Judgement of Pétassou 2019.

Bathed in spring sunshine the Judgement of Pétassou was performed by the children of three local Primary Schools. In true Carnival spirit the beating of a drum is heard in the distance as the Carnival begins to meander its way through the streets of Daglan.

Pétassou is placed onto the trailer towed behind the decorated tractor which leads the procession.
 

Children follow the tractor in their amazing costumes which show the various cultures of the world.
So cute and gorgeous.
 

Helped along by the teachers and parents.
 
Cowboys, Native Americans, Spanish etc.
 

Time to sing and dance and ward off evil spirits for another year.
 

Pétassou is then placed onto the bonfire for his sins. Winter is gone, Spring is here and good times are ahead.
 
 

Events at Castlenaud-6th April to the 5th May. Guided tour and firing of the trebuchet and new this year, the shooting of the cross bow. Plus, face to face with an arquebusier of the Religious War. Both offensive and defensive equipment of an arquebusier.
Le château de Castelnaud

So forget Brexit and come and have fun and enjoyment in the Perigord.
 
 

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Laissez vous Tenter.

Sarlat Truffle Festival 2019

They say the woods around Daglan
grow secrets in the ground,
and the Perigord Noir hide the rarest
of truffles to be found.

The truffle may be ugly,
found by pig or dog,
but everyone agrees
its flavour is to savor.

Hundreds of people were tightly packed around a marquee full of truffles in the Medieval Quarter of Sarlat last Saturday morning. After waiting a few minutes a loud sigh was heard from the gathered crowed as the side panels were removed from the marquee and each person breathed the amazing truffle aroma emanating from within.

And this is what it was for, Perigord Black Gold of every size and every price.
 

A close up. The truffles in the basket on the left were grade 1 priced at €900 per kilo.
 

There were also stalls selling delicious Street Food and with demonstrations of truffle based cuisine from Master Chefs.
 

We are very predictable, we looked for the truffle macaroons. Which are delicious. Just had to buy four, for testing purposes of course.
 

A first for us, truffle cheese. Which is rich and creamy with the distinctive flavour of truffle, I can highly recommend it.
 
 

Don’t miss Daglan’s Truffle Market which is open until February.
 
 

Why the Perigord Noir?

This question has been asked by friends, family, tourists and house hunters. The appeal to us, is that this part of the Perigord offers the most stunning landscapes as the Dordogne River cuts through the unspoiled countryside. The landscape changes at every bend in the road and there are amazing sights as you drive past the villages clinging to the rock face.

La Roque-Gageac.
 

There are four distinctive seasons from short Winters where temperatures can reach below freezing (-7 this morning) to blooming Spring and gorgeous hot Summers. Which are reflected in the seasonal produce sold in the many markets of the area.

The cuisine is rich in its diversity from duck, mushrooms, truffles, cheeses, wine, fruit and vegetables. To match this there are the amazing food festivals. this month we see the truffle market in Daglan and the Truffle Festival in Sarlat. Summertime brings the night markets where you can enjoy fresh cooked local food in pleasant surroundings.

Historical features include the many Château’s featuring pigeonniers and of course the many wonderful Beaux villages of the area.

A taster for the first time visitor to this area are Milandes, Castlenaud, Beynac, La Roque-Gageac, Domme, Daglan and Sarlat.

Medieval weekend last Summer held at Château de Castelnaud.
 

Included sword fighting demonstrations.
 

La Mairie de Daglan, Such a beautiful building.
 

Le Tour de Daglan takes a short rest in the village square.
 

Most of all it is always the people that make a place worth visiting time and again, and Daglan is no exception to this rule. You will never meet more friendly and welcoming people who are always willing to help and to make your life here a little bit better by their presence.

The weekly Craft Session.
 
 

‘Tis the Season to be Jolly

Over recent weeks Sarlat has been transformed from a beautiful medieval town to a wonderful Christmas village. The highlight being Sarlat Christmas Market (this year with a Spanish theme) and outdoor skating rink. Open until the end of December, with up to forty wooden chalets selling traditional arts and crafts, mulled wine, cakes, hot roasted chestnuts and caviar! But I saw no tapas on our morning visit!

Snow flakes flutter down in this tableau scene at the entrance to the Christmas Market.
 

I particular like the traditional Christmas tree ornaments for sale in quite a few of the chalets. Glass baubles, wooden hearts, and lots of red bows that are very popular in this area of France.

Incidentally, many French Christmas traditions originate from Alsace and it was in the town of Selestat that Christmas trees first appeared in the 11th Century. People used to decorate their trees with real fruit but one year the harvest was poor and a local glass blower from Goetzenbruck in Moselle tried to replicate the fruit by creating glass balls to hang on the branches. However, I have heard of a few more places that have been named for the origination of glass ornaments! Wherever they came from, they are gorgeous.

Facade of a Spanish Finca welcomes visitors to the market.
 

I do love this little donkey standing outside the chalet of the Donkey Sanctuary where you can buy gorgeous soap, aprons, tea towels etc. The profit goes to the upkeep of the Sanctuary.
 

New to the Christmas Market is a chalet selling Neuvic Caviar.
 

Spanish Flamenco dancers or matadors decorate many of the chalets.
 

Prints of Salvador Dali paintings hang from the trees. This painting is a particular favourite of mine.
 

Paul admiring the traditional wooden Christmas tree decorations in this chalet.
 
 

Event:-Daglan Truffle Market every Sunday from 11am until February.

26th to 30th December Merlin at Château de Castelnaud-la-Chapelle. This is a narrative show for young children in sound, shadows and light. Shows are at 11 o’clock, 2.30 and 3.30.

Sarlat Truffle Festival 19th and 20th January.
 
 

Good News, we can still buy French bread!

There is no milk in our supermarket in Daglan. In-fact no milk and no deliveries of most things will be arriving in any Supermarket for at least another week but local bread is still being delivered.

France’s major strike by the Gilets Jaunes (yellow vests) is having an effect on the Perigord area in which we live. The Gilets Jaunes are protesting against sharp increases in diesel and petrol prices which could come into force in January. This impacts on the overall rising costs of food etc. and therefore the fall in living standards for a lot of people.

We experienced the strike first hand this morning has we drove to Sarlat market. The roundabouts at two major junctions were very active with people wearing yellow vests, but traffic was flowing. On the way back from Sarlat we observed protesters who were stopping traffic going into Sarlat. Unsure for how long the delay was but expect some delays over the next few days.

More news, you can still buy local fresh vegetables and fruit at the markets… That is if you can get to them.
 

Excellent News for me this week. I have had my first Commission for my artisan embroidery work.

Truffles and truffle oil.
 

Walnuts in a wicker basket.
 

I am so trilled, excited and so very pleased that the person who commissioned me loves the embroidery pictures which will go into her two gites named “Walnut” and “Truffle”.

I am working towards an exhibition in Daglan next July and August. Which will cover a variety of themes and local interest, plus embroidered bags, cushions, pillow cases, lavender hearts etc.
 
 

Event:-Sarlat Marché de Noël, 5th to the 31st December. This years theme is Spain, I can not wait.