Le Croquant de Sarlat.

Le Croquant de Sarlat is a dry and crunchy, caramelised sugar ‘biscuit’ like treat, often made with almonds or walnuts. It is mainly made in the South West of France with each pâtisserie having their own, closely guarded variation on the recipe.

It was only a couple of months ago that Paul and I first saw these biscuits at Pâtisserie Massoulier in Sarlat so, feeling the need to assuage a sweet tooth we just had to try them.

Croquant is French for crisp or crunchy, the ‘biscuit’ is often named ‘crunchy Perigord’ and they are delicious.

 
The ‘biscuits’ may be large or small, plain or with nuts.

 
They are something like a brittle, hard and perfect to crumble over ice cream, layered into parfaits, or to eat as they are.

 
More tempting delights at Pâtisserie Massoulier.
33 Rue de la République, 24200 Sarlat-la-Canéda.
 
 
Event:-. The bunting and flags are flying, the Bumper Cars are all set up to go in La Place de La Liberty. Daglan Fête starts on Friday 18th August.

 
 

Daglan.

Preparations for Le Fête de la Saint-Louis and the Tourist Office!

The Daglan Tourist Office/Museum is one place we have not covered much in our blog. With this in mind we set out to rectify the omission. However on our walk to the Tourist Office we became a little side tracked with the preparations for the Fête de la Saint-Louis which will be held this weekend. The bunting was already in place, then came the flags showing the themes of past Fêtes.

No plants were harmed during the taking of this photograph

 
Here we have a navigation flag indicating the theme of the 2003 Fête.
 

Tourist office and museum

If you are ever visiting Daglan do pop into the Tourist Office where you can pick up lots of information about the area.

The Tourist Office/Museum is open throughout the Spring and Summer, 10 till 12.30 and 2 till 4. closed Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

 
At the rear of the tourist office is a vineyard where there is a display of antique farm equipment and a variety of grapes.

The children from the Primary School in Daglan harvest the grapes in the Autumn.

Grapes are rich in vitamin C and B, glucose, fructose and have many trace elements such as calcium so have many health benefits. Not forgetting of course, they are great to eat and to drink.

 
I was once a dress designer before I became a Forensic Psychologist so this display of vintage sewing machines was fascinating for me.

You will find antique household and farm implements, instructions for dry stone walling and construction of dry stone huts for which the village is famous.

You will also see pictures of Daglan , this is a vintage La Place de la Liberté. Im not sure when it was taken but looking at the car I would suggest the 1920s

Not much has changed except that the tower is missing from the house in the middle of the picture and the small Boulangerie is now closed. The new Boulangerie is to be found across the road from the Square.

Entry to the museum is free.

Another view of the place de la Liberté You can just see our home in this picture.
Picture from the Daglan Mairie.

 
 

Event:- Fête de la Saint Louis 18th to 21st August in Daglan.

 
 

Le Derrière

The renovation of the utility room at the rear of our home in Daglan is now complet, it took a while but I am so happy with the result.

As you can see from the picture below the utility room was made of steel and fibreglass, a horrible sight which sunlight light was unable to enter even in the height of Summer, leaving the utility room dark and dismal.

This eyesore just had to go.

First came the new roof, also fibreglass and steel that needed replacing. Paul laid down wood and fitted shingles which were a surplus from a friends renovation work. Thank you Angus they work a treat, as the last couple of nights have proven, completely waterproof. In the above picture Paul was working in the extreme 40+ degrees centigrade heat of a hot Summers day so a little shade was needed (top right).

Then it was guttering and down pipe, seen here with the new wood cladding.

Starting to replace the fibreglass panels and voila, we have light.

What a difference it makes to be able to see in and out.

Almost finished, Paul also panelled the inside of the utility room.

Looking great, Our cat Cleo loves to sit on top of the tumble drier and watch the birds in the courtyard.

 

On Hot Summer Nights

During the months of July and August the villages in the area host their “Marches Nocturnes”, which are a brilliant way of experiencing the local produce and culture of the region. What could be better on hot Summer nights than food, wine, music, dance and most of all excellent company.

During the evening markets tables are set up around a central square or along the main road of the villages and vendors sell everything you need for a good meal, including the excellent wine of the region. There is usually live music or a DJ and dancing well into the evening. Which is what we did in St Cyprien and St Pompon.

Saint Cyprien

Not even a rain shower stopped the revelry in St Cyprien.
 

Sherry and Angus ready for their dinner
 

Brilliant musicians topped the evening.
 

Saint Pompon

Such a delicious choice of food.
 

Wow, we had to try a selection of the scrumptious desserts above.
 

