from Guy Debord

To Raoul Vaneigem
15 August [1968]
Dear Raoul:

We communicate to you the most notable results of our rural culinary experiments.[1] What follows concerns a clearly engaged meal, which still isn't completed in its totality.

(The amounts anticipate four dinners, but are solid.)


Ingredients: 1 kg of tomatoes, celery, bouquet garni, garlic, chervil, salt, pepper, Cayenne, creme fraiche, 8 slabs[2] of bread rubbed with garlic butter.

Brown the cut-up tomatoes in oil. Season (salt, pepper, Cayenne, garlic). Reduce. When the tomatoes are cooked, add three-quarters of a litre of water. Incorporate the bouquet garni. Simmer for 20 minutes.

Serve on the slabs, which have been crisped; add the creme fraiche.


(Pierre Le Graveleur[4] is charged with creating it.)


Ingredients: one slice of beef fillet per person, the parsley butter called maitre d'Hotel, croutons.

Cut each slice into 2 cm-thick fillets. Cook on a grill or stove, for four on each side. Serve on croutons with the parsley butter.


Ingredients: 1 kg spinach, 100 g[rams] of grated gruyere, 50 g of melted butter, 4 eggs, red pepper to taste.

Remove the stems from the leaves. Wash the leaves several times, then boil them in salted water, uncovered, for a quarter of an hour (around 2 litres of water for 1 kg of spinach). Drain. Squeeze, sift and arrange spinach. The water must be salted 10 g per litre.

Mix the spinach with the grated gruyere. Pour the valor of the 50 g of melted butter on the plate. Put in a pre-heated oven for 10 minutes. In the style of an urbanist, empty 4 eggs, previously poached, on the plate from the oven. Garnish with red pepper.


(A meringue glazed with chocolate, garnished with cherries and blazing with new vodka.)

See you soon,

(If you plan to return before the end of the month, come by Les Vosges. The place is most charming -- I mean the "charm" of the black forests. Salut, Alice Ho-vert.)

[1] Among the rare distractions offered by this retreat in Les Vosges (a forest house owned by a friend), except for a jazz record untiringly played and re-baptized by this usage the "Round Field Blues." [Translator: the situationists had retired to Belgium in early August 1968 to escape prosecution in France and to write The Situationists and Enrages in the Occupations Movement.] On 23 August, a telegram saying "Read Le Monde -- imprudently sent from Paris by Rene Vienet so as to warn of the entrance of tanks into Prague -- provoked the encircling of the place by the police. Quite fortunately, the government eventually freed those who were supposedly going to reconstitute the [radical] movements that had been dissolved by the decree of 12 June 1968.

[2] Translator: the word employed here is paves, which also means paving stones, such as those ripped up and either added to barricades or thrown at the police during May 1968.

[3] The Gay-Lussac Croustade, a dish realized later on by Pierre Lepetit, consisted of a splendid flaming lobster served on a bed of mussels and hot chesnuts, and dedicated to the glory of the barricades of the rue Guy-Lassac.

[4] Nickname given to Pierre Lepetit, playing upon the qualities of engraver and thrower of [paving] stones.

[5] Pierre Grappin, Dean of the College at Nanterre, nicknamed Grappin-the-Bludgeon after allowing the police to intervene on campus on 26 January 1968.

[6] Translator: a delicious image: the Sorbonne in flames!

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 3, 1965-1968. Footnotes by Alice Debord, except where noted. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! September 2005.)

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