Provencal Birthday Lunch

I had such fun hosting a special birthday lunch for my friend CIndy earlier this week and found inspiration for the menu from the wonderful trip my mom and I took to France in September last year. We stayed at Le Lavadin in Provence where we enjoyed many delectable meals prepared by the proprietress, Georgia Perrin, as you can see in this post about the amazing breakfasts she served during our stay.

For our birthday lunch, I made two recipes that we enjoyed while at Le Levandin:  a delicious simple vegetable soup called Provencal Pistou that is served with a flavorful dollop of pesto to start, as well as a savory Tart Tartin a la Tomate . It is a pretty and colorful tomato tart with goat cheese, herbs de provence and olive tapenade that can be served warm or room temperature. 

The ladies at Cindy's birthday lunch just loved the simple green salad that was served along side the tart. The recipe for this salad came from my sweet friend, Liz, who made it for a dinner we shared at her home almost ten years ago (I still have the recipe printed from an email she sent me when I asked for it way back when). It is a very easy salad to make ahead- you put the dressing in the bottom of the bowl, add the lettuce top with herbs and let it sit until you are ready to serve it. Despite its simplicity, it tastes just delicious.

I got inspiration to make Ina's fabulous Chocolate Ganache Cake for dessert from my dear friend Abbie who has served this cake many times - she was right to describe it as very easy to make and incredibly rich and decadent, a perfect ending to a fun and celebratory lunch!

I just love getting inspiration from my friends, travels and all the other amazing blogs out there and hope you get some inspiration from me as well! It's fun to share!

The table was set with a tablecloth from Provence 

Provençal Pistou (Vegetable Soup with pesto)

Tarte Tatin a la Tomate

Simple Green Salad that is so delicious~

Chocolate Ganache Cake 

Happy birthday Cindy!

The cake was perfect with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and fresh raspberries

What a fun afternoon for us all

Follow the links for

Recipes for a Provençal Lunch~

(just click on the titles for a link to the recipes)


  1. Quite the fancy lunch. Any left overs?
    Happy Birthday Cindy!

  2. Hi Joy! I've been reading your blog for a while now. Super inspiring...I love this menu. I'm going to have to try it on friends here. And yay Abbie for the delicious cake idea :)