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Viola odorata, Nied, Frankfurt/Main on pear, Germany

Toulouse is la Ville Rose for the colour of its bricks, but it’s also ‘Violet city’, having cultivated violets ever since the reign of Napoleon III, when one of his officers broughtviolets back from Parma for his sweetheart.

Treats called “Violettes de Toulouse”, made from violet flowers crystallized in sugar.

Now cultivated in market gardens in the outskirts of the ever growing city, the violets are made into cosmetics and little treats—crystallized violet petals and confits (said to be good with foie gras) and other candies, lollypops, violet dark chocolate, nougats and pralines and more, all available on a barge in the Canal du Midi called La Maison de Violette.

Herbs and spices

Text © Dana Facaros

Images by Fritz Geller-Grimm, Yummyk