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France, the country known to the world for its fashion and food. Fine dines and fine food is what the world talk about. French food is something, which is carefully made with the finest qualities of spices, which are grown locally. The produce heavily influences their food, which is readily available to them in the peripheries. The use of its herbs and spices are grown locally, in traditional combinations is what makes the unique signature of French cuisine.
The southeastern region of France boasts about its cultivation of olives and olive oil, which is the quintessential ingredient of almost every cuisine. The region is also the largest producer of herbs, tomatoes, and garlic. Garlic along with anchovies is a major ingredient in many of this region’s sausages.
South Central France is the home to some of the most renowned cheeses, including Cantal and Bleu d’Auvergne.
The regions of Provence and Cote d’Azur are rich in quality citrus, vegetables, fruits, and herbs. This region also produces the superb olive oil. Lavender, another major ingredient used in many delicacies is found in Haute Provence. Also, the place is home to many major herbs. Herbs grow in abundance in this region. Thyme, rosemary, fennel, basil, sage, savory, tarragon, oregano, marjoram, and bay leaf are all found in this region, and all these herbs play a major role in almost every French cuisine. Basil, chervil, and tarragon add up to a bright sweetness, countered by the earthy notes of thyme and rosemary, while fennel and French lavender add a wonderful floral tinge to the cuisine.
Honey Is Another Prized Ingredient Of This Region
"Prized Ingredient Of This Region"
Goat cheese, lamb, air-dried sausages, chicken, beef are all popular products of this region. The region of Espelette is proud of its pepper heritage. This pepper has its traditional method of growing and drying too. This pepper has its own precious aroma in different dishes throughout the country, in fact throughout the world. The perfect harvest of this pepper can be credited to the Basque women. They went off the board with the cultivation, planted it in various landscapes to come up with the best spot for its cultivation. They tried selective breeding, till the time they came up with the perfect specimen- The ‘Gorria’. The Basque woman can refer to this ‘pepper’ as her own. She aces the skill from start to finish- by growing, drying, grinding and even selling.
Some Of The Local Herbs Of France Are Mentioned Below
- Fines Herbs: It includes Tarragon, Chives, Chervil, and Parsley. They are called so because of their delicate flavors. These are majorly used for seasoning at the end of a dish, instead of using it while cooking the dish.
- Tarragon: Licorice flavored- this herb is majorly used in cooking poultry and seafood. Saffron: One of the most expensive spices of the world! It is majorly used in seafood dishes like Bouillabaisse.
- Bouquet Garni: This ‘Garnished Bouquet’ is usually wrapped in a cheesecloth. It is used to flavor soups and stocks. It is a combination of sage, parsley, bay leaf, thyme, and peppercorns.
The food found in France is majorly influenced by what is locally grown in the area. Every herb is carefully chosen according to its qualities and its easy availability.