French Market News 12Aug23-Perseid Meteor-Buche de chevre-Artichokes-Fresh Baguettes-French Market recipe 2023 28 Artichauts violets au cidre

Published on: 13 August 2023

Hello French Market friends,

If you enjoy watching shooting stars (etoiles filantes), then you need to be in the darkest places in France tomorrow night 13th August. For example in Machat, my tiny hamlet in the Charentes, where we do not have any streetlights, between midnight and 4am you can get an excellent view of the Perseid meteor shower. These small particles of the Swift-Tuttle comet collide with Earth’s atmosphere and spark into bright lights that appear to fall through the sky. The shower arrives each August and this year will be most visible in France tomorrow night. Unfortunately, it is not visible in Cape Town but may be visible on the High Veld.  

This week we started to bring in sourdough baguettes, freshly baked in a wood fired oven from Woodstock bakery. These are the best ones that I can find in Cape Town. We are stocking them every morning. If you would like to be sure of getting one, then please let me know and I will reserve for you, as we are selling out quite quickly. They are a great complement to our French cheese.

In our cheese range this week we have a good stock of the buche de chevre. This is a log shaped goat’s cheese which is very popular in France. The crust is white and the centre has a chalky texture, the flavour is not too strong, You can serve the buche naturally with fresh bread, or you can toast it lightly on a slice of bread then drizzle with a little honey and crunchy toasted walnuts.

With the weather starting to warm up at last, we received the first of the season’s violet artichokes from Slent farm on the lower slopes of the Perdeberg mountain. This farm was given its name of Slent, in 1685, by a French Huguenot, Martin Pouisson who was fleeing from persecution in Europe. The farm changed hands over the centuries and more recently Michaela and Attilio from Italy, started growing artichokes and planting vines. Their first wine was produced in 2005 under the Ayama lable.

These violet artichokes are very tender compared to the globe artichokes which are more commonly found here. Most of the violet artichoke is edible however care needs to be taken to remove the “choke” which is the thistle like substance inside the artichoke, at the base of the heart. I have an unusual French recipe for these artichokes braised in cider. This dish can be served as a starter or as a side vegetable dish to a roast meat. I suggest pairing the artichokes with a brut cider. See recipe below.

Hope you have a great weekend.

Suzanne and The French Market Team

Shopping cart0
There are no products in the cart!
Continue shopping