Be a King or Queen for an Evening

Last month, our ten year old daughter, who is in love with Louis IV and all of his trappings begged us to have a Royal dinner party in which everyone came dressed as royalty, gave themselves royal names, and ate in a royal fashion. Putting her off for longer than we would like to admit, we sat down one day and talked about what this dinner party would be like.


"Royal costumes! Everyone has to come dressed like some royalty. They can be a King, a Prince, a Duke, or a Countess. I am of course, Comtess Zoe-Pascale de Saxe Roux of Languedoc, Rousillion."




Now, being a tween she was also aware of the fact that some of her friends might think she was "uncool" and therefore wanted to invite family friends. At first we tried to dissuade her, but realized she had actually come up with a solution to the problem she felt (operative word, felt) she had which was not to be "uncool."


In her eloquent Franglais, she crafted the Royal invitation and sent it out to a few family friends asking them to RSVP with their titles and come appropriately dressed. To our surprise, all the invitees answered with hysterical messages that asked, "Where should we park the carriage and horses?" "Will there be water for the horses?"


Realizing how most of us get dressed up, but once a year at Halloween, the idea of doing something different (operative word again) doing something different, brought out the child in each adult and kid.


The menu was extravagant as Louis IV actually ate 40 courses. Counting each tartine, we came close to all 40 courses.


That Afternoon - Preparation


The afternoon of the party, we started cooking at noon as the bouef bourgnian had to simmer for 4 hours and the tiramisu chill for an additional 3 hours. This is not typically how we cook at all.


This however, was part of our party. Shopping, cooking, and setting up the table as a family allowed us to share something unique together. Shedding rose petals on the table for the royal decoration, choosing the colorful glassware, and writing up the menu brought out the creative part that we miss often in our day to day lives. Teaching Zoe how to follow a recipe (and lick the bowl) and having her involved every step of the way allowed us to do something as a family that was different, a change, and lots of ohhs and aahs over each Royal announcement of the next course.  


Following is the menu presented to everyone by the Comtess (countess in French)


Royal Dinner Menu


hosted by Comtess Zoé-Pascale de Languedoc ,Rousillon et Provence.

Tartine divrse du monde connu.(tartines with bruschetta, artichoke spread, goat cheese, olive tapenade, smoked salmon)

 Soupe de la region diverse de provence. (White bean provencale soup_

Boeuf a la Bourgnion avec pomme de la terre.

 Risotto aux morilles

 Salade verte maché pecan avec vinaigrette

 Different fromage des differentes region de France

 Desserts SURPRISE!  (homemade Tiramisu made by Zoe and her dad).

 Thé du nouveau monde.

 I hope you will like our dinner.!



(note: a beautiful table minus the plastic sparkling water bottles)



The Party

The guests arrived as Royalty should  at 6:30pm and we rolled out the red carpet as they sauntered in. Champagne, greetings, and conversation continued throughout the night as course after course was served. Unlike the French, our friends aren't used to eating many long courses, but each one managed to do so and exclaimed over every dish as it was announce by Zoe-Pascale and slowly rolled out to the Royal dining table.

Finishing our last course of Tiramisu and Tea at 11pm, the guests exclaimed  that they had never been to such a Royal dinner. The theme, the dressing up, the conversation, and the food was fantastic and moving out of the comfort zone of our routine was a major highlight.

The only downside was the royal servants were on vacation and Jean and I ended up cleaning up past midnight. Next time, I will have to make sure they are around to help!