A Bite-Sized History of France: Gastronomic Tales of Revolution, War, and Enlightenment

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Product Details
$18.99  $17.66
New Press
Publish Date
5.4 X 8.4 X 1.0 inches | 0.9 pounds

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About the Author
Stéphane Hénaut's wide-ranging career in food includes working in the Harrods fromagerie, cooking for the Lord Mayor of London's banquets, and selling obscure vegetables in a French fruiterie. He lives in Berlin.

Jeni Mitchell is a teaching fellow in the Department of War Studies, King's College London. She lives in Berlin.

Praise for A Bite-Sized History of France
"Julia Child developed her passion for French food when she and her husband, Paul, moved to Paris in 1948. I think they would have enjoyed thumbing through 'A Bite-Sized History of France'. . . . The writing is clever, amusing, and knowledgeable."
--The Wall Street Journal

"In this Franco-American couple's not-so-bite-sized history, the complex political, historical, religious and social factors that shaped some of the country's most iconic dishes and culinary products are explored in a way that will make you rethink every sprinkling of fleur de sel."
--Christine Muhlke, The New York Times Book Review

"This impressive book intertwines tales of gastronomy, culture, war, and revolution . . . with brisk wit [and] imagination."
--The Christian Science Monitor

"Pack this one if you're going abroad--or if you're simply hungry. The authors use food and wine as a way to trace French history from ancient times through today."

"This engaging book recounts the history of France through its food . . . in lively vignettes."
--Foreign Affairs

"A fascinating history of France through food [that is] exceptionally well-researched. This culinary history is a treat for Francophiles."
--Publishers Weekly

"A husband and wife--he is French; she, American--move briskly through the history of France with a picnic basket full of information about the connections between history and gastronomy. . . . A genial journey through history that will leave readers both satiated and ravenous."
--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"A very cool book about the intersections of food and history."
--Michael Pollan, New York Times bestselling author of How to Change Your Mind and The Omnivore's Dilemma

"There is so much delicious information about French food, history and culture here that you'll be tempted to polish off the feast in great gulps. Don't! As is true with remarkable dishes, superb wines and excellent storytelling, you'll reap the greatest pleasure if you follow the authors' lead and savor this book in bite-sized morsels, the better to enjoy every bit."
--Dorie Greenspan, "On Dessert" columnist for The New York Times Magazine, New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of Around My French Table and Dorie's Cookies

"From the delights of French chocolate (through Portuguese Jews of Bayonne) to France's passion for plums (brought home by the Templars from Damascus), A Bite-Sized History of France offers satisfaction for all: tastes of history from the people who gave perhaps the world's greatest cuisine to the whole world. Why travel with a guide book on dry history, architecture, or politics when you can sink your teeth into such a delicious feast?"
--Juliette Rossant, author of Super Chef

"Who would have guessed forks had so much to do with bayonets? From the introduction of wine to Gaul by the Romans to Napoleon's pancake predictions before entering Russia, the strange dialectics of war and peas offer a fascinating means of exploring the origins of French culinary traditions. Funny and historically accurate, this delicious book will make you want to raid the fridge."
--Jean Lopez, founder and editor-in-chief, Guerres & Histoire

"Have the French ever done anything that wasn't motivated, one way or another, by their search for good food? It seems not, and I can't imagine a more fascinating or titillating angle to explore the history of France than this wonderful book."
--Clotilde Dusoulier, author of Tasting Paris: 100 Recipes to Eat like a Local