Showing posts with label a French collection. Show all posts
Showing posts with label a French collection. Show all posts

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

A circular, culinary blog


I have lived and breathed the French language for a very long time. Yet, every once in a while,  a word comes my way that requires a bit of extra thought. I don't mean the words that are new to me but that I understand because of their context, or words that I have forgotten and that I can jiggle to the surface. I mean words that I know, but that don't seem to make sense in context. Writing about how to make a baguette last blog led me down several cooking related paths including to the salt farms of Brittany and the following:

La Fleur de Sel, Le Guérandais, est délicatement cueillie, selon une méthode traditionnelle millénaire, à la surface de l'eau des oeillets par les paludiers de Guérande. 

But, un oeillet is a carnation (or an eyelet). Of course, a carnation is a flower and the fine salt (La Fleur de Sel) that is being collected is so-called because of the flower-like patterns of the crystals that form in the salt crust as the seawater evaporates. But, this is somewhat of a false path.*

In fact, in the salt harvesting process, sea water passes through a succession of ponds and it is the final set of ponds that are known as the 'œillets'. Is this more related to the winding related to eyelets?





An interview with chef, Jamie Oliver, in which he talked about his mentor, a lady named Rose, came up in conversation. She was strong, kind, clever, someone who, according to Jamie, favoured simplicity and taught him to focus always on what he could do better. A 'salt of the earth' sort of person.

And then, absent-mindedly, I picked up a cook book that I have had on my coffee table for a very long time, but have probably never done anything more than flick through distractedly. I like the idea of cooking. I love the idea of being a good cook. But, sadly that is where the passion seems to start and stop. This time, though, I read the About section of the cookbook; a human story, which is of far more interest to me, and learnt that the writer/chef Patricia Wells and her husband's

"...love of France grew...Almost before we'd unpacked our bags in Provence, we had more French friends than we had made in all our time in Paris. Within a year, we could no longer even remember life before Provence. For us, it symbolised all the essential elements of happiness we sought in life - friends, family, food, and feasts."

Now, this was something that I could really relate to, and took me on a bigger wander around her book...which led to the Fleur de Sel.

Strangely enough, it was not just me baking last weekend, My FB posts attracted return comments from both Annette at A French Collection and Mardi from eat.live.travel.write who is about to publish a...cookbook.

*as far as I can tell - please do let me know if there is indeed a connection.

***Purchase your copy of 'But you are in France, Madame', which takes you with us on our French adventure, at Amazon, here ***

Monday, 16 April 2018

A chat about our French journey

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldjH19EFVGU&feature=youtu.be

The steps: The words - The book - The promotion - The surprises

I have meandered along this path, not altogether blindly, but with only a vague destination, no route map or compass, a very small support crew (my husband) and many passages up dead-ends, steep cliffs, never-ending, unremittingly straight roads, in earshot of the happening parties just out of sight over the next crest.

Thankfully, along the lonely way, people have happened along to say 'hi', including Annette, from A French Collection (above). Both Australian, we connected through my book and her website, discovered that we live only 170 kms apart (not far in Australian terms), have three children each of roughly the same ages and share a somewhat inexplicable attachment to France.

We met up for the first time last week and, after a simple lunch, we sat and chatted in front of the camera. If you are curious, you only need click on the link here, or above, to find out more.

As always, copies of 'But you are in France, Madame', which take you with us on our French adventure are easily downloadable at Amazon, here or send me an email on cb222@me.com if you'd prefer a print copy.

Lastly, let me say a sincere thank-you to everyone who has been a part of this publishing journey to date; your encouragements and heart-warming appearances at the sidelines have kept me going and have motivated me to see how far we can go.