They take eating outside seriously in the South of France. The house we rented in Provence, like most in the region, included a terrace. Right off the living room and the bedrooms was a beautifully stoned area covered by an overhead arbor of trailing wisteria. It was an irresistibly inviting spot to read, snooze, or enjoy a meal. Our family loved snacking and lunching at the round metal table surrounded by those quintessential French folding chairs. Many afternoons we spread tapenade on crusty baguette slices, tried different cheeses, and sipped rosé, and midday we often savored lunch outdoors.
One of the easiest déjeuners I prepared included Goat Cheese and Radish Panini. I spread slices of good peasant bread with creamy chèvre scented with lemon, and then added a layer of paper-thin radish slices, and a mound of arugula. There was no panini machine in our kitchen so I simply cooked the sandwiches in a heavy skillet coated with olive oil until the cheese melted and the bread was lightly browned and crisp. Olives, French pickles, and chips made simple garnishes.