For some French cuisine, here are a few tips on how to introduce a taste of France into your meals.
As time goes on and I add to the content on this website, I do hope to include a recipe now and then to help you prepare your taste buds and mindset for your hopefully upcoming trip to France. Or inversely, to help you keep some of the passion you developed for French cuisine when you came here last.
There are lots of things you can do to French-up your meals without going into hardcore cookery lessons. A few easy tips follow.
Probably the most overlooked aspect of mealtime is the table setting.
Dishes that match and are placed on the table with care, meaning the motifs of the plates are all facing the same direction. Matching silverware and glassware. Napkins, either paper or cloth that match the color of your dishes, a salt and pepper set and a pair of candles.
The French do this every single mealtime. The kids learn to set the table this way, at a very young age.
Nobody eats standing up in front of the fridge. Quite possibly because the French have learned long ago that even the most boring sludge of a meal tastes so very much better if it's attractively presented and consumed in a pleasant setting.
Forget this tip and even your most successful culinary efforts will be diminished. If you eat caviar off a paper towel it'll taste like rotten fish eggs.
Now on to the actual French cuisine.
Buying fresh ingredients is of supreme importance to the taste buds. If you must have something frozen, try and make sure it's surrounded with fresh components.
While recently participating in a writing challenge on the writer's forum “Goodreads”, the topic of coquilles st jacques came up.
“What is this?” I hear you ask from afar. A taste treat for disheartened taste buds, a culinary expression of happiness, or a physical manifestation of yumminess. And they're good for you! French sea scallops.
Here is a delicious recipe. Because it uses very fresh ingredients in a simple manner, it is typical of the wonderful French country meals!
Quiche is an open pastry filled with eggs, cream and a large variety of vegetables, meats or seafood. They can be as easy or as complex as you like. My favorite variety is made with whatever I've got left in the fridge.
Foie gras is a true French delicacy, but one that Americans generally do not have much experience with.
Read here about it - what it is, where it comes from, and how to eat it to enjoy it to the utmost pleasure.