Monday, May 18, 2015

French cuisine reminiscent of Ratatouille

I know you might be thinking has this sister lost it? Not only thinking of an animation film of a rat that can cook, but having the audacity of writing it in a class blog. Well, I will risk it just this once.

This movie is set in France where there are restaurants and food critiques whose opinion matter to every self respecting chef. During all our class discussions of France, images from the fictitious characters in Ratatouille played in my mind.

So on the 27th of  April, our lecturer Dr. Wandia invited us to her house in Athi River to Sample the French cuisine. This was a joint class with the Love, Sex and Poetry class in Athi River. I am the only one from FRE 124 class who managed attend.For that reason, most of the class content skewed to poetry and Sauti Sol's Nerea song.

The good thing was I got to sample a four course francophone meal. Before I divulge the details of my taste bud adventures, would someone please explain the difference between cheddar, brie and Camembert cheese? I had clear instructions to bring either Brie or Camembert cheese, pate or baguettes. These were no where to be found in supermarkets in town. All the bakeries in town didn't know what baguettes were. I bought cheddar cheese which I later learnt was American.

The apéritifs were mini cheese sandwiches served with soft drinks instead of wine. Then for the main course, we had Boeuf Bourgignon- beef stew in red wine. We also had the choice of a stew that had beef, beans and sausages. These were served with potatoes and salads.
Image courtesy of

We had crepes served with whipped cream for desert. Then to crown it all, Brie cheese served with bread. All through the meal, Dr. Wandia was introducing and explaining the meals. They were so busy in the kitchen. We almost felt a tinge of guilt for just siting and feeding while they were busy working in the kitchen. That made us realize that French meals need a waiter. 

(The highlight of the day was that Chris Lymo- her fiancee, was helping in the kitchen). Chris joked that we were a vetting committee coming to vet whether he was right for her.

The French lifestyle of spending up to two hours during their lunch break became evident to us. That brings me back to Ratatouille where the chef stared through the kitchen door to see the look of approval on the food critique's face. Only that this time, we were not critiques, but rather experimenters who were learning as we ate.

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