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When we read about France, we read about the foundational recipes, the mother sauces, and the Canon. It’s all grand, involved, borderline uptight. France Week, for us, is everything outside of those limitations: It's how real French people cook. From the shortcuts they use in their own kitchens (quelle horror!), to the fact that what’s new in French wine is not drinking French wine, and an actual tour of Paris (in a Google map designed by our own community), it's all here to take you beyond the haute France you already know, to the easygoing France we love.

The Genius in France

Say adieu to velouté and salut to the no-accent, no-cook sauce vierge. It may not be a mother sauce, but is definitely a Genius one. You can find the recipe here.

We have quite a few recipes that are French in origin and Genius is execution. Here are some that might go well with sauce tomate sauce vierge, the best tomato sauce.

Todd Coleman's Potato Gratin

Todd Coleman's Potato Gratin by Genius Recipes

Roger Vergé's Fried Eggs with Wine Vinegar

Roger Vergé's Fried Eggs with Wine Vinegar by Genius Recipes

Michel Richard's Glazed and Glistening Haricots Verts

Michel Richard's Glazed and Glistening Haricots Verts by Genius Recipes

Patricia Wells' Fake Frites

Patricia Wells' Fake Frites by Genius Recipes

Five 5-Ingredient Desserts

"There are French desserts in the vicinity of which you dare not breathe, lest they crumble, deflate, or melt with your disturbance," writes Sarah Jampel, our resident infographic mastermind. These five desserts are not them—and their five ingredients don't need to be ordered days in advance (no edible rosebuds or figs-just-plucked-from-the-tree here, merci). Find where you stand in this flowchart and get your sugar on.

https://food52.com/blog/19863

Below, Lindsey Tramuta, author of The New Paris, tells us about a particular 5-ingredient pastry that most people overlook (but shouldn't).

The Pastry I Judge All French Bakeries By
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The Pastry I Judge All French Bakeries By

The Dishes That Define France

Food deemed "the best" is often subjective, unverifiable, and impersonal. So we asked people who know a thing or two about French food and culture to write about (and provide recipes for) the dishes they think deliver France on a plate.

Writer Adam Gopnik, of New Yorker and Paris to the Moon fame, talks about the shallot-showered entrecôte that defines France for him—in that hackneyed way everyone talks about "the dish that defines France." See the others:

The Cake Named after the Patron Saint of Pastry Chefs

The Cake Named after the Patron Saint of Pastry Chefs by Ghaya Oliveira

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The First Thing Eric Kayser Eats When He Returns to Paris

The First Thing Eric Kayser Eats When He Returns to Paris by Eric Kayser

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The ABÇs of French Cooking—in One Fish Recipe

The ABÇs of French Cooking—in One Fish Recipe by Emily Kaiser Thelin

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Making Soufflé Is Simple, If You Know Its Secrets

Making Soufflé Is Simple, If You Know Its Secrets by Anne Willan

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The Food52 Community Goes to France

Many members of the Food52 community have, at some point in time, traveled to Paris. Lucky for us, they've shared their favorite spots on this very handy Google map. Let them guide you through the City of Light. A few of them brought back some French-ified recipes with them, and we'll be posting a new one every day this week.

http://bit.ly/2sETJAq
Gravity-Defying "Basic" Buttermilk Pancakes

Gravity-Defying "Basic" Buttermilk Pancakes by charticus

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A 3-Step Tapenade That Will Have You Saying *Très Bon*

A 3-Step Tapenade That Will Have You Saying *Très Bon* by Rita Banci

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A Traditional Chicken Dish from Lyon That Comes Together in Under an Hour

A Traditional Chicken Dish from Lyon That Comes Together ... by ChefJune

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A Grilled Take on a French Bistro Classic

A Grilled Take on a French Bistro Classic by QueenSashy

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What Happens When a Tartine Gets a Texas-Style Twist
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What Happens When a Tartine Gets a Texas-Style Twist

Salads!

http://f52.co/2sNBadl

Enter the wonderful world of French composed salads, where each salad name carries a story of a region a grocery list of the region's famous foodstuffs. Think lettuce layered with fried potatoes and melty cheese; or a refreshing Vietnamese rice noodle salad ("Bo Bun"), which is the it-salad in Paris right now. And Ann Mah, author of Mastering the Art of French Eating, has tossed together the ways French people argue about salad. (Yes, it's a thing.)

Photo by Libby VanderPloeg

Can't get your hands on Comté or jambon de pays? Fear not: A composed salad is really just a showcase of ingredients from your region, so hit up your local farmers market and invent one of your own, using this foolproof method:

Follow This Formula, Make Meal-Worthy Salads with Just This & That
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Follow This Formula, Make Meal-Worthy Salads with Just This & That

Kitchen Confidence: French Edition

Despite how it looks, not every leisurely French dinner comes together effortlessly. So we gathered a few tips and tricks from people who have reckoned with French kitchens (and gained some culinary confidence in the process), so we can learn how to churn out tarte tatins (or throw together a meat and cheese plate) with aplomb.

7 Cooking Schools in France That Go Beyond the Expected
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7 Cooking Schools in France That Go Beyond the Expected
A Few Indispensable Cooking Hacks I Picked Up in France

A Few Indispensable Cooking Hacks I Picked Up in France by thehappycook

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How to Ace a Farmers Market in France

How to Ace a Farmers Market in France by Carrie Speaking

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Let's Dive Into French Culture

Traditional French food culture (our perception of it, at least) is changing to reveal a diverse, textured landscape that's well-adapted to modernity. We asked people who actually live in France to tell us what's changing and what's staying the same.

10 Cliches About French Eating Habits That Are Actually True

10 Cliches About French Eating Habits That Are Actually True by Zazie Tavitian

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Here's How France Does Frozen Food (Yes, Better Than Us)

Here's How France Does Frozen Food (Yes, Better Than Us) by thehappycook

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Finally, France Is Warming Up to Other Countries' Wines

Finally, France Is Warming Up to Other Countries' Wines by Tom Mullen

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In Lyon, the So-Called Stomach of France, Vegan Food Thrives

In Lyon, the So-Called Stomach of France, Vegan Food Thrives by Carrie Speaking

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Plus: Tessa Kiros (who does not live in France but authored the cookbook Provence to Pondicherry) tells us what she learned about French food from the people who live and cook in France's former colonies.

Chez My Name, Chez My Name

The French are so into their homes that their language has a preposition for it: chez ("in the home of"). All week, we'll be posting tips—from Instagram, David Lebovitz, and us—on how to turn your home into chez you, only with prettier curtains and flaky sea salt containers.

8 Iconic French Brands for Channeling Your Inner Francophile
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8 Iconic French Brands for Channeling Your Inner Francophile
6 Gloriously Easy Ways to Entertain Like a Parisian

6 Gloriously Easy Ways to Entertain Like a Parisian by David Lebovitz

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19 Très Inspiring, Très Dreamy French Interiors (+ Design Tips)

19 Très Inspiring, Très Dreamy French Interiors (+ Design... by Hana Asbrink

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Say bonjour to our best-selling Staub French oven, now topped off with a brass rooster. 300 of these babies just flew out of the motherland and into our Shop (and our Shop only), just for France Week. Catch them (on sale) before they go poof.

http://f52.co/2rrRoou

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