If I were to plan my last meal, Fruits de Mer would be the main course. To me it evokes everything that is good about food: the joy of excellent ingredients, simply presented; the time it takes to eat, and the pleasure of eating in an informal environment, surrounded by friends and family. This is not a dish to be consumed in haste, or in silence, or in pretentious or intimidating surroundings, or in uncongenial company.
It requires time and leisure. It encourages conversation, co-operation, intimacy and friendship. It is the ideal thing for a large and cheery get-together – and even better for a candlelit dinner for two, with lots of chilled champagne.