There are still so many mirabelles (cherry plums) for sale on our market. This is not surprising as there are many different varieties which do not ripen at the same time. In my grandmother's orchard in Essay, they were harvested between 14th July and 10th September... about two months. Her secret was easy to guess – she had carefully planted different varieties.
So it's about time I told you about the Mirabelle festival which took place on August 25th. Sorry. It's because I've hardly had a moment to sit down at my PC and publish my photos of the Regional Lorraine Market with all its delicious offerings.
Let me continue by stopping in front of a market stall displaying a tasty looking "graoully" – a sort of brioche or cake with real mirabelles:
As well as home-made meringuettes (our word for "mirabellettes") with their nice strong taste:
Well now you must be getting to know me better. I do tend to go on a bit! It's all about getting to know what's on offer in front of me. So I sample. I analyse the taste, I buy, I share with others, I review my first impressions ... yes I'm dealing with someone who knows those cherry plums which appeal to me! Moreover putting what's on show through a "torture test" was easy to do: so what about this particular home-made tart? 30-chrono for me.
Well now let me take you to an address I'd heard of but never visited: La Chocolaterie du Plateau à Mont Saint Martin close to Longwy, in my part of the world. It gave me the opportunity to pay my respects to a true gentleman, Michel Armand, a pastrycook, master chocolatier and wine buff, who started his business in 1981. The whole team were passionate about what they were doing. They spoke at great length and with justifiable pride about their products.
87 Route de Longwy – 54350 Mont Saint Martin – Tel 03 82 23 39 94 – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shall we carry on a little longer? I next come to a stand called "Meuse &Merveilles" to find a product made by Jérôme Hatoy in Vavincourt, not far from Bar le Duc, which is shown below. Note it down... for Christmas, as well as a foie gras, it will be a winner!!
On display at the back, you'll find another mirabelle product: a "syrup" from a lady called Clotilde, another inhabitant of the Meuse, living in Domrémy la Canne.
Before leaving all this, let's give a wink to a duo (très sympathique) and warmly praise the quality of their product, which even attracts the envy of the people of Montelimar .... rolling of drums ... I mean Mirabelle nougat!
And not any old nougat. Nougat from Lorraine, produced in Nancy (at the Faubourg des 3 Maisons) by Nougaterie Jacasse with lots of honey from the Meuse (it's Jeanne's secret - she does not skimp with the quantity of honey in it, over 23% for this particular version) ... and with an intense and generous natural aroma. In all, a nougat that melts in the mouth and has a true Mirabelle taste.
To those who might say to me that almonds are not particularly associated with the Lorraine area, I'll just say that they were introduced here a good long time ago. And let's not forget either, that the well known Verdun dragées was created in 1220.
If you fancy the tee-shirts sported by the two ladies on duty on that day, you can buy them in my Nancy store via la-melie.com ;-)
and last but not least, the new sodas from les Brasseurs de Lorraine : a cola and a nature "lemonade", sold in my other shop, l'épicerie du goût !