Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Mûres, Part 2

Last night's impromptu dinner chez les voisins was very nice. We started out with some apéros of which there was a choice of whiskey, bubbly rosé, and kir. I had the bubbly, which was served with three kinds of sliced saucisson (sausage).

M had made broiled fish with a light cheese sauce that tasted much better than it sounds. Next up was a platter of buttered green beans and boiled potatoes sprinkled with parsley. Salad and cheese came next, of course, and dessert was a pear tart.

Big, juicy blackberries, grown right across town from us!

We enjoyed all this out on the neighbors' patio. Another friend of ours from across town joined us for dinner. She brought us a bowl of mûres (blackberries) that she grew in her yard. They're incredible! When we mentioned that we didn't know that those grew around here, she looked at us like the foreigners we are and said, but of course they do! I'll bring you a cutting if you want. They don't have thorns and they're easy to grow.

Well, bust my buttons!* The wild ones that grow at woods edge around here are some variety, while the good eatin' berries are another variety. Who knew?

*Turn your sound on, but not too loud if you're at work!


  1. Oh, man, that dinner sounds so lovely. And those berries are hmm hmmm good. My parents had a berry tree in their front yard but finally had to have it cut down-- when the fruit would ripen and start to fall from the tree, it was EVERYWHERE.... and... so were the purble bird "droppings"... EVERYWHERE! :)) We did get one pie out of the berries one year, though.

    Hey, completely off topic: did you know that Kristin Scott Thomas was an au pair in Paris the same year that we were there? Just a fun fact for you! Did you and Ken see "Ne le dis à personne." ? It's been showing around here and we saw it the other day. I LOVED it.


  2. I once asked a Seattle native if they enjoyed using the abundant wild berries that grew all around. No, she said, they're much too seedy. (They seemed fine to me.) Maybe that's the difference in your neighborhood too.

    I just noticed the charge to make my comments "insightful." Oh dear.

  3. I thought all Berry bushes had thorns!! They look super.

  4. Now you can see why I had so much fun picking berries with Papa. I don't remember thorns or I doubt, at 6, I would have been so eager.

    Searching Canadian cyberspace for buttons. Not a one...

  5. Walt - there are lots of cultivars and hybrids of blackberries - all of them better than the wild ones for various reasons imo. Go for Loganberries, Youngberries, Boysenberries or Tayberries. These are hybrids, often blackberry/raspberry crosses, which improves the rather sickly sweet blackberry no end. There will be various cultivars of each of these hybrids too, so some of them are bound to be thornless. (Sadly it might be too hot for Tayberries on the Loire, but they are the very best.)

  6. judy, we haven't seen that movie. I don't think I've even heard of it... I'll have to look it up.

    chris, yes, insightful. :)

    anne, so did I!

    claudia, you only focused on the good parts!

    susan, too hot? On the Loire? Where do these Taybberries grow, on the frozen tundra?

  7. Tayberries were developed in Scotland. My Kent based berry farmer at my London farmers' market brought Tayberries once or twice, but I think they really only thrive in cool climates with long hours of daylight.


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