Hike to Mouton d'Anou from Le Broc

Le Broc Village

In spite of its modest elevation, Mouton d’Anou (1079 m), is a dominating summit on a large plain behind the Baous of St-Jeannet and La Gaude.

We have previously tried to hike to Mouton d’Anou from Saint-Jeannet some years ago, but had to turn around at Jas Jausserand because a sheep flock guarded by several large dogs was staying in the middle of the trail, and making a detour was not possible.

Start of trail from Le Broc to Mouton d'Anou
Trail above Le Broc
Trail to Mouton d'Anou from Le Broc
Hiking between Le Broc and Mouton d'Anou
Wintry hike to Mouton d'Anou
Summit of Mouton d'Anou 1079m
Signposts on trail to Mouton d'Anou

This time we decided to start our ascent from the perched village of Le Broc (450 m) along a straight-forward trail. As the hunting season was still in full swing, we chose a non-hunting day.

From Le Broc Village, we started from signpost #1 (37 in old maps!) along a steep narrow street. In fact, this and the next signpost (#3) did not have our summit written, only Bouyon, Bézaudun and others. The trail proper soon forked right from the paved alley. The first part was a steep path, but it levelled off soon. We came to a piste, forest road, walked along it a bit till signpost #5 where our trail forked left with Mouton d’Anou clearly shown.

We continued along the trail that climbed gently in a sparse oak forest. We came to another dirt track and signposts #137 and 138. Our mountain was visible. From #138 we took the first apparent trail to the mountain top. The summit was marked with a cross. The view was superb, 360°, from the snow-capped southern Alps to the Mediterranean Sea. We took a parallel path back to the dirt track below the mountain, this trail was less rocky.

We then descended along the same trail back to Le Broc.

Elevation gain : 637 m

Duration : 4 h

Distance : 12,2 km

Map: 3642 ET Vallée de l’Esteron Vallée du Loup


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Chicken thighs in tomato sauce

In this recipe, chicken thighs are slowly cooked in tomato sauce with bell peppers. A heavy casserole, cocotte, is perfect for making this carefree but tasty dish.

2 servings

4 free-range chicken thighs with skin
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 shallot
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp. olive oil
75 ml white wine
75 ml chicken stock
3 tbsp. tomato purée
½ tsp. Piment d’Espelette or other mild chilli powder
2 tbsp. black olives
Fresh basil to decorate

Warm the olive oil over medium heat in a heavy casserole such as Le Creuset. Fry the chicken thighs on both sides until golden.

Wash the bell peppers and cut into strips discarding the seeds. Add to the casserole. Peel the shallot, chop and add to the casserole. Peel and mince the garlic clove and add to the casserole.

Add the white wine, tomato purée, chicken stock, and Piment d’Espelette. Reduce the heat to simmering, partly cover the casserole and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the black olives and continue simmering without cover for 10 minutes. Meanwhile microwave some new potatoes. Divide the potatoes and stew on the plates and decorate with basil.


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Loop trail around Mont Razet

Mont Razet seen from Baisse de Scuvion

We have previously hiked  up to Mont Razet (1285 m) from Col de Castillon (730 m) between Menton and Sospel. This time we decided to explore the trail that circles Mont Razet. The GPS track shows the itinerary. Our planned turning point was the picturesque Col du Razet (1032 m) with views down to Menton and the coast.

Many of the coastal mountains in this region close to the Italian border reach well over 1000 m, notably Grammondo (1379 m). During the hunting season no hunting days, Tuesday or Friday, should be preferred.

 We noted that many of the signposts had been renewed. Most of the trail was easy with some short steep and rocky parts. A well-known hiking area for locals, it remains a bit off the beaten track for visitors.

From Col de Castillon we started ascending straight north towards Baisse de Scuvion (1168 m), first passing a crossroads at signpost #137. At Baisse de Scuvion, we were just under Mont Razet. We continued, now descending a bit, heading east to Col de Roulabre (1094 m; signpost #91) then to Col du Razet (signpost #17), where we turned back, followed the same trail to Col de Roulabre (15 min), then further to Pierre Pointue (1176 m; signpost #93 and the crossroads to Mont Razet summit), with remnants of military bunkers by the trail.

After Pierre Pointue the trail descended sharply. Some parts of the trail ran in the forest, some in a rocky incline. Eventually we reached signpost #137 again, and walked back to our starting point.

All in all, it was a great variant of our previous hike where we followed the local randoxygène guide “Circuit du Razet”. In fact, this time we really circled the mountain!

Distance: 9,6 km

Duration: 3h 40

Elevation gain: 616 m

Map: IGN Nice-Menton Côte d’Azur 3742 OT


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French-style peas

This vegetable recipe is again loosely based on the French morning TV show Télématin. The presenter first told that the Sun King Louis XIV loved peas so much that he used to eat them as a snack like some other people eat chocolate.

She then presented the following simple but tasty recipe in which peas are cooked together with spring onions, olive oil, and salad leaves. She called this the French way of preparing peas. This green side goes well with simple chicken breast, turkey escalope or, as in our dish, rôti de veau, roasted veal.

2 servings

100 ml frozen peas
2 spring onions, white parts only
2 tbsp. olive oil
A small head of salad leaves, such as a head of little gem

Wash and slice the white parts of the spring onions. In a casserole, sauté the spring onions and peas in olive oil. Wash the salad, chop it and add to the casserole. Cover and let cook for a few minutes.

Stir the vegetables and lift on the plates.


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