We all know what a Francophile I am, especially when it comes to food and wine.
But there is ONE thing the French do which really gets on my nerves!
In the first place, rare is the restaurant that uses good lettuce. Mesclun is considered some kind of luxury, and now that I’ve lived in Switzerland, I’m accustomed to eating the wild greens and mesclun fresh from the mountains. So the supermarket lettuce in France is really not to my liking.
The other thing that really annoys me is that they just throw a bit of mesclun on top of the salad, and the bowl is invariably too small to allow one to mix the greens and the vinaigrette without spilling it out onto the table, so I inevitably end up feeling like a klutz.
Of course, Julia Child’s Niçoise salad, when made with top quality, fresh, local ingredients, is impeccable. Ironically and unfortunately, Nice is about the hardest place to find a good Niçoise. The tomatoes are invariably hothouse from Holland, even in the middle of the summer, and the green beans are frozen in the height of the green bean season.
My conclusion is that French restaurants most often just throw salads together, and don’t consider it real cuisine, so they can’t be bothered. But if you really like or yearn for a salad, this is disappointing, especially since the salads are overpriced, as if they were “real” cuisine.
- Op-Ed: Why I don’t like French salads
- Potato News: Robuchon’s mashed potatoes, Swiss giant potatoes to be fed to pigs, calorie counting at chain restaurants, how potatoes changed the world
- Switzerland: Spontaneous Cuisine: Pan-fried Sérac cheese & potato salad
- French Food Quote: Daily Food Quote, August 29, 2011
- French Food Quote: Daily Food Quote, August 15, 2011