20 March 2016

Not burgers

Here is the kind of sign you might reasonably expect to see in a town like Montrichard. It's not advertising hamburgers.

Produits du terroir means regional specialties. Terroir is a concept that combines notions of the specific soil and climate conditions that give an area its special character and difference. The sign is one I saw outside a shop selling, among other local products, the wines produced around here. Rillons (cooked chunks of fresh pork belly) and rillettes (rillons that have been shredded and cooked down even further, eaten like a pâté, which is potted meat) are Loire Valley pork preparations. Terrine is another word for pâté, and the ones advertised here are made from of wild game like boars, pheasants, or hares — hunting is a big part of the Loire Valley culture. Fish from the Loire, butter cookies from the nearby Sologne sub-region, and "tapped" pears, dried, flattened, and put up in jars, fill out the list.

I took photos of flowers for sale in a florist's shop on Montrichar's main street, la rue Nationale. There is a whiff of revolutionary fervor in the street name, and most towns around here have a rue Nationale. The one in Tours is the most famous. Before the 1789 revolution, it was called la rue Royale. Anyway, the florist's flowers were too pretty to pass up.

I described Montrichard as "bustling" a couple of days ago. You might not thinks that's true when you look at this photo of the main street. But, remember, it was lunchtime. A lot of businesses still close their doors for a couple of hours at noontime. People aren't out on the street — they are sitting at the table either at home or in a restaurant, enjoying some of those regional specialties. That's what we are going to do at noon today. I'll be cooking a pintade, which is French for guinea hen.


  1. The produits on the sign all sound pretty wonderful. On first glance, I thought the board said terreur not terroir, a pretty big difference. Those daisies sure are photogenic.

  2. Enfin, un ptit moment passé sur vos blogs, mes Amis... Je ne sais pas quand tu es rentré de chez ta Maman ni comment elle va... Alors, je vais chercher sur ton blog... Grosses bises

  3. Has anyone living ever eaten poires tapées? If I recall correctly (but I usually don't), I believe they were used to combat scurvy on French ships.

    I have a slight interest in trying them, but the only recipe I saw using them didn't appeal to me.

  4. Beautiful flowers for sure. The last photo makes me want to go shopping in France.

    A friend is just back from a bus tour of France bearing macarons...She got to experience hurricane force winds at Mont ST Michel- the bus was not allowed to drive up the road. The walkers had to link arms to keep from being blown over. The March weather didn't prevent the group from having a great trip though.

  5. Very "France" photos! They transport me :)


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