papers. She was ever-so careful selecting the date; she had heard that marrying on a Tuesday or a Thursday was good luck in the Jewish religion so she chose a Thursday to be married. The 23rd… sounded very lucky as well, and she marked it down and confirmed with one sharp nod. And ran home to tell her man.
“What?!” he cried. “A Thursday?! How could you choose a Thursday? My parents haven’t closed the shop one single day in the thirty years since it has been open for anything or anybody! They’ll refuse to come to our wedding!” He was distressed, to say the least, but she wouldn’t budge, calming him with her assurance that it would all turn out well and for the best. And married they were after that very brief courtship, married they were twenty-five years ago on a sunny July morning following several days’ preparation, cooking their own wedding lunch, baking their own wedding cakes and gathering around them a few selected family and friends. And, sure enough, his parents closed up the shop, put on their Sunday best and followed the wedding party to City Hall where they watched their only son marry the woman he loved who loved him back. The Champagne (supplied by these very same joyfully happy parents) flowed, the food was lavish, the laughter exuberant and the two began their life together wrapped in warmth and merriment.
And they lived happily ever after.
Twenty-five years we have been married, sticking together through thick and thin, the ups and downs so high and so low like a mad crazy roller coaster ride, the joys and difficulties of parenthood, the pleasures and madness of a culturally mixed marriage. Twenty-five years of date nights and family vacations, of exhausting workaday weeks and long months working side by side, of four countries and three languages and two religions and one love.
Love at first sight, perfect marriage, soulmates, all the old clichés gather around us and we bat them around like flies. True, not true? Who can pinpoint when it began? Who can put their finger on the exact definition of what one means to the other? Who can define what is perfect and what isn’t? We move through the years gingerly, trying this and that, trial and lots of error, dancing around traditions and assumptions and each other, pushing against walls of rules and expectations. Arguments, compromise, stubborn refusals and making it up as we go along. Laughing at our own foibles and at the other’s quirks and eccentricities, trying to laugh when crying seems to be the easiest thing, hoping when desperation comes more naturally.
Twenty-five years today and we are on the cusp of a brand new life. A new apartment, our boys grown, both of us beginning new projects and new careers, life is an on-going adventure that is exciting and terrifying at once. Whatever brought us together, that spark, that curiosity and intrigue, that je ne sais quoi is still alive and kicking although over the years it has metamorphosed into something more honest and solid. Oh, romance is still there, the flowers and Champagne, the date nights and weekend getaways, yet that old romance is punctuated now by private jokes and easy comfort, making it all that more delicious.
Our twenty-fifth wedding anniversary will be spent buying neither diamonds nor Champagne but tools and renting a sanding machine, our afternoon spent in a notary office signing the papers which will make us the proud owners of a new Love Nest. With Marty slowly healing at home as best he can, our evening will be quiet and relaxing en famille.
I loved the Cherry Prosecco Granità so much that I knew that replacing the cherries with peaches and the sparkling Rosé Prosecco with white Prosecco would make a stunning treat. And it did. More like a sorbet this time than a granità, and using the Cartizze Prosecco gave a gentler hint of wine, making for a fruitier sorbet. Beautiful! And perfect for toasting the twenty-five years of marriage gone and the twenty-five years of marriage to come.
I want to share this with Jeanne and Meeta for this month’s Monthly Mingle. This month’s Mingle theme, chosen by Jeanne, our hostess with the mostess, is a Taste of Yellow for Barbara. You have read my post on the passing of a friend and beloved and generous food blogger, Barbara of Winos & Foodies who recently lost her very long battle against cancer. This Monthly Mingle is for her. We are all cooking and baking in yellow. I already posted a first Yellow entry, Milan-Style Asparagus with runny egg and Parmesan.
Thanks to the wonderful people at Bisol Prosecco and at Nielsen Massey for generously sponsoring From Plate to Page and offering me bottles of gorgeous Prosecco and bottles of exquisite extract (vanilla, lemon and coffee). Keep an eye out on the Plate to Page website and blog to win an amazing goodie bag filled with amazing products!
BELLINI PEACH AND PROSECCO SORBET
Adapted from a recipe in Marie Claire Idées summer recipe issue
14 – 16 oz (400 – 450 g) fresh ripe yellow peaches
5/8 cup (150 ml) Bisol Prosecco or any other sparkling or dry white wine
6 Tbs runny/liquid honey
¼ tsp Nielsen Massey lemon extract or 2 tsps lemon juice
Peel the peaches (if very juicy, peel the peaches over the bowl of the robot mixer or blender to catch the juice) and remove the pit/stone (discard). Cut the peaches into chunks, place in a robot mixer or blender and mix to purée. Pour the peach purée into a bowl.
Add the Prosecco, the honey and the lemon extract or lemon juice and blend or whisk well. Pour the liquid into a freezer-safe container, a metal pan or a plastic container, preferably with a lid, and place in the freezer. The larger and shallower your pan (8 x 12 x 1 inch/20 x 30 x 2 cm), the quicker the sorbet will be ready to eat.
For a shallow pan, stir the sorbet every 15 minutes or so, using a fork, spatula or metal spoon, until ready to serve. For a deeper container, stir every few hours and then leave in the freezer overnight. Stir it up before serving.
Serve as is for a refreshing, flavorful treat. For a summery, elegant dessert, serve with fresh raspberries and strawberries.