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Shopping in France when you have eight guests staying can be an intense, frustrating, long and even dramatic experience as happened one day last week. A family in the village of Thezan produce what is simply the best Asparagus around. They sell this from their garage which they have adapted to a small asparagus production with a washer and a sorting machine.
First let me confess that I am not the gardener in Le Presbytère- that role is certainly taken by my wife Sile. I am called upon from time to time when there is heavy work involved but, after forty three years of marriage, we have discovered our own happiest spaces, mine in the kitchen and hers in the garden.
Martin is adding La Cuisine d'Été ('Summer Kitchen') to his Chambre d'Hôtes
This month Martin tells a curious tale of coincidences bound up with famous chefs, writers, and an unlikely would-be-chef writer...
The French entertain in a different way than us. They do have Dinner Parties as the Irish do from time to time, but much more often they just ask people around for an “Apero”- always called this it is actually short for an Aperitif, that ritual drink the French have to herald in the evening before starting dinner
This month, Martin shares some of the changes for the better that he found in Ireland's food and drink sector when back visiting family this Christmas - and dares to suggest that we may even be ahead of France in some ways at the moment...
As Christmas comes round again and I inevitably start planning on making it really easy this year (this never works) my mind runs to all the foods which have become a compulsory addition to the table for Christmas dinner and I start thinking of the ones I could discreetly eliminate.
This month: Martin extols the virtues of an heroic piece of low-tech kitchen equipment - his Passe-Légumes
Euro-Toques chef Martin Dwyer, is much missed in Ireland since he and his wife Sile sold their eponymous restaurant in Waterford and moved to France. They now live in the Languedoc, where they take guests - and feed them very well. This month Martin shares his unique Pain Fruité du Presbytère