Woman with cabbage and garlic - Femme au chou et a l'ail
The Woman with Cabbage and Garlic – Femme au chou et a l’ail (French) - La Femo eme lou caulet (Provençaux) is considered to be the No. 19 "Essential" Santons for a Provençal creche.
She carries a braid of garlic in one hand while holding a head of cauliflower with the other. Both of these vegetables are important to a Provençal tradition: l'aioli, a garlicky mayonnaise. As explained in Wikipedia: "In Provence, aioli (or more formally, Le Grand Aïoli) is more than simply the garlic mayonnaise, it also designates a complete dish consisting of various boiled vegetables (uniformly carrots, potatoes, and green beans), boiled fish (normally desalted salt cod), and boiled eggs usually served along with snails or mollusks, with the aioli sauce. Other commonly used vegetables are cauliflower, courgettes (zucchini) and raw tomato."
Garlic, of course, has also been important historically and to this day for its medicinal qualities.
Provençal Figurines by C. Galtier and E. Cattin, translated by John Lee (Editions Ouest-France, 13 rue du Breil, Rennes, 1996) provides a list of the top 20 Santons "essential" to the Provençal creche.
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