A foodie family's diary of travel, food, and photos

Summer in Auvergne – Le Rouget and St Clement

September 2nd, 2012 | Posted by Ruby in Favourite Places | Holidays - (Comments Off on Summer in Auvergne – Le Rouget and St Clement)

My favourite time of the year is summer.  I love the sun, the heat and the long summer days.  And having had so little summer in London this year I was feeling particularly cheated.  We had already decided that we would spend this summer holiday in Auvergne  at the cottage on Jacques family property in Le Papux.

Le Papux is where Jacques spent his first 7 years on and is strongly bond with – not least because his grandparents lived here and this is where he returned for holidays from Paris until his late teens.  More about Le Papux in the next post.

Our holiday started early on Saturday travelling down from Paris, stopping to buy some supplies and arriving late in the afternoon.  Up early on Sunday we were off to the local market at Le Rouget.

We were then off to St Clement for their annual Cockerel Feast with friends and family.  Starting with a Sunday Mass.

And what a feast it was.   A 4 course Sunday lunch in honour of the mighty cockerel, Coq au Vin served with a local speciality Truffade made with potatoes and fresh Tomme de Cantal(a local cheese).

This was followed by an afternoon of entertainment and dancing.

Then dinner was served – another 4 course meal!

The roast pig served with another local speciality Aligot – also made with potatoes and  the very same fresh Tomme de Cantal.

And more dancing.

A great day for young and old alike.

Rover Park and Caramel Popcorn

July 15th, 2012 | Posted by Ruby in Favourite Places | Holidays | Snacks - (Comments Off on Rover Park and Caramel Popcorn)

This is the 2nd year that Cheri and family along with some friends spend a long weekend at Rover park.  Camping in the middle of winter. The reason – Monster Trucks…. it’s a boy thing. But for the children it was a great holiday in the country.  Sadly Rover Park has now closed.




And lots of fun around the fire at night.

Well needless to say, Cheri and Beth were planning menus months in advance, including a Ragu Napolitano that is always a huge success – from a recipe given to me by an old Italian friend.  I’ll post this recipe sometime soon.

The star of the show was definitely the Diddle Daddles (aka caramel popcorn), however these apparently didn’t last much beyond the drive up to Rover park.

Recipe for Diddle Daddles

1 1/2 litre jug filled with popped popcorn (starting with about 150 grams un-popped corn)180 grams butter
1 cup soft brown sugar
1 cup caster sugar
100 grams liquid glucose or corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Bicarb
1 Tablespoon cream
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  1. Set oven to 120 C
  2. Line 2 baking trays with wax paper
  3. Place ready prepared popcorn in a large heatproof bowl
  4. In a deep saucepan melt butter and then stir in sugar, glucose and salt 
  5. Bring to boil stirring frequently, once boiling stop stirring and let boil for about 5 minutes, remove from heat
  6. Add Bicarb and stir (be aware that the Bicarb will cause the mixture to bubble up rising vigorously)
  7. Stir in cream and vanilla
  8. Pour caramel over the popcorn and stir briskly – a bit of a challenge as it becomes very sticky
  9. Spread popcorn onto the trays to achieve a single layer of popcorn as best you can
  10. Place trays in oven for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes
  11. Remove trays from oven and allow to cool
  12. When popcorn is cool break into pieces 
  13. Store in a ziploc bag
  14. It lasts as long as you can keep away from it