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bleudauvergne

The Montignac Method

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They didn't have anything not breaded or fried for lunch at the cafeteria today. So I helped myself to a salad and ordered a steak (about 300 grams). At 4PM I had a peach. I drank about 5 glasses of water throughout the afternoon.

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Tonight we had stuffed veggies, mushrooms and the rest of that winter melon.

Hollow out the mushrooms with a melon baller.

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Chop the stems in the moulinex with whatever you've got - I threw in the last of the steamed veggies and peas from the other day.

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I then incorporated the minced chicken breast, the last of the Charolais from the cheese plate, some fresh herbs (chevril and parsley) and two eggs.

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Both the winter melon and the mushrooms were cradled in foil to keep them from losing all their fluid and drying out on the outside while they cooked.

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Once stuffed, they went in the oven at 160c/300f for 1/2 an hour.

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Dinner:

Stuffed mushrooms and melon

Tomato juice.

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Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

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Wow, some really wonderful looking items that you get to eat. Having been following Atkins myself for almost a year a lot of the Montignac rules seem to make basic sense, as it also seems to be a plan based on insulin response and control, it just goes about it in some different ways. Actually aside from the rules about combinations to avoid, the food choices look very similar to the final two stages of the Atkins plan. Anyways, the best of success to you, your photographs are lovely.

Lyons looks like a beautiful city. I remember when I spent a winter in London I would just walk around to look at things, and I have a feeling I would do the same were I living in such a picturesque place as you. Seeing all of the charm and personality that your town seems to be infused with really makes my strip of suburbia all the more depressing.... ;).

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This is perhaps my favourite thread on all of eGullet; and that is saying one helluva lot.

Thank you for this, bleudauvergne. Your photos are absolutely awe-inspiring. I hope you don't mind that I've saved them all.

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Thank you so much for the encouragement, guys. :blush:

My question to you, Nullomondo, is how are you feeling, physically, after a year on Atkins? Do you find yourself full of energy and continuing to eat healthy? What has your adjustment been coming off? Have you found yourself gaining back the weight you lost? Are you making better food choices these days, or do you find yourself fixating on all those things you weren’t allowed to have while on the Atkins plan (bread, pasta, polenta, tamales, risotto, etc.)?

Your thoughts on coming off would be interesting to hear, even though I’ve just started Stage I of Montignac and have a at least a few weeks before I reach Stage II and can make sure I get off on the right track with that. (Montingac has 2 Stages, The first stage concentrates on loss, and Stage II concentrates on establishing good habits for maintenance.)

Thank you Sashimi for your kind words of support. :smile:

I am really just getting started with this, it is my 6th day. And I would like to say that I feel pretty good. I was on the bus last night, reading. And I suddenly realized that under normal circumstances, I’m usually really tired at the end of a work day. But yesterday I was full of energy and rearing to go. So losing the weight is going to be a good thing, but I think breaking the bad habits I was getting into that really were leaving me winded at the end of the day is going to be even better. I am also more able to concentrate on my work this week. I’m not sure why. It could be many factors. But it could also be my body saying – thanks.

On the way home on the bus last night I became slightly concerned about the tete de veau. What am I going to do with the leftovers? I was reading a novel, and came across a passage when a man was described by the woman who loves him as first being struck with his “having in him the penultimate possibilities either for good or for evil, and ready, it seemed, to swing either way” – and it struck a chord and my thoughts went to the tete de veau. I know, I’m always thinking about food. I can’t help it.

I think my initial reaction to the dish was that it was infused with wonderful flavor, and it’s fresh and clean like veal, and the texture is interesting and pleasant, and it feels like it must be good for you going down, not to mention the sauce being just amazing. However, it is the first time I’ve prepared and eaten this dish.

Considering that this is not a personally nostalgic dish for me, I wonder how many times in a row I can serve it before at least one of us tires of it, it has a lot of personality. I was worried about this coming home from work last night, and I was thinking about how I could possibly use the dish or it’s broth within another dish, and in light of other discussions on eGullet, I got to thinking about terrines, and how these are basically the same thing, in solid form, and we eat it and liven up the flavors and textures with pickles and other morsels of antipasto type things on the plate. So when I arrived home, and checked the fridge and saw that it had gelified, I was very happy.

I decided to make use of my new freezer to oven silicone moulds, and do small individual galatines. So I pulsed the dish in the moulinex to get the pieces rather small but still irregular, and then heated it up very briefly to get it rather liquidy, and poured it into my moulds. I think this can easily be frozen and now I have 6 individual servings that will make a nice presentation, and taste good. I added a little bit of salt to the dish because I personally find that cold food tastes better a bit more salty.

