By now you ought to know that I am a sentimental fool, and equally so about the places I’ve been as I am about the people in my life. I thought I might share some my favorite summer vacations since they have ended up also being some of my favorite posts (a thinly veiled ploy to keep you entertained while we finish enjoying this holiday). Click on the link below the photo to read the original blog post.

Clear Lake Iowa

So many of our happiest summer memories took place in Clear Lake, Iowa at my parents’ lake house. Going to Clear Lake was like stepping back into a more innocent era where people left their front doors unlocked and kids roamed the neighborhood playing together safely without cause for worry.

Cote d’ Azur

My culinary awareness was awakened in the south of France. To this day I’m transported back there merely by the aroma of lamb roasting with herbs de Provence, the first lucius spoon full of a rich Bouillabaisse, or that fragrant burst of flavor from a mouth full of ratatouille. Film festival, fabulous art, Formula One races, hillside villas overlooking azure water and palm tree lined avenues – what’s not to love about the Cote d’Azure?

Croatia

Dubrovnik is one of the most picturesque places I think I’ve ever been. Croatia is steeped in history with a cuisine as varied as the countries it borders. Tatjana and I would return in a heartbeat given half a chance!


Barbados

Barbados is my favorite place to unwind, relax, and have a blast. Lazy days bathing on stunning white sand beaches dotted with elegant Oliver Messel designed homes, frolicking in the crystal clear water next to sea turtles or exploring the colorful reefs, dining on meals that get your taste buds dancing before your body follows suit in the numerous open air nightclubs that spill onto the beach. Fashion shows and polo matches to keep you from missing the social life at home all make for a casual chic that compliments my ideal lifestyle.

East Africa

Back then, Africa meant an adventure that helped me find an audacious lust for life again. Now it means finding new ways to support The Children’s Hunger Crisis Fund as the East African people face the worst drought in 60 years. I hope you will donate your time and/or money to cook in unison with me on Sunday September 18th, 2011. Please click here to participate, or here to make donations.

Here is a yummy sandwich that reminds me of Provence to munch on while you reminisce about your most enjoyable and/or life-changing experiences traveling. Care to share?  I may spend hours reminiscing about the places I’ve been, but I’m always dreaming about the places I have yet to discover.

SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS:

2 freshly baked baguettes
4 ounces Boursin cheese
2 ripe pears, peeled, cored, and sliced
1/2 cup arugula
1/2 pound San Danielle ham

DIRECTIONS:

1. Slice the baguettes in half lengthwise.

2. Spread 1 ounce of Boursin cheese on the bottom half of each sandwich. Top with a thin layer of the San Danielle ham, a layer of pear slices, and arugula. Place top piece of bread on, and cut both sandwiches in half to make 4 sandwiches.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS:

For me this is a meal in itself, but for those with a heartier appetite, serve with potato chips or crudites.

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