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Day of the gourmand and the French dna

Wiki says – A gourmand is a person who either takes great pleasure in food,
a person given to excess in the consumption of food and drink, a greedy eater,
or a ravenous eater.

What I didn’t tell you – on my last visit to France, I endured

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Baguette mornings and some evenings,

I worked through these

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I suffered these

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Come to Mama!

But I need to bring up in today’s blog something of the French dna that I have
observed during my visits to this country. As many of you know, the French is
going through a wake-up call after the events of the past week … the horrific
deaths of the editor and staff of their satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo,
at the hands of terrorist gunmen.
Their September 11.

I’ve never met a French I didn’t like. A bit of an exaggeration, but …
in my halting, sometimes stammering French, they’ve responded, engaged with me,
in their halting, sometimes stammering English.

The French are a proud people. Proud of their heritage, history, culture, and arts.

The French work. Tirelessly. The proof is in their bread –

Meet Ridha Kadher, the winner of the best baguette for 2013.
Out of 203 Parisian bakers, he won €4,000 and earned the honour of supplying
baguettes to the Elysées Palace, the presidential residence, for a whole year.

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When asked for a photo after our chat,
he gladly posed for one but not before asking his wife to join him.
Sweeeeet.

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Mr. Kadher, with roots from Tunisia, came to France as a young boy,
and started baking at fifteen, working side by side with his brother.
Indeed, he has come a long way. He now owns his own boulangerie,
Au Paradis du Gourmand.

His secret is « hard work and his mother’s recipe, a 24-hour ‘rest’ to allow the dough
to absorb water and hydrate for his traditional baguette, (5 hours for a regular one) ».

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via RKadher

Au Paradis du Gourmand,
156 Rue Raymond Losserand,
75014 Paris France,
+33 9 62 30 47 13

Photos (1)-(7) ©vmanzo-w

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Lavander

Summer’s fun when you’re at the market

In Provence, France.

I cannot let summer pass by without a visit to this dreamy part of France. Let the photos speak for themselves.

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Driving through plane tree-lined roads,

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And lavander fields,

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The buying or just-looking crowd starts to arrive

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To linger and discuss the day’s events over coffee,

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Over croissants and sweets,

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Over jam-load of jellies,

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And juices.

Then I shop.

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Their colourful wares never fail to catch my eyes.

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I think of spaces to fill

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Or hearts to touch.

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I taste bruschetta

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Or garlic aioli and dried chiles.

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Monsieur entices you to a taste of his tapenades

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While Madame poses for another photo opportunity.

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A rule of thumb at the markets – do not touch, do not squeeze;

ask for assistance and Madam or Monsieur will gladly choose for you –

will you have it today? the next few days?

Oh yes, I’ve been ‘reprimanded’.

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The art of presentation at the market.

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The melons of Cavaillon are intoxicatingly sweet and juicy.

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There were dried fruits too.

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Those spices and their aromas fill the air.

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Which ones to go to market with?

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Then the music starts to play

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And hunger sets in

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Paella!

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Roast chickens – chicken from Brest . . . . .

Shall we take a break . . . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

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