Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Putting it all together

I've really enjoyed writing this series of posts on shopping for and preparing meals "the French way." But, as the week went on, it struck me that perhaps I should refer to this as "the fresh way." The habit of shopping several times each week or shopping at the farmer's market really stems from the desire to use the freshest ingredients available.

I've always loved cooking, though meal preparation during the week was always a rushed affair. However, by making some small changes, shopping and cooking have become something I enjoy every day. As Mireille Guiliano says, "French DNA is not required for the experience . . . it is a question of conditioning and priorities of which you may find that you share more with the French than you realized."

Putting it all together, one only needs to make a few small changes:
  • push back the dinner hour
  • have a variety of meals to take advantage of what is fresh at the grocer
  • keep the fridge and pantry stocked with reliable staples
  • locate a farmer's market and buy seasonal when possible
  • use a pretty market bag or basket when shopping and don't overbuy
  • eat bread!
As I said, I have enjoyed writing this series of posts, and I have really appreciated your comments and questions. Merci! I think I want to do another series; I like the focus it gives my writing. But, what topic?


  1. Ooooh I love your blog header... where is that? BEAUTIFUL!!!

  2. Thank you, thank you. The photo is of the old city of Annecy, in France. Although I have many photos of Annecy, I can't take credit for this one.

  3. I really enjoyed this series. Write about what you know. Lucky for me, that seems to be the French lifestyle. No matter what it is, I know I will enjoy the topic!

  4. I think the European way of living chicly but frugally would be timely right now.
    It seems the French and Italians have always embraced frugal lifestyles -- not wasting food in cooking, shopping with a discerning eye, making do, believing that less is more ....

  5. Yes! especially to *pushing back the dinner
    hour*. My sister is very chic and she serves
    a wonderful meal at about 7:30 pm (or later) which is very late by most American standards, but so civilized. I really want to incorporate this one, thanks, La

  6. I loved this series, it was very enjoyable.

  7. Andi and Stephanie, merci beaucoup!

    la, yes, 7:30 is late by American standards, but it works for us. A late dinner is a pleasant and relaxing way to end the day.

    Kristi, living chic but frugally is a timely idea. Not sure I have enough ideas to write a series, but, perhaps some guest contributors, oui? Would you consider being a contributor?

  8. Would love to read about French beauty/skin care, French role models for women as they age, anything about personal style, frugal home decorating, French sweets, ....

    I really loved your food series; it was so inspirational.

  9. Sorry, didn't realize that I was still logged into Google under my son's account. That most recent comment was from MARSI, not Sam.

  10. LOL, Marsi! The perils of using a shared computer.

    I am SO not qualified to write about personal style or home decorating. I might be able to write un peu write about French skin care and products But French role models for women as they age, now that is something I can relate to. I will think on that--merci.

  11. Annecychic,
    Sure, that would be fun. You are my new favorite blog that I love to check in with everyday for inspiration. (It used to be Eurochic, but she's on a hiatus, it would seem. Although she's commented a few times on FC in the past few months) I've done writing on living frugally but chicly from an Italian perspective, but could easily change that to a "european" lifestyle. Kristi

  12. Great! I'm thinking in a few weeks it would be fun to do another series. I will ask readers for either a frugal chic idea, or, if ask if they want to guest post. It will be fun.

    I LOVED reading EuroChic, in fact, it was her site that inspired me to create my own blog. I didn't know she posted on FC; does she post under EuroChic or another name? I miss her posts!

  13. She used to post under her name, which she may want to keep private (I can email you) and lately she's been posting under Eurochic. I have her email address and we are my space friends so I should probably contact her and make sure everything is OK. I miss her posts, as well. I'll put together a frugal chic post. Just let me know how long it should be etc. (I'll email you on FC)