What do people eat in France?


The French cuisine is legend; cooking is considered an art. Regional traditions are strong. There are several types of cooking, ranging from hearty, inexpensive fare to sophisticated dishes with costly ingredients and complex sauces. Nouvelle cuisine, which emerged in the 1960's, was a reaction to this heavy style of cooking. It features lighter ingredients, smaller portions and an artistic presentation. Although resisted by the French, fast food is gaining in popularity and most kinds are available. French breads and patisserie are well-known abroad, for example croissants, and baguette.


Table manners are important. While at the table hands should remain above the table. Elbows should not be placed on the table. When eating out, the person who invites or makes the suggestion is the one who pays.

There are usually three meals a day, breakfast, supper and dinner. Often, children have a snack at 4 PM. Breakfast is in the morning when people get up; supper at noon or before 1 PM and dinner around 7 or 8 PM. Breakfast and dinner are usually eaten at home. Often, during work, children eat at school or at home depending on their parents, workers eat either at home or in a cafeteria (and so do their children), and people can eat out at noon with friends. Dinner out is generally associated with great occasions.

At mealtime usually, everyone has a seat to eat at the table. The whole family eats at the same time, together. The hands should be on the table, so that people can see what one does with his hands. Not showing one's hands is considered impolite as it is seen as concealing something from other people's view.

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