a country road in Auvergne            
  Bienvenue à Auvergne and Limousin. These two provinces are situated in the center of France. Auvergne’s terrain is marked by rocky and rugged granite and hardened lava, deep river gorges and volcanic peaks.

The region is world-renowned for its cheeses, aged high in the mountains. Cantal is a hard cheese with a very distinctive flavor and can be eaten at three different stages – “jeune” (young), “entre deux” (in between), and “vieux” (old).

Bleu d’Auvergne is a sharp bleu cheese that is recognized as one of France’s most notable cheeses.


truffade, or mashed potatoes with cheese and herbs
  A very popular side dish is the truffade – potatoes mashed and mixed with a local cheese. This goes well with the local lamb and pork that is raised in Auvergne.
Click photo for recipe
    Limousin is the greener and more lush neighbor to Auvergne. The sprawling vegetation is the perfect place to raise the ducks and geese that render the rich and decadent liver paté known as foie gras.

The land is also teeming with chestnut groves, berry patches and truffles. The food here is not necessarily light – thick, creamy soups and buttery main courses dominate the menu.

But it is because of the exquisite nature of the rich foie gras (literally “fat liver”) and the rarity of the truffles that this region is heralded worldwide for its cuisine.
rich, creamy chestnut soup
Thick, creamy soups are a mainstay of the menus in Limousin. A variety of ingredients are used, including locally grown vegetables and herbs, chicken, pork and beef -- even the local specialty, chestnuts.

Click photo for recipe
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