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Now I regret not having done something more decorative than place a single herb leaf in the end. But if this comes out nicely I can try other things and other leaves, layers of vegetables and the likes. It’s going to be fun. :biggrin:

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Thank you so much for the encouragement, guys. :blush:

My question to you, Nullomondo, is how are you feeling, physically, after a year on Atkins? Do you find yourself full of energy and continuing to eat healthy? What has your adjustment been coming off? Have you found yourself gaining back the weight you lost? Are you making better food choices these days, or do you find yourself fixating on all those things you weren’t allowed to have while on the Atkins plan (bread, pasta, polenta, tamales, risotto, etc.)?

Your thoughts on coming off would be interesting to hear, even though I’ve just started Stage I of Montignac and have a at least a few weeks before I reach Stage II and can make sure I get off on the right track with that. (Montingac has 2 Stages, The first stage concentrates on loss, and Stage II concentrates on establishing good habits for maintenance.)

Well, first of all, I am still on the plan. Atkins, like Montignac, is a multi-staged endeavor. The first two stages are designed for weight loss, the third to lose the last five or so pounds and prepare you for maintaining your goal weight, and the final for maintaining your goal weight for life. By the fourth stage pretty much all foods (even wheat flours, potatoes, carrots, sugar, etc) are legal, but intake and your bodies reaction to them must be monitored. The last stage is basically just eating very sensibly of healthy fats and proteins, good carbs, and lots of vitamins and minerals in the form of fresh veggies and fruits. I am currently in the second stage, getting near the point where I will jump into the third.

I have personally been feeling great, I have lots more energy, can get by with far less sleep, and am loving the increased balance and grace inherent in having a lighter body. I think that these benefits are pretty much common across the board with diets designed to stabilize blood glucose levels, as from the research I have read, it is the wild swings in blood sugar that really cause havoc in your body. I am definately eating healthier than I ever have simply because I am now actually paying attention to what I eat. These plans which make you monitor the actual type of foods you eat instead of just calories seem to be very good about forcing one to pay attention to what exactly goes into ones mouth, and I see a huge change from what I was eating pre-weightloss days. From time to time I will get a craving for the forbidden foods, but those usually pass. One of the things that I like about the Atkins plan in particular is that since it practically eliminates all sugars (any form, sucrose, fructose, dextrose, honey, whatever) and discourages the use of artificial sweeteners, it really kills any sweet tooth you may have. Of course, I don't live in France, so I have most likely never had wonderful bread, and I have never exposed myself to the wonders of polenta and risotto. I miss tamales sure, but it is possible to do a lot of baking with protein powders and isolates and high fibre grains and seeds (like flax seed, mesquite meal, and oat something or other). For some dishes it forces you to be creative in substitutions, but most things can be made to work out very well. I have also noticed it has really woken up my taste buds, I never realized before how much of what I ate beforehand was just so bland and artificial compared to what I eat now.

Montignac seems to be nice in that it doesn't forbid any huge classes of food, just the combinations of them. I can see how this could be good in that you wouldn't be tempted to binge on donuts as you can still have that wonderful looking bio-bread with your strawberry confit, and who needs sucrose when you can add fructose.

I'd be interested in hearing how this has effected your appetite. Does Montignac encourage you to get your body into a state of ketosis, or is the carb intake (albeit what appears to be wholesome carbs) too high?

If I keep reading this blog for much longer I am going to blow a big chunk of my next paycheck at fromages.com.....

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About Ketosis: I really have no idea about that! Is that what diabetics try to avoid? Please explain. :unsure: I do know that I certainly feel less tired, if that's what you mean.

About hunger:

1) I was not much of a big breakfast eater before this (except weekends), what I'd do would be to get to work and have a few cups of coffee, and only sometimes a venoisserie, like a croissant or a pain au chocolate at the cafe here. So it's been a nice welcome change to start the day with fruit first and then a nice hearty good tasting breakfast. I arrive to work and do not even have the impulse for these kinds of sweets (this morning a platter of them were passed around a meeting and I didn't even want one).

2) I used to not get hungry at all, and then around 2pm I'd feel weak and have to eat. Now I feel a healthy growl in the stomach around lunch time.

3) I have found around 4PM I get the hankering for something, and have a piece of fruit. Otherise it would be something sweet for me.

4) Before starting the plan, I usually would come home pretty tired and hungry. I sometimes would eat a quick snack of something bad for me like cold fatty leftovers, cheese and bread, or something sweet. I also did not put any check on sampling while cooking. Now that I've started with Montignac, I am not starving when I get home, nor am I feeling the fatigue.

So in short, about hunger, although I am possibly actually eating more food (and definitely more fruit) than I was before, I don't feel urgent hunger nor do I feel like I am being deprived. As soon as I feel it come on in the afternoon, I am certainly allowed to go ahead and have a piece of fruit. :smile:

About carrots: Montignac allows raw carrots in stage I.

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Lucy -

Just to indicate how deeply this blog is affecting me: I dreamed about it last night. I dreamed that you were actually somewhere in New Jersey, using photos from a long-ago trip to France to illustrate your blog. Since I am from New Jersey myself, and since I have scads of photos from trips to France past, and since I ache to someday live in France, I believe there is some funny transference going on here. I do not for a moment believe, consciously, that you are anywhere but Lyon. I think I'm just envious down to the core.

I know I've already said so, but your photographs are beautiful. You have a fine sense of composition, one that seems entirely intuitive. I hope that you have aspirations towards becoming a professional food photographer; if you don't, you should.

I'm also envious of your ability to stick to a dietary regime. My aging metabolism is so worn out that diets just don't get me anywhere, at least not with the sort of haste that keeps one making the sorts of sacrifices required. I've decided to try and exercise away my excess size (since exercise is the only thing that has worked at all for me in recent years). I'm doing circuit weight training 3 times a week, in addition to cycling anywhere from 50 - 100 miles weekly and keeping up my already careful(ish) eating habits. My house itself functions as a stair-master :laugh:, with two steep flights between my office and the main floor – I make at least 10 trips up and down daily. I'm to be measured today to gauge my progress after the first month (I'm trying to eschew the bathroom scale). Fingers crossed that I'll show some shrinkage.

Sorry to hijack your thread. Just want you to know that I'm following ever-so-closely.

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I regret not having done something more decorative than place a single herb leaf in the end.

One can always do more and one can always think they should have done more, but I found that photograph with the single leaf at the bottom so evocative of a cuisine of unforced finesse. It also brought to mind the image of the finished product in a way that neither an empty mold or a filled on would have. The leaf in the mold brought a dimension to the photograph.

As usual, your log is working on many levels. One need not be interested in dieting to follow it or crave what you are cooking. Tête de veau is not a dish for which I have any personal nostalgia either. It's one I enjoy on occasion, perhaps precisely because it's not from my childhood or history and it is thus transporting, but it's also not something I'd crave in large portions or night after night. I suppose it would keep for a few days and be reheat-able, but your solution is interesting. Apparently this gels at refrigerator temperature--no surprise--and you are freezing it to keep, but not to serve frozen. Let us know about the texture after it's defrosted. I suspect it will be fine. We've never cooked tête de veau, but some years back Mrs. B made a great pot of tripe and we had some left over. It's even possible we made it for a dinner party and it didn't go over as big as we had hoped it would. :biggrin: What I remember is taking the leftovers out of the refrigerator and noticing that it had set. We unmolded it and had a dome of jellied tripe. We cut a slice and it was so good that we heated the rest and poured it into a rectangular terrine to set and enjoyed it sliced with cornichons. I suspect your tête de veau would have worked as well cut in large chunks. Come to think of it, isn't that what head cheese is? Of course those terrines are going to be great.

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About Ketosis: I really have no idea about that! Is that what diabetics try to avoid? Please explain. :unsure: I do know that I certainly feel less tired, if that's what you mean.

Ketosis is the state into which your body enters when it depletes its stores of glucose (due to vast reduction in simple sugars and carbohydrates) and starts to burn its own fat stores for energy. The benefits of this are that your body starts to burn fat as its primary fuel, and thus your weight-loss is accelerated. A side benefit of this is that it naturally reduces your appetite.

I would assume from seeing what you are eating that Montignac does not induce a ketogenic state in your body, as the carbohydrate intake must be very very low to do this, under 40/50 grams per day (sometimes far under, sometimes some above) depending on your activity level). I would assume that the appetite/hunger pang reductions inherent to Montignac are due to stabilized blood glucose and insulin levels, and therefore your body not signalling for more food to over-correct for sudden sugar crashes. It has also been found that upping water intake, in addition to all of the general health benefits, can help ease hunger pangs, as what many people interpret as hunger is actually thirst and dehydration.

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I would assume that the appetite/hunger pang reductions inherent to Montignac are due to stabilized blood glucose and insulin levels, and therefore your body not signalling for more food to over-correct for sudden sugar crashes.

NulloMondo, I think you're right, I have to say that I have a healthy appetite, under no circumstances would I say that I'm going hungry, I am eating more than I usually do (i.e. fruits during the day, large breakfast). :smile:

I think I eat enough carbs to keep me from going into a state of ketosis, mainly because I have been eating a rather hefty dose of bread in the morning, have vegtables with lunch and dinner and fruit at two other times of the day. Add the strawberry compote, and you're well over the 40-50 grams.

Dr. Montignac does mention that just by eating right and getting the pancreas healthy again, the body will get down to it's ideal weight by force of nature, although it is a gradual process and not speeded up in any way. I guess I should read the principles more closely, I wish I could be more articulate about it. The book's much more articulate than I could be, I think.

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Sorry to hijack your thread. Just want you to know that I'm following ever-so-closely.

You are ever so welcome to join the fun GG! I have been to visit your bio and you take some pretty cool pics yourself. :cool:

IMG_0492.JPGJust for your peace of mind...

My house itself functions as a stair-master

:laugh::laugh::laugh:

Apparently this gels at refrigerator temperature--no surprise--and you are freezing it to keep, but not to serve frozen. Let us know about the texture after it's defrosted. I suspect it will be fine.

I hope so, we'll see this weekend. :rolleyes:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

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Interesting statistics (from Montignac's book) - in a study of the eating habits of obese subjects (Pr. Creff), it was determined that 15% just eat too much, 34% eat amounts that correspond with the norm of the rest of the population, and 51% eat significantly less than the norm. Conclusion: Overweight people aren't eating too much, they aren't eating enough good food! :biggrin:

I went back to the butcher and got a wedge of bacon. Tonight we begin with the famous Dr. Montignac lentils. The recipe is not his, but the idea is. He says that in the year 1920, the French used to eat 8 times more lentils than they do now. The idea was that this was a staple of the French diet and now people never eat these anymore.

Great! I thought. I can look up all kinds of fabulous lentil recipes from my old cookbooks, one from the turn of the 20th century (it's not dated but it is estimated as circa 1900 by the person who sold it to me), the other from 1922.

There is not one recipe for any preparation involving lentils in the 1922 cookbook and a vague and sketchy description of a dish in the older book, which is actually a handbook for scullery maids, and the recipe does not even mention bacon! Dude this is crazy!

Further investigation and I find out that lentils were considered the "meat of the poor" and no one from the class that would buy a cookbook would ever prepare such a dish. France must have had more than 8 times the number of poor people in the 1920s! I love lentils! I'm poor! This works!

IMG_0500.JPGBacon, onion, bouquet garni.

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Brown the bacon, add the onion and slowly sweat until it releases enough liquid to deglaze the pan.

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After picking through and washing the lentils (do that because I found a rock and 2 unknown sticks), add them to the bacon and onion, throw in your bouquet, and a teaspoon of salt.

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IMG_0565a.JPGThis is about as close to Janes Crazy Mixed up Salt as we get over here.

IMG_0552.JPGCold water to cover, bring to a boil, lower heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.

IMG_0588.JPGLentils.

Enjoy with a generous glass of tomato juice.

:biggrin:


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

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Bleu,

I have just discovered this thread and read it from the beginning. Fabulous, as usual.

A word about carbs: not all carbs are equal. Simply there are simple sugars and complex carbohydrates. I certainly do not know the details of the Montignac diet, but it seems that it is associated somehow with the glycemic index, which looks at how quickly calories are absorbed from the GI tract into the bloodstream. Simple sugars such as refined white flour sucrose or fructose (there really is no proven practical difference despite many claims to the contrary) tend to be absorbed most quickly, while complex carbs such as whole grains, certain veggies (unfortunately, tomatoes are full of simple sugars), proteins and fats less so. A meal unbalance with simple sugars is likely to put a greater strain on insulin production and glucose metabolism than is a meal that is more well-balanced. One problem I have had is limiting available snacks laden with simple sugars such as Krispy Kreme donuts. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon to find things like that lying around at work.

I too have given up coffee and tea, both of which I love. They actually weren't as difficult to give up as I thought. Now if I had to give up chocolate....

