Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

The Influence of France on Global Culinary Culture


Recommended Posts

Hello, Dorie, and thanks so much for participating in this eGullet conversation! Having worked from your cookbooks for several years, and having such a good time doing so, its truly an honor to have you here.

I have a question that is closely related to some of those that have already been asked. One of the things that has struck me is the enormous influence and widespread adoption of French patisserie (and French cuisine in general) around the world. As an American who has spent a lot of time in France and worked with some great French chefs, do you have any thoughts, insights, generalizations or anecdotes you'd like to share as to why France seems to have had such a salient impact on the 'global culinary culture'?

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Patrick, it’s I who should be thanking you, first for the great joy your baking and photographs bring me (and so many others), and second for helping to coordinate this Spotlight Conversation. Thank you – beaucoup and lots.

I’m by means an expert on the question you pose, but my feeling is that French cuisine and pastry have had such a great influence on cuisines across the world because of the rigor of French techniques and the repertoire of base recipes on which the cuisine is based.

Oh – and it’s delicious, too.

But, in many ways, I think the spread of French cuisine might be a result of something as practical as its ability to be spread. Because of the strict training French chefs get and because of the way the cuisine was codified by Escoffier, it is replicable. And I wouldn’t be surprised if this didn’t contribute to its successful dissemination.

Also, I think French food and pastry is important because the French have made them important. French cuisine is considered part of the country’s patrimony, something to be nurtured, protected and “watered” so it grows -- and something to be passed along. It is so important to the culture that, once a year, all the French schools participate in La Semaine de Gout, a week during which students are taught about classic French dishes and regional specialities. Chefs come to the classes and teach children how to taste, smell and, yes, cook. It is an effort to keep French cuisine alive, just as the French arts are kept alive.

Uh-oh -- I think I've rambled on and not answered your question. Is this what you were thinking of?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Uh-oh -- I think I've rambled on and not answered your question.  Is this what you were thinking of?

Yes, that's exactly the kind of answer I was looking for. Thank you!

Edited by Patrick S (log)

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...