Life and travel in France, 3 years & counting

Where should I go next?…

entrée

So let’s continue our meal….

By now, I imagine you have made your order and it is probably 15 minutes since you have entered the restaurant or it may well be half an hour if you take your time to read the menu and you start with amuse-bouche and aperitif.

The first course to come is called “entrée”, the starter. Here I have chosen 6 common but delicious dishes that you should try next time you go to a French restaurant.

6. Salade Lyonnaise

salade lyonnaise

Lyon is the gastronomic capital of France and this salad is simply a must-try in a “bouchon” (a restaurant in Lyon that serves traditional Lyonnaise cuisine). Even for someone who doesn’t like salad, aka me, this is the only entrée I would order in Lyon (of course, you can find this salad in other regions).

It is not the most complicated salad with only cubed bacon and croutons, as well as a poached egg on top but it is the perfect salad!

5. Les huîtres

oysterA plate of 6 oysters normally costs 10 to 15 Euros if you order it separately in a restaurant. You are now paying maybe 20, 25 Euros for the oysters plus the main dish and dissert. So it is quite a bargain to take oysters as entrée.

Also, the French claim to have the best oysters in the world so how can you not try it if you have the chance?

However, you should know that the finest oysters come from Normandy, Brittany and Arcachon (southwest of Bordeaux). They produce oysters in the South but it is often smaller in size and do not have the same taste as there are no tidal currents in the Mediterranean.

4. Carpaccio de boeuf

carpaccioIt is originally an Italian dish but has then become one of French much-loved dishes.

There are a variety of ways to prepare Carpaccio but the most common is thinly sliced raw beef (yes, raw, uncooked!) seasoned with lemon and olive oil.

3. Carpaccio de saumon / Carpaccio de Saint-Jacque

tartare saumontartare st jacqueIt is another dish of Carpaccio, but this time it uses salmon or scallop. The preparation is almost the same as beef Carpaccio, normally with lemon and olive oil.

I think it is safe to say that French people love their food fresh. Among these 3 Carpaccio dishes, personally I would choose scallop. It is simply amazing!

2. Escargots (de Bourgogne)

escargotsEscargot is the French word for snail and there is no dish more French than escargot. And it is in the Burgundy reg

ion that you find the biggest snails. It is served mostly with butter, garlic and parsley.

Eating snails may seem a bit unappetizing, but I would say that it is an experience you have to have in France. I promise if you can forget for one second what you are putting in your mouth, it actually tastes good.

1. Foie gras

foie grasThe number one entrée has to be foie gras. In case you don’t know what it is, foie gras isthe liver of a goose or duck that has been specially fattened. It is regarded as a gourmet luxury dish and is served in many restaurants.

Nowadays, they mostly serve foie gras of duck because foie gras of goose is about double in price. If you ever want to try the top foie gras, then you should visit the Southwest region where they still produce it with goose in the traditional way.

It is enough to prepare foie gras with simply salt and pepper. Like most of the entrées, foie gras is served in small quantity. You should cut off pieces and place (not spread, you are not eating jam here) them on the toast.
I love entrée more than the other courses. I am sure there are other entrées as famous as these, but these are definitely the top 6 on my list.

Bon appétit 🙂

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