Food, food and more food!

When I look at this blog I amaze myself that I’m not a walking barrel – so much of it seems to revolve around food and eating.  But then we all enjoy good food and without it our lives would be rather monotonous – I don’t think any of us would enjoy the diet of an everyday mediaeval person.

Last Sunday the Etoile Cycliste du St Chinianais had its annual summer party, by invitation only and I was lucky enough to be invited.  The party takes place in the garden of the founder of the association, a little outside St Chinian.  It’s a garden full of quirky things, and shaded by large pinion pine trees.  The guests sit at long trestle tables and cooking is done over an open fire or coals.  First there are aperitifs – drinks of various sorts accompanied by home-made nibbles.  The come the moules – mussels cooked over the coals and turned with a garden rake!  Lovely juicy mussels, washed down with white or rose wine, the juices mopped up with crusty French bread.  Just as we finish the mussels and think there’s time for a break, they start cooking the sardines – lots of them, grilled just as they are, and they come to the table crispy and piping hot. Surely that must be it now, but wait, now they start grilling pork chops and sausages!!  OK, I think I can manage a chop and a tiny bit of sausage (there are beans to go with them).  Then comes cheese, and finally a sponge cake as light as a feather, and in between main course and dessert, and after dessert there’s music and dancing.  I did feel like a barrel, so we went for a long walk and took a detour to get home! 

This week saw the arrival of the first locally grown tomatoes – delicious, juicy and RIPE!!  From Gill at Le Petit Pepiniere in Caunes Minervois I got a selection of basil plants (lemon, cinnamon, lettuce leaved, ararat, thai, greek and regular) so I decided to make a tomato and mozzarella salad, experimenting with several different basil flavours.  It was totally delicious, but I’m not sure which I prefer.  The first apricots also arrived – somewhat later than usual and even more eagerly anticipated.  For now I’m just eating them fresh, but soon enough I’ll be turning to jam and tart making!

On Wednesday I got together with a group of friends for our monthly cooking session.  This week’s theme was Asian food, and we had a ball!  On the menu were
Green onion pancakes
Temari-Zushi (rice balls with prawns or fish)
Tuna salad sushi rolls
Shiso roll Katsu (pork)
Egg rolls
Gyoza (Chinese dumplings)
Green onion pancakes
Lynn’s salad
Matcha ice cream (green tea)

Ambitious I know, but with nine pair of hands we made short work of the cooking, and of course of the eating!!  I won’t describe the preparation of the meal in detail, I’ll just leave you to drool over the pictures!  And as I’m selecting the pictures, I’m starting to feel ever so hungry, I wonder why?

Green onion pancakes


Shiso Roll Katsu

Egg Roll



and a few more pictures

and finally the gallery

7 thoughts on “Food, food and more food!

  1. Great blog about life in and around St. Chinian. Super photos. Looks like your Japanese culinary adventure was a big success. Chapeau !


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