Lately, I cannot stop reading. More specifically I cannot stop reading food memoirs. Perhaps this is because I secretly wish I was qualified to write one and perhaps it's because I like to eat. Some deep mysteries of life are sadly, unsolvable. Elizabeth Bard has written my all time favorite kind of food memoir, one that combines food with cross-cultural experiences (see Shark Fins Soup and Sichuan Peppers by Fuschia Dunlop for another excellent example).
The gist of the story is this: She falls in love with a French guy and moves to Paris. They eat good food because (according to food memoirs) that is the only kind of food they have in France. She finds herself lost and bored without a work visa. Poor, poor girl. I tried hard to feel sympathetic but I didn't because I personally have to work my ass off every day. She caught me attention though in her description of the French because they sound a heck of a lot like Colombians: late to everything, weird bureaucracy, fatalistic thought process, etc. She does a wonderful job delineating the cultural differences between the French and Americans. Even better? She does this kindly without looking down her nose at either group which unfortunately is a rare skill.
Admittedly it's not really clear to me why food/recipes are used as a framing device in this book, but I really couldn't care less because the recipes look friggin delicious. If I wasn't buried under 5,000 other food related projects I would be aggressively cooking my way through this book too. Instead I'm recommending it to you in the hopes that you'll cook some of the recipes and invite me over to try them.