The "remarkable sites of taste" label is a French brand under the aegis of four ministries : culture, tourism, environment and agriculture. In the gastronomy of Livradois-Forez, it is of course the Billom garlic and the Fourme d'Ambert that have stood out. So around billom, your taste buds discover a condiment that has a lot of character. While at Ambert, they savor a blue-veined cheese of great sweetness.
Ail de Billom: free to taste the most sulphurous of condiments
Garlic, this superfood, a health ally of gastronomy since billom.
Here is one that has unfairly bad press! However, this garlic is very elegant, with its spiky hair, her very fine and soft skin, her pink reflections. Heavy in the hand, it swelled with nutrients, vitamins and minerals. At the same time antibacterial, antivirus, antioxidant, it also reduces bad cholesterol. It reduces the risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. It even helps fight cancer. A well-stocked curriculum vitae for this nugget of gastronomy, don't you think?
Garlic, a condiment considered a vegetable around the Mediterranean, has been cultivated since XIVe century in Billom and around. The clay-limestone soils favor its cultivation. In this geographical sector, pink garlic is then noticed. Because its culture is inscribed in intangible cultural heritage of France. Producers cultivate it in the open field and harvest it from July. Then, after a time of drying in the air, in height and sheltered from the sun, the garlic can be sold.
Ail de Billom: an annual production of gastronomy to taste from July
« In July, the first vacationers are seized by the pungent smell of garlic which invades the whole countryside. Indeed, it is the effluvia exhaled by the garlic aligned regularly in the fields and this, over several kilometers up to Clermont-Ferrand. Placed in tight rows, it thus dries in the open air heated by the rays of the sun. The show is unique. » Antoine Thiboumery.
Chefs, like gourmets, appreciate this high end bulb recognized for the delicacy of its taste qualities. The latter have an appointment in August for a large market during which the most beautiful pods are exchanged. And at events organized for Remarkable sites of taste. And no doubt some recipes and specialties passed on through conversation. How to choose the right garlic in Livradois-Forez? Favor the most natural crops possible and without anti-germination treatment which alters the product.
Too petrified at the thought of having bad breath? Then chew parsley, mint or coffee beans. Or keep in mind that all the guests ate the same dish. That your immune defenses are better than the neighbor. Or that you are single anyway.
Fourme AOP d'Ambert, the sweetest blue cheese
You surely know the Fourme d'Ambert in gastronomy, this cylinder with blue cheese? A a must on the cheese board traditional and family: the “fourme”, produced in Livradois-Forez for centuries. Its roots are Gallo-Roman. But it was the women who, going up to the summer pastures with the herds and the children during the summer months, made it from XVIIIe in the middle of the XXe century. It is now mostly made in dairy and recognized as one of the remarkable sites of taste. But we are witnessing the rebirth of farm production which is finding takers on the markets. And what do the connoisseurs argue about.
Gray crust, the cheese is a cylinder of about 2 kg. It is cut in two or four for sale at the producer. And sometimes in slices at the cheese maker to reveal its blue-veined paste. Iconic cheese from Forez Auvergne, the AOP Fourme d'Ambert is produced between 600 and 1600 m altitude in the Puy-de-Dôme, but also on a small piece of the Loire and Cantal. Thus, the grass that the dairy cows exclusively feed on gives the fourme its very special flavors.
Fourme d'Ambert, a gourmet cheese popular in the kitchen
In conclusion, the reputation of this cheese is second to none. Thierry Chelle, Chef Toque d'Auvergne of the restaurant Friends is an enthusiast. 20 years ago, he decided to take the fourme out of the cheese board to bring it to the kitchen. You are free to visit him to see if he wins his bet! Thierry Chelle also shares with you one of his favorite recipes on our blog.
Finally, for those who have never seen an fourme in its natural habitat, let us describe it to you: Cylindrical in shape, the Fourme d'Ambert is 17 to 21 centimeters high and its diameter is between 12,5 and 14 centimeters. The beauty of gastronomy weighs between 2 and 2,5 kilograms (with a minimum of 50% fat). So much for the measurements, so specific to this cheese whose tall silhouette never fails to catch the eye. Its fine, flowery rind takes on a gray shade of blue, while its ivory paste is strewn with blue spots (so-called “veined” paste). These characteristic hollow molds are obtained by the pricking process, which also allows the dough to be aerated and flowered.
We're salivating in advance, aren't we?