The title is supposed to say "A Good Day" and it WAS. My friend Alicia asked me if I would accompany her to visit a french woman she was meeting in Ann Arbor. Alicia was meeting with this woman to ask her about french food and culture for a report for one of her classes. WHY NOT? We arrived and met Cecilia. Cecilia is originally from France and makes pastries out of her licensed commercial at-home kitchen in Ann Arbor; most noted for her macarons (not to be confused with macaroons). While in her kitchen, Cecilia had us try something.
They were small, rice krispie-esque things. They also could be confused for the rocks in the bottom of aquariums. She had two pink ones, a white one, and a dark purple one. The pink ones were rose and lilac, the white jasmine, and the purple, violet. Turns out, they were crystallized flowers; LITERAL FLOWERS! She put one of them in a glass of water and IT EXPANDED INTO A FLOWER! She scattered a few on the counter and I was eating them like it was no one's business. The violet was my FAVORITE. I can't even explain what it tasted like, but it was so good. The other ones tasted like the smell of whatever flower they were. I bet my stomach looks like The Secret Garden right now. It's probably blossoming as I type this.
We talked about life and Cecilia explained her outlook and I was captivated. I was captivated by how strong, empowering, and how modest she was. She's exceptional at what she does, she's kind, and she cares about her clients and her product. She was so hospitable too. She showed us the art in her house (which she has an eclectic mix of) and showed me some art she's done herself (and she's not bad either). She asked Alicia and I if we would like to stay for tea; though I'd never had tea, we graciously accepted and Cecilia led us to her tea room.
As you may recall, I've been hoping for a tea party since THIS post. My dream became a reality today. The tea room was this lovely, quaint room that had flowers and giant windows; you can see it in the photos. We sat down and she brought out a tea pot with nice illustrations on it, saucers that had indents for your fun cups, and TINY spoons. Incredible! I was so excited! I kept lifting my pinkie in a dignified sort of way. Then, we dug into our macarons.
Today was a big day for me because I tried new things. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am PICKY. I was nervous about one of the macarons because it was white and covered with green tea powder. When Cecilia had us smell the green tea in the kitchen, I thought it smelled like seaweed or aquariums; it definitely smelled aquatic. The other two, violet (a beautiful, pastel purple) and milk chocolate with orange (a sort of orange creamsicle color), I would be fine with. I tried the green tea one first. The taste and texture of macarons is hard to describe. If you've never had one, try one. These pastries are huge in France. It's almost like a cookie, but not quite. The green tea one wasn't bad, but it was different. I then tried the orange and chocolate and it was incredible. The flavor was so BOLD and I saved the violet for last because I knew if i liked the flower treats, I would love the macaron (and I did). They're very light, but with lots of texture and flavors and they are delicious.
We spoke to Cecilia for sometime about French culture, food, dining, schooling, and etiquette. She said in France, it's about the flavor more so than the presentation and I feel that's where we, as Americans, are flawed. We focus more on the appearance than the quality and flavor. I have to applaud Cecilia's french flair and background that she brings here and imbibes into her pastries. I was on cloud 9. I'm counting this tea party as an unknown early birthday gift (since my birthday is in 11 DAYS)! We stayed for awhile, but after tea and sampling, we said goodbye.
I'm happy because I like meeting new people, experiencing new things, and learning. If anyone is interested in doing a class or wants to make a trip out to get some pastries, let me know. Here's some photos in the tea room: