The Lavendar Festival

On Fridays, I puruse the Nimes paper and their calendar of special events and suggested activities for the following week and month. Reading an article titled, "Une premiere journee dediee a la lavande." I knew I had to go. A day of Lavendar what a wonderful idea. Jean taking a break from his studies joined Zoe, I and Pantoufle for the drive to the vilaage of Vezenobres (about 30 km from Uzes). beautiful hill town that we had never been to before. In the process of being restored with the ancient cobblestone streets, walls, and houses it was magic. july 26-aug 10 2006 summer pictures 038.jpg

Our first stop was a stand with a woman who sold a variety of homemade syrups made from herbs and flowers (mint, lavender, thyme, romarin, etc.) that you mix with water to make a delightful drink. As though Zoe was a wine connoiseur she tasted 4 or 5 drinks and she vacillated between menthe and lavande. Having usually bought the syroup de menthe in the store this was quite different as it was clear versus green and tasted like the pure mint tea from Marocco. The lavande was also quite nice, but we decided we would try making our own and see if we could create the same syrup out of fresh lavender.

With this decision in mind we stopped by the next stall that sold lavender by the bag and told us how to make the special syrup. july 26-aug 10 2006 summer pictures 034.jpg The recipe is also in the recipe section in english. A few days ago, we tried to make it, but I think I overcooked the lavendar as it turned a brown color liquid. Next time I will stick to the 5 minute boiling as the recipe says.

Watching the men make the lavendar oil and lavender water in large vats we decided this could be an easy hobby to do in your own back yard. All you need is the large lavender distillers and lavendar. Voila!

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Suzanne Saxe-Roux