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6 Most Famous Foods in France and its History

Updated: Jul 11, 2021

We all know the story of the mouse who wanted to be a famous chef. I felt the same when I watched Ratatouille. Although I am not a famous French chef, I wanted to write down the five most famous French dishes and their history. 5 Most Famous Foods in France.

1. Croissant

The croissants, which are sold fresh in many French restaurants, are mostly consumed as breakfast products. Croissants can be filled with chocolate, jam, raisins, and even cream cheese. This crescent-shaped pastry is usually made from puff pastry, but can alternatively be made with yeast dough.

The invention of the croissant is changing from place to place. Some claim it took place in Vienna in 1683, others claim it took place in Budapest in 1683. Although these details change, the rest of the story is always the same. During the siege of the city by the Turks, the bakers made a crescent-shaped pastry, and thus the croissant was born! According to another claim, the Vienna-born Queen Marie-Antoinette brought the croissant to France and its popularity increased.


2. Macarons

Macaron, the most famous of the French desserts, draws attention with its cute appearance. Macaron takes its name from the Italian words "maccherone" or "makaroni" meaning "thin dough". So what does France have to do with it?

Catherine de Medici, the daughter of the Medici, one of the well-established families of Italy, married II.Henry in 1533 and she introduced France with macarons.

Then, at the wedding of Louis XIV and Marie-Therese in Saint-Jean-de-Luz in 1660, they welcome their guests with macarons, and the popularity of macarons increases.

During the French Revolution, two Carmelite nuns seeking shelter made and sold macarons for a living and became known as ‘’Macaron Sisters’’.

However, the macarons made at that time did not contain any special taste. But later on Laduree, the famous patisserie of France, put buttercream between two macarons, making the macarons even better.

Ladurée’s flamboyant macarons have been so successful that they are today the world's most famous macaron manufacturer.


3. Onion Soup

Onion soup is one of Paris' classics and one of the most famous. It is a broth covered with cheese and filled with oven-baked onions.

Its history dates back to the Antique Rome period, as it is easy to grow onions. But the modern French version originated in the 18th century from broth and caramelized onions.

Onion Soup
Onion Soup

4. Coq au vin

Coq au vin is a classic French casserole made with chicken legs, bacon, mushrooms, and pearl onions. Coq au vin means "rooster with wine". But the recipe usually uses chicken or capon. Although Burgundy wine is used in general, regional variations of the dish are also available.

It was popularized by Julia Child.

The history of coq au vin dates back to the Gauls and Julius Caesar.

5. Ratatouille

More than a cute mouse, Ratatouille is one of the iconic dishes of France. Ratatouille, which consists of vegetables cooked at high temperatures with very little oil, is usually consumed as a side dish. Ingredients are tomato, garlic, onion, zucchini, eggplant, red pepper. There is no eggplant in the original recipe.

Ratatouille used to be considered poor peasants' food. Vegetable scraps were boiled and eaten together.


Clik for 13 Most Beautiful Places in Paris , France

6. Souffle

Souffle means puff in French. The history of the souffle coincides with the invention of the whisk. It is obtained by whisking butter, milk, and flour. But in 1742, French chef Vincent La Chapelle wrote a recipe called omelette soufflée in his cookbook. And this is the first souffle recipe. But souffle can be made from many materials, not just chocolate. souffle is not only sweet but also salty. The sweet ones are made from milk, sugar, and eggs. The salty ones are eggs and bechamel sauce.


Want to learn more about French food? Click here to buy Rebekah Peppler's book full of classic French recipes, A Table: Recipes for Cooking and Eating the French Way!

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