Wednesday, 15 April 2009

The kitchen garden

As a non-gardener (you can't imagine the shame I feel in writing those words - I'm an embarrassment to myself, not to mention my green-fingered family), I am lost in the midst of a horticultural conversation.  As my mother will tell anyone, a frequently uttered comment as a teenager was "bloody clematis" (or something along those lines) when she and my aunt were in raptures about the latest cutting or new discovery.  However, I must be growing up...  Although I wouldn't be much use to any gardener yet, I am getting interested.  What does this have to do with me being the chef here at Le Manoir de Raynaudes?  Well, the hotel has an idyllic garden, not to mention the swimming pool - and, of particular interest to me, we use many of the garden's herbs, vegetables and plants in our food, including 16 varieties of tomato, row upon row of salad leaves, lemons, beetroot, berries - as well as all the herbs you could wish for.  None of that supermarket, packeted rubbish here.  This is the mother ship of living larders.  Of course, to be a true local, I'm going to have to get my hands bloodied sooner or later - the birds and animals are starting to look at me suspiciously - they must know that I'm already wondering what herbs they'll taste best with...

1 comment:

  1. For your information the clematis armandii appleblossom is in full bloom and the scent is wonderful, the clematis montana is in bud and should bloom next week, sun permitting, and a few early summer varieties of clematis are already in bud. I however have just had to buy coriander and basil in pots from Sainsbuggers as we mere mortals, who do not have a kitchen garden in the south of France, have to do!

    Love you lots Mummy x