lundi 7 juin 2010

Strawberry fields forever

Feeling the gentle rays of the evening sun, you wonder how on earth everything could have been so black in your heart a few days earlier. Just a passing attack of the blues and nothing to worry about! My mind is filled with thoughts of long summer days in England, sitting by the river while a gentle breeze creates delicate ripples on the surface of the water. But I also think of picnics with friends in the park with quiches, salads, raspberry pavlova, cookies, fruit and homemade lemonade spread out over a checked blanket, happily forgetting the time until the sun disappears and we reluctantly pack everything away, giving each other large portions of leftovers so none of us will have to cook the next day.

Or perhaps to stop for an ice cream from a Gelatoria, eaten in the shade, watching the others around me lying in the sun. I imagine taking a train to a place I've never been before, too distracted by the unknown landscape to read the books I've so carefuly chosen, tucking into the sandwiches and cake prepared at the crack of dawn. Most of all, I'd love to see the sea again soon, to hear the cries of the seagulls overhead, mesmerised by the breaking of the waves. There's a longing for light cotton dresses, boat trips at dusk, for days in Venice where I'd awaken to the church bells ringing out in conversation with one another in Antonioni's l'Avventura. I feel nostalgic for tennis matches on grass even if the sight of red clay courts is more poignant because it reminds me how beautiful and tragic the Garden of the Finzi-Continis was.

Yet for the moment, I'm trying to enjoy the days while they're still not too hot, to take advantage of the endless evenings walking in the parks or scanning the shelves of my favourite bookstores, torn between ones on photography, novels in French or an illustrated guide to botany, to buy as much fresh and juicy fruit as my fridge can accommodate from the market and to bake as much as possible.

Rainy days seem far away

Beautiful flowers close to Sophie-Charlotte Platz

Doesn't the green of the leaves look amazing in this light?

Relaxing on Friday evening in Schlosspark Charlottenburg

Nice accessories in Bleibtreustraße

Evening falls on Savignyplatz

For tennis, the most appropriate thing would be strawberries and cream but for the moment, I felt like making another tart, filled with crème patisserie. The ones I chose were more expensive than those on other market stalls but biting into them, I had forgotten how amazing strawberries could be. I've often complained they're overrated - expensive and often simply sour or tasted. While they might not take the special place of lemons, I have the feeling I'll be buying them quite a lot this summer. The recipe comes from Smitten Kitchen - click here.

Strawberry tart (tarte aux fraises)

Monica Vitti in l'Avventura

23 commentaires:

  1. I'm glad to hear that you are feeling better now... Summer also makes me long for things and sometimes gives me the blues because my dreams can't come true.

    anyway, that tart is wonderful enough to uplift anybody's spirits! And so are your gorgeous shots!



  2. Beautiful pictures! I just love the poppy shot... makes me want to go into my garden and plant some for next year.

  3. J'ai mangé les premières fraises du marché ce week-end ; savoureuses, parfumées, hmmm... cette galerie que tu as photographiée me plaît bien.

  4. I didn't want it to end. Your writing sings :)

  5. Beautifully written - makes me want to come to Berlin.

  6. What a charming post, Vanessa! I loved every word and every photo. Early summer is indeed an enchanting time.
    Unfortunately we are at the start of a long, humid summer, which will not break much until late October. But I remember those days of enchantment when I lived in Michigan.

  7. That strawberry tart looks amazing! and since I'm a huge fan of earrings, I could only notice the picture with the cherry-shaped ones... They would be pretty usefull to me right now: Vancouver is still in a November mood, it's pourring with rain outside. Brr.

