Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Off to the Minervois

Whilst the timing is not ideal, it is also very good. I am off South on the French railway to a wedding which I have been involved with helping organise with various things throughout the year. Cannot wait to see it all come together and the lovely couple have a wonderful day. So excited for them!
A wedding fit for a Princess indeed it will be!

I plan to get some much needed fun and relaxation with friends, staying in the village of Mailhac where we used to live before dashing back here to move into the Hameau finally within 2 days. We have a deadline that cannot be shifted!
Who says that having no bathroom, stairs, bedroom blah blah blah is necessary to make a comfy home problem?!!

Will have no net access very soon so posts will be scant for a while!

Bon weekend, wish me luck ! I will be wishing the bride and groom luck. Ah, a good wedding is so good for the soul!

Monday, 22 June 2009

Cidre – a plenty in the North

I am occasionally trying the Breton cider which accompanies crepes and is traditionally served in ceramic bowls/cups. There are many local ciders here and they tend to have a smooth creamy taste in my limited tasting experience. Anyway it depends which one you try of course. I have been doing a bit of research on the production. Here is some info………………..

Until the mid-20th century, cider was the second most-consumed drink in France (after wine) but there was an increase in the popularity of beer and this then displaced cider's market share outside traditional cider-producing regions.

We have a cider press in one of our buildings. I think it was built inside as cannot see how they got it in through the tiny front door. This is a shame as would love to have it as a feature in the garden. ( will not be producing own cider yet) Not high on the list of things to do however.

Breton cider making employs the technique of keeving (from the French cuvée). In keeving, calcium chloride and a special enzyme are added to the pressed apple juice, causing protein in the juice to precipitate to the top for removal. This reduces the amount of protein available to the yeast, starving it and therefore causing the cider to finish fermenting while sugar is still available. The result is a sweeter drink at a lower alcohol level but still retaining the full flavour of the apples, without dilution.
I never knew that! Interesting , better informed yet?

Doux is a sweet cider, usually up to 3% in strength. 'Demi-Sec' is 3–5% and Cidre Brut is a strong dry cider of 5% alcohol and above. Most French ciders are sparkling

Here endeth the reading lesson on cidre for the moment. Get out there and try the tastebud test!. Breton and Normandy cider wins hands down over a Strongbow but the West Country, well I am not sure what they would have to say about French cider over their wonderful Scrumpy. There is room for more than one good cider in the world of course!

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Lack of comms

So sorry no blog update. Work on the project has taken priority and by the time we drag our bones back it is very late at night. We did have 3 hrs off 2 weekends ago and collapsed at Lamor Plage.
We do now have underfloor heating laid and a concrete floor on top, and found a roofer to come and finish that. Wow, feel like progress is being made. Cannot wait to get in there!
We then have moved temporary accommodation and had no internet access or phone!
I am off to Guernsey next week so will be busy there but will see what I can do with the blog!! So there we are a quick update indeed and I will back with chat very soon!!
A bientôt xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx