Panier of Plenty

Plenty for All

As chestnuts fall, slugs, tiny worms, cows (seen crunching
them whole with the prickly casing), sanglier (wild pigs)
and two legged predators are quick to harvest this delicacy.

Our trees (part of the forest that surrounds the mas) are
visited by a steady stream of locals and holidaymakers –
they are beside the mountain road in one of the most convenient
places to stop. After previous years of getting up early
before the rush, or trying different methods of harvesting
and preserving the marrons in advance, this year the strategy
is simple as I pick up my panier and head to a hidden spot,
well beyond the reaches of any passers-by.

Shrouded by mist as the humid ‘Marin’ covers the Albères,
cow bells tinkle as the giant chestnut trees at higher
altitude drop their ripe fruit at my feet, many already
split open. All that is required is a sidewards foot
movement to realese the fresh chestnuts from their protective
shell and they are ready to be roasted on tonight’s fire…

This entry was published on October 18, 2013 at 10:55 pm. It’s filed under Country Life, Country Living, Cuisine, Environment, Europe, Expat, Food, Forest, France, French Culture, Home, La Vie Quotidienne, Languedoc Roussillon, Leisure, Life, Lifestyle, Mediterranean, Nature, Pyrénées, Rural Life, Seasons, South of France, Thoughts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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