France

2:03pm

Fri April 18, 2014
The Salt

Like Ham? There's A Festival For That In French Basque Country

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 3:52 pm

Visitors look at Bayonne hams displayed on the first day of the yearly ham fair.
Gaizka Iroz AFP/Getty Images

In Bayonne, they take their ham very, very seriously.

This medieval fortress of a town is minutes from the French seaside ports of Barritz and St. Jean de Luz, and not far from Spain's St. Sebastian. It has reigned as a cultural and commercial center for a millennium, according to historian Mark Kurlansky in The Basque History of the World.

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4:29pm

Sun April 6, 2014
World

Fighting For Rwanda's Justice In France

Originally published on Sun April 6, 2014 6:00 pm

Rwandan genocide-hunter Dafroza Gauthier on February 4, 2014 at the opening of the trial of Pascal Simbikangwa, Rwanda's former intelligence chief, charged with complicity in the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
MARTIN BUREAU AFP/Getty Images

For more than a decade, Dafroza Gauthier and her husband, Alain, have hunted perpetrators of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. More than 800,000 people were killed in the genocide, most of them members of the Tutsi ethnic group.

Earlier this month, the couple gave testimony against former Rwandan intelligence chief Pascal Simbikangwa in Paris. On March 14, Simbikangwa was sentenced to 25 years in prison for complicity in genocide and crimes against humanity. His was the first Rwandan genocide trial to take place in France.

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2:21pm

Tue March 11, 2014
The Salt

Save The Escargot! Snail-Devouring Predator Rears Its Head In France

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:06 pm

A specimen of Platydemus manokwari collected in a greenhouse at Caen in Normandy. You can see its white pharynx protruding from the underside, ingesting soft tissues of a specimen of the Mediterranean snail.
Pierre Gros/PeerJ

Oh, no, not the escargot!

A vicious little worm with an appetite for snails has made its European debut. And that has some scientists worried about the future of France's famed mollusk appetizer.

The New Guinea flatworm (Platydemus manokwari) is the lone worm on the Global Invasive Species Database's list of 100 of the world's most dangerous invaders. And last November, it was discovered in a greenhouse in Caen, Normandy.

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5:58pm

Thu February 13, 2014
Found Recipes

Paris Confidential: The Mystery Mousse Behind The Chocolate Bar

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 10:17 am

One of the lovely things about the mousse, according to Dorie Greenspan, is its versatility: It goes as well with maple syrup as with peanut brittle — or nothing at all.
Mary Dodd Courtesy of Dorie Greenspan

Gather round, everyone: Dorie Greenspan has quite a story to tell. It's a tale of intrigue, sweets and — just in time for Valentine's Day — the city of love.

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5:32am

Thu January 9, 2014
Europe

No Rain On His Parade: Parisian Preserves Art Of Umbrella Repair

Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 8:21 am

An estimated 15 million umbrellas are thrown away in France each year. Thierry Millet is trying to change that, one umbrella repair at a time.
Lejeune Maxppp /Landov

When an umbrella breaks, most people just throw it away — and pick up another one, from a street vendor or maybe a drugstore.

But what if you got it repaired instead? Would you even be able to find someone who could do the work?

In Paris, it's still possible, but just barely. What was once a thriving profession has dwindled dramatically. These days, Thierry Millet, 58, says he is the city's last umbrella repairman.

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