The Irish Foodie by Maggie Griffin
Loving Languedoc - the Irish foodie falls for delicious tastes of France
Posted on Sunday, October 07, 2012 at 06:40 AM
- Brandy butter cookies recipe - an excellent solution to using up this Christmas leftover
- Bûche de Noël - delicious Christmas recipe for a chocolate Yule log
- Candied peel - making your own to give those warm citrus notes to your Christmas baking
- Her shell - Sausage the pig's journey from the farm to the butchers
- Days in November and baking for Christmas - mincemeat recipe for perfect traditional mince pies
|Jarret de veau|
Plane trees (Platanus occidentalis) growing along roadsides with their very distinctive mottled cream and grey patterned bark.
In the Languedoc, roads are most likely to be flanked with fields of vines. The primary grape varieties grown - Carignan, Mouevedre, Cinsault and Syrah amongst others.
They all combine to create some of the most magical wines, two of which I really enjoyed this trip - Picpoul de Pinet and Pic St. Loup.
The iconic cassoulet is the dish of the region. It's hearty, filling and oh so tasty combining haricot beans with pork, duck and sausage. Wandering around the Cité of Carcassonne I came across this poster on a wall.
This trip I had lunch in the two star Michelin restaurant Le Parc in Carcassonne. The lunch was a set menu although it was possible to dine à la carte. For the quality of food we received it was incredibly reasonable for €35 with a complimentary glass of wine.
I was staying in the lovely old medieval town of Pézenas, In peak season this town is thronged with tourists, but in late September it is a much more pleasant experience. My son works here as a chef and it is really a small village where all the locals know each other. For this reason you get a very different perspective on what life is like than if you breezed in on a day trip.
|Aubergines of every variety|
The produce from the region is fresh and tastes of sunshine. Fish - dorade (sea bream), loup de mer (sea bass) and morue (cod). Try brandade de morue which is a salt cod dish mixed with mashed potato, garlic and olive oil. Aubergines (egg plant) in season with their purple hues nestle between every variety of peach, tomatoes and then later figs and mangos in the market every Saturday.
It would be difficult to say that the Languedoc is better than any other region in France, but it is special and well worth a visit. I'm loving exploring and getting to know the area a little bit more on every trip.
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