Culture of French Food
French food is one of the main reasons tourists flock to France, but it's not just about what is on the plate. There is an etiquette and culture surrounding French food and dining that you should know about before you visit. To put it bluntly, if you are trying to budget for your trip, eating in a restaurant may be out of the question. It's better to have a picnic in a park or eat at home using groceries from the store.
Food Culture in France
When I first moved to France, I would eat lunch at the school cafeteria with my colleagues. Each day, on the menu, was a choice of two main dishes (meat and vegetarian option), bread, cheese, dessert, and wine.
Often there were four or five types of Cheese at Lunch!
I thought this was very strange because we don't even think about having wine with lunch or having more than two courses in America. I didn't know anything about it until I realized how much money my colleagues were spending on lunch every day!
It turns out that eating out for lunch in France is quite expensive, and most people can't afford it. For example, a three-course meal with wine at a popular restaurant can be costly.
French people Love to eat out
French people like to eat out. It is a big part of their social life. They usually go to a restaurant with family and friends on weekends and during weekdays.
When eating out, French people usually order starters as an appetizer. The main course (most restaurants don't allow customers to order the main course), and finally dessert.
French people tend to complain about service and prices in restaurants. This is because service standards are always very high in France, so they become very demanding due to this high standard.
French People enjoy their Food
According to internationalliving website the French enjoy various foods, including meats, fish, vegetables, fruits, bread, cheeses, and wine. In addition, there are many regional specialties throughout France, from the cassoulet in the southwest to bouillabaisse on the Mediterranean coast.
The French also enjoy pastries and desserts with coffee after meals. One of France's most famous desserts is called Crème Brûlée (Burnt Cream). It is made by baking vanilla custard in an oven or under a broiler to create a crunchy caramelized top layer.
Facts about French Food Culture
It's a myth that French people eat baguettes with every meal. Although it's common to see people carrying baguettes under their arms, they are only eaten for breakfast or lunch and never for dinner. Baguettes have also been called "the staff of life," and the word itself means "wand" or "baton."
France is famous for its sophisticated cuisine, but there are many other facets to its food culture. Here are a few facts about French food culture that may surprise you:
- The French eat at least three meals a day and usually in courses.
- They eat a lot of bread, but not cakes or pastries.
- They eat lots of cheese, around 25 kilos each year!
- The French eat more fish than meat.
- France is the largest consumer of organic food in Europe.
- In France, there are no microwaves in most kitchens!
Cooking in French Culture
Food is prepared by the chefs with great care and attention to detail.
- French cuisine is very sophisticated, but we would like to tell you today that some other things about it might be a bit surprising, especially if you're not used to French eating habits!
Most popular facts about French food culture that will blow your mind
- The real name of the "French fries" is actually "Belgian fries" because they were first introduced in Belgium in 1680!
- The first chocolate bar was invented by François-Louis Cailler in 1819 in Switzerland.
- There are over 400 different types of cheese!
- It is estimated that there are about 36,000 bakeries in France!
- In France, a law prohibits supermarkets from throwing away or destroying unsold food; instead, supermarkets have to donate unsold food to charities or for animal feed.
- In France, it is illegal to put ketchup on dishes such as steak or fries, except for certain fast-food restaurants which serve burgers with fries.
French Food Culture is a Unique Culture
- French food culture is all about family, friends, and socializing. Food is a way for French people to come together and spend time with loved ones. Food is enjoyed and savored; it's not rushed like some countries. In France, food is taken seriously and not eaten on the go or in large quantities. Meals are consistent at the same time every day.
- French people have a healthy relationship with food because they have a balanced diet consisting of all food groups. For example, the French eat meat but not in huge portions every day.
- Cheese is a common staple for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Cheese is usually served at the end of the meal after the main dish has been eaten. The cheese course can consist of three to ten types of cheese (including vegetarian options).
French people eat in courses starting with an appetizer, main course, and dessert.
Why is food important to French Culture?
The French have a saying that goes, "The stomach rules the mind." It means that if you're hungry, you won't be able to think about anything else. And this is just one reason why food is so important in France. France's culinary art is world-famous and renowned for its quality and variety.
- Food is almost a national obsession in France. Whenever there are many reasons to celebrate, the French will always find an excuse to gather around food and wine.
- It's easy to discover the depth of the French passion for food by visiting many local markets or even supermarkets. You'll see such things as an incredible array of bread, cheeses, oysters, fresh produce with a wide choice of fruits and vegetables, wines, and much more.