  8. Beautiful post. Amazing photography, the squirrel photo is perfect. As is the gorgeous strawberry tart. 10 out of 10!


  9. oh, i love the windows + flowers. so gorgeous!

    xo Alison

  10. That strawberry tart looks so good.

  11. @Rosa - Summer can be indeed be difficult and it's normal to get the blues sometimes but there are also lots of great things around us to do and photograph so I try to remember that.
    @Crazy sweet life - It also makes me wish I had a garden and poppies are maybe my favourite flower.
    @Rose - Cette galerie est très mignonne et se trouve dans une cour. J'ai simplement vu la porte ouverte et ne m'y attendais pas à trouver quelque chose d'aussi chouette.
    @Tracy - I always think the same thing about your posts so thanks a lot!
    @Sasa - I hope we'll find a chance to meet in my town or yours before you go back.
    @Barbara - Thanks dear friend! I've heard about the heat and humidity of Florida so it must be tough getting through those sticky days. Here too, the freshness has faded and it's just hot now. I actually prefer the British climate.
    @Julie - Actually, I had my eye on those too, aren't they cute and perfect for summer? Another friend of mine wants the bag and the sunglasses. Rainy days are good for reading and studying at least.
    @Lazaro - Kind words as always which I appreciate. I got lucky with the squirrel because a boy was feeding them so they came closer than normal.
    @Alison - Everything looks so inspiring right now, doesn't it?
    @Des - It tasted good too and didn't last long.

  12. Tes photos sont Magnifiques et ta tarte aux fraises est une pure Merveilles pour les pupilles;)

    Très joli blog bravo!! xxx

  13. Merci de ta visite et de ton commentaire - cela me fait toujours tant de plaisir quand les gens me disent qu'ils aiment mes photos.

  14. Seeing your photos and reading your words reminds me it's time to have more picnics. It's amazing how even one day of sun will lift us up. I love the strawberries photograph a lot!

  15. tu me donnes envie de visiter Berlin; ça me rappelle un peu Beyrouth d'ailleurs; tiens quand j'etais jeune, je pensais que Monica Vitti etait la femme la plus belle au monde. Tu m'as ramené longtemps en arrière.

  16. Vanessa, if you have not read it yet, you will love the book "Mr. Rosenblum's List". I will not even try to describe it--trust me.

  17. J'ai découvert que mon flux d'abonnement à ton blog ne marchait plus! J'ai raté deux posts!!!

    J'adore l'écureuil, vraiment adorable... c'est fou d'avoir pu l'approcher de si près.

    La tarte aux fraises, quel bonheur! Elle est tout simplement splendide.

    J'aime beaucoup cette photo de Monica Vitti. C'est incroyable, parce que j'ai une amie actrice (Kim) qui, de dos, lui ressemble comme deux gouttes d'eau sur cette photo. La robe, la coiffure, tout. Si bien qu'on a fini par offrir à Kim un poster de cette image, et que tous ceux qui passent chez elle s'écrient : "mais c'est toi!"

  18. your tart look superb, I always look forward to your pics,and the squirrel, oh my too cute


  19. Beautiful post! The picture of the hanging bag with the Berlin sign looked like it was smiling- too cute. I can't wait to try the strawberry tart- it looks delish!

  20. I bake a strawberry pie once a year and I still haven't complied with the ritual in 2010... I remember last year's custard to be too soft.. fingers crossed for my next try!
    And don't get me started on Monica Vitti. She's my hero. That hair...

  21. @Alexandria - I couldn't agree more.Sharing good food under a clear blue sky is the perfect afternoon for me.
    @Joumana - Adolescante j'étais complètement fascinée par Monica Vitti. Elle a une beauté si particulière mais éblouissante; c'est bien de savoir qu'on a tant de choses en commun et j'espère te voir à Berlin un jour.
    @cj - Hey thanks for the book tips, I promise to get this one soon and can't wait to tell you what I think.
    @Magda - Merci ma belle pour tous ces mots si gentils. C'est chouette cette histoire avec l'affiche et ta copine car la photo me fascine vraiment. C'est doit être bien de ressembler à Monica!
    @Bonnie - Thanks so much; squirrels are one of my favourite animals but normally I never get near them so this time, I was lucky.
    @Nicolette - That's actually what attracted me to that bag in the first place and I found it so charming. The tart was good but I should have made the custard thicker, oh well, practice makes perfect!
    @Pia - Hey don't give up now, there are way too many good recipes out there, even if raspberries are still my favourites. Smitten Kitchen has loads of amazing ones. Ah Monica, so beautiful, so fascinating, I love her hair too.

  22. I would just love a nice slice of that tart.

  23. And I'd like to share it with you :-)