The use of local and seasonal ingredients is one of the strengths of French cuisine. Rural cuisine is particularly prominent, with many distinctive and world-famous dishes created far away from the city lights.
Yves Stabile, a chef and restaurateur in Annes-et-Beaulieu in the Périgord region in the southwest of the country, said: “We are lucky in France because there are different agricultural areas about every 100 kilometers, through the architecture and cooking of this place This can be seen in tradition.
“We have a wide variety of products, but the way each product is made differs from region to region. From north to south, each region has its own characteristics and characteristics,” explains Stabile.
The expert on French country cuisine added, “France is on the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean, but the way fish is cooked in Normandy or Brittany is completely different to that on the Riviera.”
famous french dishes
In Normandy, butter and cream are important ingredients in food preparation, while in the Riviera region, olive oil is of great importance and is used to enrich a range of unique dishes.
For example, the Périgord region is famous for its duck confit, Alsace has chutney, and in Cannes and Nice we find pesaladière (a type of pizza) in addition to the Nicoise salad. According to Stabile, Toulouse has a cassoulet, a dish made from white beans.
As for duck, it is an integral part of Périgord cuisine, since almost everything is cooked in its fat.
Simple but great dishes
To prepare the duck legs, Stabile soaks them in salted water with bay leaves and coriander seeds for 24 hours, then simmers them in duck fat and stores them in jars.
Finally, he bakes them in the oven to get that unique golden color and crispy texture, then serves them with potatoes.
Talking about the delicacy, he said: “This is a typical family dish… Although it is easy to prepare (transfer duck), I always say that simple things cannot be ordinary.”
Poor people’s cuisine has become a common phenomenon
Food blogger and writer Sandy Neumann, on the other hand, has been living with her husband since 2018 in an old house in Touschan, a small village in Occitania in the south of France.
Neumann, who considers herself an “ambassador of French cuisine,” said traditional dishes are often simple and she emerged out of necessity for them.
Marseille’s famous “bouillabaisse” is considered very important. Neumann is famous for making her own delicious fish soup similar to “bouillabaisse”. She said, “This was originally a dish specially prepared for poor fishermen. It was made from leftover fish.” Made from stuff like that.” From today’s catch.
To prepare the soup, in addition to cooked fish, mussels and sometimes crustaceans are required, prepared in a soup that is a mixture of tomatoes, onions, garlic, fennel and saffron. It is usually served with a meat sauce made of garlic, olive oil, saffron and bread.
The Story of the Nicoise Salad
Neumann also cleared up misconceptions about the famous “Salad Nicoise,” which is named after the Mediterranean city. “There’s been a long-standing debate about how to make a great Nicoise salad,” she says. “It was originally a poor man’s dish. It consists of tomatoes, olive oil, olives and anchovies; vegetables are also added, depending on what’s in season.
Today, a “real” Nicoise salad contains green lettuce leaves, tomatoes, green or red peppers, radishes, scallions and purple artichokes, along with a hard-boiled egg and small black olives. Also added are anchovy fillets marinated in olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.
Nicoise salad is usually served in a large deep dish.