French cuisine is loved by many cultures beyond its fair home country; its indulgent flavors and textures are the source of creative dishes that wow tastebuds, often producing 'oohs' and 'ahhs' at the table. While you may experience a French dish here or there in a restaurant, knowing more about what goes into French cuisine and its preparation can help you to understand and appreciate what you're eating even more.
French sauces-the key to French cuisine
If there is one thing that French chefs know how to create, it's a delicious sauce. These sauces often require time and patience, but French food was never meant to be rushed. Sauces are often based with a delicious stock, and are then joined with various spices and flavors, creams and more to make the perfect addition to any entree. Basic sauces that hail from France include bechamel sauce, veloute sauce and more.
The basics made beautiful
French cuisine can elude an air of superiority and complexity, but many French dishes are based on basic ingredients and technique. That being said, the French pride themselves on only using the best and freshest ingredients - shortcuts and generic replacements will not stand under the auspices of a French chef. Some basic ingredients, such as unsalted butter, are staples in French cooking; salted butter will alter dishes and sauces greatly if used instead. Salt can later be added for flavor if necessary.
Popular French ingredients
The French pride themselves on using only the best and finest ingredients in their cooking; in their recipes' repertoire, you'll find various common and rare items. Some of the staples in French cooking include smoked salmon and caviar for appetizers, garnishes and more; truffles, a prized delicacy that can cost up to thousands of dollars by the pound; foie gras, as a dish; and even basics such as oil and vinegar, with an extra touch of culinary design.