Tuesday, 10 December 2013

L'Oie de Touraine

The Touraine Goose is one of the historic products of this region, like the Géline. In the past it was abundant in the Touraine, grown for its meat and the trade in feathers and down for making mattresses and pillows.

The Touraine Goose has similar origins to the other white geese breeds from central France, but had nearly disappeared in recent times. Thanks to the determination of an enthusiast from the Loches area, it has been rediscovered and relaunched in 1990.

A Touraine gander, waiting for an opportunity to peck his neighbour.
It is associated with a number of traditional feasts:

The Grape Harvest Goose (l'Oie des vendanges) -- thanks to its rapid growth rate and relatively small size the Touraine Goose is ready to be roasted by the end of the grape harvest.

St Michael's Day (l'Oie de la St Michel) to St Martin's Day Goose -- in the medieval calendar geese are generally slaughtered between St Michael's Day (29 September) and St Martin's Day (11 November). From the 16th century, the goose would be prepared à la anglaise (roasted with sage and onion stuffing) on St Michael's Day, to acknowledge the victory of the English over the Spanish Armada.

Alternatively, you could fatten the goose for a bit longer and have it for St Nicolas's Day (6 December,  when gifts were given to children). Nowadays, this tradition has morphed into the Christmas festivities, and the goose has been supplanted by the turkey.
Loire Valley Nature: Photos of a larva have been added to the Crane Fly Tipulidae entry (warning: the gross out factor is fairly high --these are not attractive creatures).
Photos of a Little Egret Egretta garzetta have been added to the Herons and Bitterns Ardeidae page.
A photo has been added to the Marmalade Hover Fly Episyrphus balteatus entry.
Photos have been added to the Meadow Brown butterfly Maniola jurtina entry.
Photos have been added to the Medlar Mespilus germanica entry.
A new entry has been added for Wild Oregano Origanum vulgare.
A la cuisine hier: Cream of Tomato and Celeriac Soup, using tinned tomatoes like this, but less spices, and celeriac and milk instead of carrots and cream.
Update: chm was the winner of yesterday's quiz and the results are added to that post.


Tim said...

I've added a comment on the "Herons and Bitterns Ardeidae" page...
the "jizz" factors to watch out for for the whole trio.

Susan said...

Tim: Thanks, that sort of info is really useful.

Tim said...

As well as the meat and the feathers, there are numerous traditional uses for goose grease, culinary or otherwise. According to the Goosefat Information Service (!), "To remedy ‘colds on the chest’ goose fat was smeared onto brown paper and applied to the chest or back as a poultice." P.

Ron Ron said...

Mew, mew...
And I've just posted about the above tried and tested use of goosefat on "It's a Cat's Life"

the fly in the web said...

Mother, helping out at a post war clinic, saw a child who had been smeared with goose fat and wrapped in brown paper for the winter... and no, I have no idea what the insanitary arrangementes were....

Susan said...

Fly: Wow! Not to mention LOL!

Pearl said...

funny as religion shifts, so does food habit.

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