This gentleman danced around the bottles, sang, played an instrument of four harmonica’s, plus castanets.
 

You meet such a lot of interesting people. The couple at the end of our table were on holiday from the North of France. We were telling them about the places of interest in the area, including Daglan of course.
 

Angus and I had to get up and dance YMCA, great fun.
 

Boogie Night for Sherry and I. We had such a good time that we are all going to St Pompon again this Saturday… see you there.

You need to arrive early for a good seat and remember to take your own cutlery.
 
 

Events :-

It is that time of year again, four nights of no sleep but boy do we have fun.


 
 

Would Paella fit through the letter box?

Food glorious food, or rather “Promenade en Gastronomy Daglan 2017”. Our first impression of the event was the unmistakable aroma of roasting chicken and paella which permeated our home last Sunday morning. Our cat Angel sitting by the front door and licking her lips was also a sure sign that the Gastronomy Sunday was up and running.

The Paella and roast chicken stall made using our front door interesting to say the least and keeping the shutters closed reduced the temptation for our cats to go on secret raids. I had visions of Angel dragging a whole roast chicken home.

The side door was also temporarily blocked by a large white van being unloaded. No problem we waited for the lane to clear to enjoy the experience.

For Sunday lunch we could have lowered a basket from the balcony.

 
Le Place De La Liberté was packed with stalls offering various types of food and drink.

 
Long queues of locals and tourists were forming to buy the produce.

 
Tempted by truffles, these looked so good.

 
The forest materialised the day before for the truffle dog demonstration. Such a gorgeous dog who found the truffles in record time, but I think that the aroma of chicken, sausage and paella was a great distraction.

 
The Boulangerie stall selling various types of bread.

 
One simply cannot have a Gourmand Sunday without garlic.

 
Or wine, this is just one of the many stalls selling wine.

 
Perhaps a little too much wine (or beer), but it looked like great fun.

 
 
Events :-

Dominique ALLAËRT is displaying his wonderful watercolours.
See and buy them at l’Ancien Presbytère, Daglan until the 26th August.
Dominique ALLAËRT, Aquarelliste.

 
 

Helping Hands.

My roving reporter Paul was on hand to capture the “helping hands” a few days ago. Imagine the scene if you will, a large lorry arrives in the square, loaded with stock for the Supermarket in the village. When voices were heard, “oh no we can not unload”, but in French off course.

What do you do?

Send out a distress call to the local builders yard of course.

Freytet, building material supplier.

Were soon on hand with a forklift truck.

I am always amazed at how helpful people are in our village. The stock unloaded and in the store is ready for another week of the tourist season.

Remember that for the summer season the 8 à Huit supermarket is open every day including lunch hour, except on Sunday when closes for lunch then opens again in the afternoon. They sell an excellent range of products from fresh, chilled, frozen and tinned foods, to wine, beer, milk etc.
 

Shared Garden Project

Shared gardens was developed by the children in the village Primary School has part of the common land development scheme, which was organised by our Marie this year in the residence of the convent.

All completely pesticide free and organic, grown to perfection.
 

Event :-

Promenade en Gastronomie this Sunday in Daglan.
Delicious food and wine to savour and enjoy. Will be served at the various stalls around the village this Sunday. Not to be missed is a truffle dog demonstration that will take place in La Place de la Liberty.

The Lock in…

I had a very funny and interesting phone call from Paul a few days ago, it went like this, “Chris, I’m going to be late for lunch, I have been locked in the DIY store”.

There are many places that I would love to be locked into a chocolatier, patisserie, to name just two. The DIY store, never… because I do seem to loose the will to live after a few minutes of entering one. However, Paul has this kind of delight when he needs to go to the DIY store, so to be locked inside one was like a child being locked in a candy store.


How this happened was simple. Unlike England all of the stores in this area and in fact most areas of France close for lunch. Which means that you must leave by a certain time, the problem is that it is not the same time for each store. Some stores close at twelve others at twelve thirty, others at one. Then there is the problem of when the store re-opens in the afternoon, some stores have a two hour lunch, others two and a half hours and others three hours. The best bet I have found is to always be out of a store by twelve o’clock.

Unfortunately for Paul the staff had indeed closed for lunch. There he was busy looking at items when the lights went out. He did shout and wave at the monitors to no avail. So having found himself a comfortable sofa in a display area he sat and waited. Paul was lucky for the Manager came back after about an hour, spotted him and let him out.

After I had recounted the above to a friend of ours he said that he felt left out and would love to be included in a DIY lock in.
 

Interesting happenings in Daglan.
This was a first for me, I have never seen anyone power washing a roof
before, but what a good idea to clean away the build-up of moss.
 

Events :