I have, at last, solved the age old question.
What comes first, the chicken or the egg?
Here at Camont, where once all sorts of farm animals roamed at large alongside the canal, there is no doubt. It's the chicken.
Well, actually it not THE chicken, it's SEVEN chickens. So first we got some chickens and THEN we got some eggs. It's that simple. First chickens and THEN eggs.
New to Camont, a simple movable chicken coop placed in one of the garden squares in the potager. Painted woad blue with natural pigment from my friends at Bleu de Lectoure, who also graciously offered the French Kitchen a beautiful pair of black Gascon chooks. They joined a Chilean couple of Araucanas, single White Sussex and two work horse Cou Nu (Naked Necks) laying hens who are doing all the work at present.
It is absoulutely silly how long one can stand and watch the friendly flock scratch and peck. When I can't stand at the stove any longer, just wheel me out to the garden and let me be a chicken voyeur!
So after pulling myself away from the new kids on the farm, I take a stroll around the lower French forty, just to see the changes happening as October takes control.
- The canal side trees reflect a varied palette in the still water.
- The mother fig tree is still bent over with hundreds of small but sweet fall fruit.
- Poplar leaves are beginning to breakdown into compost next to the orchard bridge.
- Wild watercress is beginning to dominate in the spring run off and promises winter greens.
- A dozen new raspberry plants have taken hold and offer the promise of jars of next summer confiture.
- and the beans... the Tarbais beans are heavy with pods drying in this warm fall and have produced just enough beans for this month's Camp Cassoulet cooking classes.
Now, what does one do with two beautifully fresh eggs? Just ask my good friend Robert Reynolds at the Chef's Studio in Portland Oregon. mmm...oeufs en meurette.