Another example of how important food is in France can be seen when you consider their traditional meal times: breakfast at 7:00 am, lunch at noon, afternoon snack (le goûter) at 3:30 pm (for kids only), dinner around 8:00 pm.
Oh yes! And don't forget Le Croissant... the French people love them so much that they eat them every day!
What is France known for food?
Food is one of the things that France is known for. Some of the most famous and delicious French food includes:
- Baguette - long, thin loaf of bread.
- Boeuf bourguignon - a beef stew cooked in red wine, traditionally Burgundy, and served with potatoes or noodles.
- Cassoulet - a rich stew from Toulouse made from white beans and meat, usually pork sausages and goose.
- Crêpe - a thin pancake made of buckwheat flour and filled with sweet or savory mixtures.
- Croissant - a light roll made with butter and often filled with chocolate or cheese - is typically eaten at breakfast.
- Éclair - a long, thin pastry filled with custard or cream and topped with chocolate icing.
- Foie gras - goose or duck liver pate.
- Fromage frais/fromage Blanc - fresh cheese made from milk (not to be confused with fromage frais/fromage Blanc dessert).
- Jambon-beurre or jambon and pain beurre - ham sandwich on baguette contains literally "ham-butter".
- Pain au chocolat - croissant shaped bread
What is French Culture Famous for?
French culture is famous for several things, perhaps none more than its rich cuisine. French cooking is known worldwide, from haute cuisine to a simple Croque monsieur.
In addition to food, France also has a long history of artistic paintings and sculptures, dating back to prehistoric times. Some of the most famous artworks in the world were created by French artists like Paul Cézanne and Henri Matisse.
Literature was also an important part of French culture in the 16th century, with the birth of the novel as a popular form of writing. The popularity of this genre continued into the 17th century when playwrights such as Jean Racine and Molière began writing plays that are still performed today.
Music has always played an important role in French culture as well. There are many different styles, from classical to jazz and everything in between. However, all these styles have harmony, which can be heard throughout France's musical history from medieval times through the modern day.
French culture is known for its wide variety and diversity in music, literature, artistry, architecture fashion, among other fields.
Unique Eating Traditions that are allowed in France
Anyone who's been to France has noticed the difference between French eating habits and those of the rest of the world. It's not just dinner that's different, but also lunch and even breakfast.
What makes French Meals so Unique? Here are Seven Reasons:
- The French love their food. A recent survey showed that 89% of French people enjoy cooking. They also like to eat well, with 46% claiming they would rather spend money on food than clothes. This is a culture where food isn't simply a means to an end; it's an event in itself.
- The French like to take their time over meals. Today, most people don't have the time to devote two hours to a lunch break, but in France, it's still common for people to leave work at midday and eat a three-course meal with wine before returning at 2 pm or 3 pm.
- The French eat small portions. While many North American restaurants serve portions big enough for two or even three people, French restaurants serve smaller amounts. This is because the French tend to eat more slowly and leave the table feeling satisfied rather than stuffed.
- The French don't drink milk with their meals. While milk and cereals are very popular for breakfast, most adults drink water or coffee.
French Food Culture in UK
Many people don't know that in the UK, there are more French restaurants than Italian restaurants. This is a fact! It's because British people love French food and it's easy to eat French food all day also you can try these recipes from expatica website.
- Breakfast: croissant
- Lunch: a sandwich with cheese or ham
- Dinner: steak frites (steak with French fries)
Etiquettes of French People
- First, an important thing to understand is that the French are big into table manners and etiquette, so there are rules to follow. Here are the basics:
- If you're invited over to someone's house for dinner, it's best to take something. Flowers or wine are common offerings.
- When you arrive at the table, be prepared to shake hands with everyone (if they're close enough). This is the norm even if you've known these people for years.
- When taking your seat at the table, pull out your chair and sit down only after the person who invited you does (yes, even if it's a family member).
- Wait until everyone has been served before starting to eat. There will be a signal for this (often a "bon appétit" spoken by the hostess); until then, don't touch your food!
- Eat slowly and chew with your mouth closed.
- Keep your elbows off the table.
- Don't put anything back on your plate; if it didn't fit originally, it doesn't belong there now!
In the end I would like to say that French cuisine is based on the seasons and is known for its use of fresh, local ingredients to showcase the flavors of the food at their peak as described in study. In addition, the French have a strong relationship with the land and their food, evidenced in the slow meals shared among family and friends.