Book Club: Mastering the Art of French Eating

Tuesday, May 27, 2014 | Stamp in My Passport| , |

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

If there is one thing that is almost as good as eating French food, it would be reading about French food. For all of those foodie travel lovers out there, this is a must read. Ann Mah is a diplomat's wife who treated her few years stationed in France as a culinary adventure. She did not shy away from the pork fat, smelly cheeses, and questionable sausages that are staples in regional French cuisine. She went on a culinary pilgrimage throughout the French provinces with the goal of getting to the heart of such dishes as steak frites, anduillete, fondue, boeuf bourguignon and buckwheat crepes.

Similar to another American diplomat's wife, Julia Child, Ann finds comfort and belonging through cooking and learning about France through dishes. She interviews and learns from chefs whose recipes and methods have been handed down from generations. 

While I had not heard of half of the dishes Ann journeys to find, nor would I honestly care to try them, I am fascinated by her time in Paris and France. In my opinion, she talks about Roquefort one too many times for my taste. And anyone who truly loves Roquefort (whose mold can only be grown in certain caves, yes, caves) and Camembert, well, I have to question her sanity. 

Needless to say, she weaves her newfound culinary knowledge with her memoirs as a diplomat's wife whose husband is then quickly sent to Iraq alone for a year. Many of us, alone in a foreign country may stick to what we know, but Ann channels her inner Julia Child and learns to perfect boeuf bourguignon instead. 


Z K said...

This sounds so interesting! Have you read French Milk? It's similar except a graphic novel-ish sort of book. Hooray for book clubs!

Jess said...

No I haven't read it but it sounds right up my alley! And yes, I love reading books at the same time as people so I know I'll have at least a few to talk about it with.