The art of French foodThe French believe in food. It’s somewhere between art and religion. Every step of the process of preparing and eating it is to be savored, not rushed. This was the message that Julia Child popularized in her bestselling book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. To honor Julia’s role in bringing French cooking to middle America, Chicago’s TimeLine Theatre Company premiered a play of her life in 2008. To Master the Art received strong reviews and five Jeff Award nominations, and re-inspired Americans to bring the beauty and flavor of French food into their own homes.
Before heading off to school or work, French people fuel up with toasted bread with butter and/or jam, a simple pastry such as a croissant (sans butter), a hard breakfast biscuit (cookie), or cereal.And of course, coffee, tea, coffee, hot chocolate, and coffee are essential to any French breakfast.
The Chicagoan’s Guide to Dining in ParisWhat’s even better than eating at a French restaurant in Chicago? Eating at one in Paris, of course. Caution: once you eat at Maison Parisienne, you may want to immediately book a trip to France. Here are some dining-out tips to help you out once you’re there:
- Chicagoans who are used to having a fantastic array of restaurants open nearly round the clock may be surprised to find that French restaurants typically serve lunch only from approximately 12:00-2:30 p.m., and dinner from about 7:30-11:00 p.m.
Quiche makes you manly“Real men don’t eat quiche,” the American saying goes. Actually it’s not so much a saying as it is the title of a book published in 1982, which originated the stereotype of quiche as a fancy or “feminine” food. Authentic French quiche knows no boundaries of gender or politics, however, and we present here a brief list of some of the most famous (and manly) men in history who have eaten quiche:
Many French sandwiches are adaptations (or, as they might say, improvements) to sandwiches from other countries.The sandwich itself was invented by (and named for) the British Earl of Sandwich in the eighteenth century, but it didn’t take long for this new dish to get the French treatment:
Authentic French croissantsLet’s talk about croissants. Many Americans are familiar with the buttery, crescent-shaped rolls that are the hallmark of French pastries, but they have so many variations that it’s worth digging into a little bit deeper.
An American’s guide to French restaurantsWhen you imagine dining in a French restaurant, do you picture a fancy place with expensive, difficult-to-pronounce food, served by snooty waiters who judge you? Anyone who’s traveled to France can tell you that the experience of eating in a French restaurant in the U.S. is very different from dining in a genuine restaurant in France. Here we will offer you a few tips to help American travelers feel more at home when enjoying an authentic French dining experience:
Macaroons and moreWhen most Americans hear the word “macaroons,” they may typically think of the chewy clusters of shredded coconut commonly sold in stores and restaurants. The fact is that almost every country in the world has its own version of the macaroon. French macaroons, however, are clearly the best. For the sake of this post, we will refer to them by the English word, although the correct term in French is macaron. But don’t worry – at Maison Parisienne, you can order them in whichever language you want.