" The old moon cradled in the arms of the new..." a friend's mum used to say.
When the littlest crescent moon is born, you can still see the echo of the full moon behind it. So what happens when you take a girl out of the country -Old France- and put her on the new moon side of the world -New Zealand-? You will still see the echo of Gascony in the food I will be teaching on a month long jaunt across the north and south islands.
My life on the Gascon Ranch is full of the comings and goings of wonderful guests, friends and clients... sometimes all rolled into one. Last year Ian, Alison and Anthony Metcalfe spent the jaunty month of June at Camont and fell in love with the food, the land and the people of my corner of Gascony. It was no surprise to me that after returning to New Zealand from their 'gap year' in Europe, that they found an excellent way to extend their souvenirs of France, Spain and Italy. They have taken the helm of Great Village Holidays into their capable hands.
Ian skyped me one day last winter and asked if I would be interested in traveling to NZ to teach some cooking classes, host some dinners and sign a few copies of my long running, evergreen cookbook. How long did it take to say "yes"?
So after a winter, spring and summer of dipping down into Spain to sample the wares for a Stylish Spanish book, I am heading for that long white cloud of a country to share my love of Southwest France with hungry folk in Christchurch, Hamilton, Wellington, Tasman and Auckland (not necessarily in that order!).
I am looking forward to meeting fellow bloggers, food lovers, cooks and writers, and especially artisan food producers who will help me make Good Gascon food with Great New Zealand products!
I fly out from Paris on Tuesday... next stop Dubai! Oh, Who's minding the Bacon at home? Why Monday Matt, of course, who promises a potager inventory for his next post... tonight's supper courtesy of his home grown CSA box of coeur de boeuf tomatoes, piments, courgettes, eggplants and well, more peppers, of course!