Beaches protected by a coral reef, peaks, cirques and ramparts Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, diving spots and breathtaking excursions, Reunion Island no longer has to prove its richness or diversity. But, from sugar cane to chocolate, through to red palm kernels and vanilla, the island is also a huge pantry of fruit, spices and flavors. This Rural Reunion is increasingly open to travelers who want to spice up their discovery of the island. Between a climb to Piton des Neiges and a swim in the Trou d’Eau lagoon, meeting with three farmers from Reunion, creators of exceptional flavors.
In Sainte-Anne, before climbing up to Philippe Morel’s property, the church is so spectacular that it has to stop. It dates back to the mid-nineteenth centuryAnd century, but it is the decorations of Gaudì – slender and very richly sculpted, the facade is reminiscent of the Sagrada Familia – of the 1920s that make it so fascinating.
On the left side, all in stucco in pastel colors, the pretty chapel of Sainte-Thérèse was the setting for the wedding scene of Jean-Paul Belmondo and Catherine Deneuve in The Mississippi Siren by François Truffaut, shot on the island at the end of 1968. After the village, the road is initially walled with sugar cane, the fields of which stretch as far as the eye can see. Sometimes the barrel gives way to lower patches, covered with serrated and serrated leaves that hide ripening pineapples. The stage is ready.
“I am a Yab chouchou, from Salazie, where they grow chouchou, this meaty vegetable typical of Reunion” – Philippe Morel, farmer from Saint-Anne
Small straw fascinator e chef’s apron embroidered with the slogan “The persistent taste at M. Morel”, Philippe Morel is what we call character. The farmer welcomes us for a lunch from the field to the plate in his racket, a den of concrete blocks and sheet metal, blackened by the fire that burns constantly in the hearth. Smoke comes out of an opening that lets the sun in. Sausages are smoked along the way. “I am a Yab, a descendant of the imps of the Hauts – the interior of Réunion, the hills, opposed to the Bas, the coast and its plains – who were so called because they were not baptized and did not go to the Church.”
Throw the black pork sausage curry as he talks: “There are three types of Yab: red, which lives near volcanoes; the yellow legs, which grow turmeric; and finally the Yab chouchou, like me, which comes from Salazie, where the chouchou, this meaty vegetable typical of Réunion, is grown. “ These identities, which retain a certain strength here, say it well: Reunion has a long tradition as a nourishing island.
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