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simple local vegetables

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Tuesday, 18 March 2014

small and strong........start and end!
It is not my intention to turn your head to things alcoholical, but.....starting a meal without an aperitif is, for me, not nice!
I'm not talking about the things many people like, 'French' or Greek or Italian, made mainly from anis (which I hate) and tasting horrible, but rather of those special, subtle concoctions made basically from wine and herbs. From this .........(with Crème de Cassis called 'A Kir'.....  to these...   generally classed as 'vermouths' Personally, I find the 'vermouths natural' to be the best, although the famous 'Gin and Tonic' is nice too.
The French have a bad habit of taking not one 'apero' but up to 5 or 6, and Pastis kills the taste buds. Strange - they prepare and offer wonderful food you can't taste because your mouth is frozen or numbed from the pastis!
Bottle of pastis with two filled glasses.Bottle of pastis with two filled glasses. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Wikipaedia tells us..... 'An apéritif is an alcoholic beverage usually served before a meal to stimulate the appetite, and is therefore usually dry rather than sweet. Common choices for an apéritif are vermouthchampagnepastisginrakı;finoamontillado or other styles of dry sherry (but not usually cream sherry, which is very sweet and rich); and any still, dry, light white wine.'
Never mind, the French often think otherwise!

That was the start, now we come to the end....! 

Many centuries ago, when coolers were not available, our ancestors were not dumb! 
They realised that strong alcohol (and vinegar as well as smoking etc) could arrange most 'digestive' problems, either by putting it in with the product or simply drinking it AFTER eating the product! 
I personally have been forced to stop taking these delicious things, except if and when I feel a slight 'queasiness' after eating something, normally if I've been out somewhere! 
A simple 'slug/shot' direct from the bottle does the job. 
An hour or so later - all is 'paletti'....!
I learnt, in Germany, so many stories of little old ladies who drank, every evening, before going to bed, their 'keep me safe tonight' stuff....... 
I detested them, they belong to the 'bitters' group, are very strong in alcohol, which explained why the old ladies slept so well!
Again - you still have your wine to choose for the meal, and all that can make a lot of alcohol, so watch out!
And....again, Wikipaedia tells us.....


A digestif is an alcoholic beverage served after a meal, in theory to aid digestion. When served after a coffee course, it may be called pousse-café. Digestifs are usually taken straight. Common kinds of digestif include:
In certain areas it is not uncommon for a digestif to be taken before a main course. One example is thetrou normand, a glass of Calvados taken before the main course of a meal.
Bitter digestifs typically contain carminative herbs, which are thought to aid digestion.[3]
In many countries, people drink alcoholic beverages at lunch and dinner. Studies have found that when food is eaten before drinking alcohol, alcohol absorption is reduced[4] and the rate at which alcohol is eliminated from the blood is increased. The mechanism for the faster alcohol elimination appears to be unrelated to the type of food. The likely mechanism is food-induced increases in alcohol-metabolizing enzymes and liver blood flow.[4]
Choose your menus and your drinks and the guests will definately come back......!
Bonne Appétit   

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