When visiting Provence in France, there are three things you must do:
Go to the Brocante (antique market),
Swim in the Mediterranean,
and visit a typical little village around 11:45 in the morning.
Take a walk down the narrow streets, and you will smell the aroma of home cooking, of lunch being prepared.
Sautéed onions, herbs gathered and crushed, simmering in white wine, garlic dancing in olive oil to a sizzling tune! Your mouth will water, mine certainly does. The aroma of home cooking is thick enough to cut, rich enough to betraying your taste buds into thinking that there is actual food in your mouth.
In French villages the houses are hundreds of years old, down the narrow streets you will see them lined-up side by side, snug and three stories high. They are called: "Maisons du Village," (houses of the village), standing sturdy and proud, bearing up wall-to-wall, like a spice rack showing off different herbs, letting out only a wisp of perfumed air, just enough to tempt one to open the lid and pinch some. Or run, grab a baguette and take a chair at their table.
Do these people ever just eat an apple?
How to make a spruced up spice rack:
Buy spice jars, take off the labels, and the lids. I collected antique liquor decanter tops. (Luckily, tops, with out the decanter are usually disregarded as pretty, but worthless at that brocante.)
Small apothecary jars, or spice containers, with bling bling lids. Easy to make, and a spicy conversational piece.
Curry, lavender, cloves, herbs de Provence, black pepper...
and seashells and wine corks fill the spice jars.
I must admit one of the spice jars holds rubber bands, wire twistys, and feves that are used for baking in the Gateaux des Rois.
Have you had lavender salt? It is wonderful on salad.
Take lavender and equal amounts of rock salt. Put it into a container, shake it until well mixed, then set it aside for a month.
After-wards add some to a salt grinder. I tell you it is a delicious, surprising taste.