I’ve never been to France, and I’m a little embarrassed to say it. I’ve heard people wax dreamily about it ad infinitum, almost as if there are two groups of people in the world: ones who have felt the true experience of France or Paris, and those who haven’t. The truth is, if I’d had the opportunity to visit, I would have long ago. Being well-traveled is a colossal privilege, and one I haven’t yet had the opportunity to fully experience. I’ve had some amazing trips in my lifetime: Vancouver was one of my favorite places I’ve ever been, and as a stop on a cruise I was able to be in the Bahamas, albeit only for about two hours. But aside from that, when I traveled throughout my life it has always been to various places in the U.S. where my family members lived: New Jersey, Michigan, and then Arizona after I’d moved to the east coast. All of the travel dollars and frequent flyer miles went toward seeing family instead of embarking upon world adventures, and I absolutely don’t regret that at all.
That all being said, of course pretty much all of Europe is at the top of my “I want to go there” list. As for now, I feel like I have gotten a slice of what France must be like from food, and food writing. I loved David Lebovitz’ The Sweet Life in Paris. I’ve even read a book about how French people parent differently, despite not yet having kids or any plans to anytime soon. And of course Molly of Orangette is a great resource for stories and foods of France, and I’m so glad she shared this warm lentil salad that she says is very common in France, in an even simpler form.