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A word about carbs: not all carbs are equal. Simply there are simple sugars and complex carbohydrates. I certainly do not know the details of the Montignac diet, but it seems that it is associated somehow with the glycemic index, which looks at how quickly calories are absorbed from the GI tract into the bloodstream. Simple sugars such as refined white flour sucrose or fructose (there really is no proven practical difference despite many claims to the contrary) tend to be absorbed most quickly, while complex carbs such as whole grains, certain veggies (unfortunately, tomatoes are full of simple sugars), proteins and fats less so. A meal unbalance with simple sugars is likely to put a greater strain on insulin production and glucose metabolism than is a meal that is more well-balanced.

Interesting you should post this. This is the thinking behind my diet philosophy. Basically, I try to focus on foods that take a long time for the body to break down, there-by preventing spikes of sugar into the bloodstream.

And here I thought I was being so original. :laugh:

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A word about carbs: not all carbs are equal.

Not only that, docsconz, but there's an interesting chart where they tested the blood glycemia level of someone after eating 50 grams of pure glucose and measured it continuously over a period of 180 minutes. Then they did the same thing with 50g gluscose + 14,5 grams of pectin. Theres a huge spike in the glycemia when the person eats pure glucose, but only a rather wavelike flux of glycemia when the glucose is combined with pectin.

So fiber acts to smooth out the reaction to sugar. Bloviatrix was right!

Now if I had to give up chocolate....

But you don't. Chocolate is definitely allowed (as long as it's 70% cocoa content or higher).


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

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Now if I had to give up chocolate....

But you don't. Chocolate is definitely allowed (as long as it's 70% cocoa content or higher).

Yipee!!! Another excuse to eat the good stuff.

:wub:

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Instead of doing the stairs we hit the market bright and early today. We are planning to go to a party tonight where I have been delegated the job of doing a platter of finger food. The theme of the party is Martini. I still have not decided whether I am going to have one or two or not, since things like gin and vermouth are verboten during Stage I. And after two rather generous martinis, the kind made at parties, I may feel the urge to start breaking rules. So I have to keep a tight chain on my participation during this whole event. It is going to be challenging.

You may be wondering if I plan to do the finger foods Montignac friendly. Some will be, like shrimp, and artichoke hearts, etc. But others will not. I actually have a whole lot of flour in the cupboard, and plan to use as much of it as possible to get it out of here. That way it won't go to waste. :smile:

I'll be documenting the things I'm making and have not decided whether they'll go on this thread or not. I don't want people thinking they can eat profiteroles on the Montingac plan.

There is actually a chapter on how to manage events, cocktail parties, and being a guest. There is nothing more rude to the French as someone sitting there pouting and refusing to take things that are offered to them when they are guests. Dr. Montignac offers several solutions for disposing of drinks. One is to discreetly slip into the wc, and pour it in the toilet. Another is to place your glass strategically within reach of a known heavy drinker and switch glasses with that person when their supply seems to be getting low. :laugh::laugh: Another is to pour it in a plant although I did not find that amusing, I love my plants and hope that no one would ever pour a martini in one of mine!

Anyway, the market was full of scrumptious things to look at. Here's a few of them.

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Our major shopping for this week is done: Lettuce (3 kinds) sage, a chicken, thyme, radishes, butter (most of this will be used in making the party platter for tonight), cherries, pain integrale, cheese (Bleu d'Auvergne, St. Nectaire, St. Marcellin, Comte), celery root, bitter chickory, fish fillets, apples, chives, cherry tomatoes, chevril, basil, more radishes, onions, parsley and red onions.

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Three different kinds of fresh fish: Sole, Merlan, and Lingue, a fish we recently discovered and find is quite good. We are learning a great deal about the qualities of fish and how they each act differently.

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Lunch was a big salad with fresh lettuce, basil, sage, parsley, chevril, chives, cherry tomatoes, lentils, and salad de museau from the butcher.

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Have a great Saturday!


Edited by bleudauvergne (log)

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So fiber acts to smooth out the reaction to sugar.

It does so by slowing down the absorption from the GI tract, presumably by trapping it and delaying contact with the mucosa. Fats and proteins work somewhat the same way to slow down absorption of simple sugars, only they are eventually absorbed as well.

Lucy, once again, the photos are incredible. They complement your writing beautifully.

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What is "cerfeuille"?

cerfeuille is indeed chervil--not so easy to find in north america.

gorgeous blog, bleudauvergne. i too have never been to France and am "epoustouflee" (blown over) by the beauty of your photos. thanks.

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yum yum! WHat's salade de museau?

Salade de Museau is a local specialty that is made from beef. It has pickles and has been marinated in a vinaigrette. :smile:

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