French eating habits

(VOVWORLD) - For millions of people around the globe, there’s nothing better than French cuisine. In France, eating is seen as a pleasure rather than simply fueling the body to get through the day. Let’s talk to JulienTrambouze, a French journalist and traveler who is visiting Vietnam, to find out more about French food and French eating habits.   
French eating habits - ảnh 1

Hello, Julien! Welcome to VOV24/7’s Culture Rendezvous! Can you tell us briefly about yourself?

I’m Julien Trambouze. I’m a journalist in France. I’m visiting Vietnam for 6 months. I enjoy my trip in Vietnam a lot. I’ve stayed in Ho Chi Minh City and Hoi An, and I’ll stay in Hanoi until the end of my trip. I’ve been in Vietnam for 2 months. I’m travelling here for a good reason: I love Vietnamese food, and I would like to introduce my country, France, and my passion for food. For my family, for my parents, and me, the food culture is very central in our daily life. We eat a lot, maybe a little bit too much, and a little bit too greasy, maybe. Our main conversation during dinner is about what we eat, what we’re gonna eat, what kind of food we like.

Have you found any differences between Vietnamese food and French food?

Yeah. You eat soup constantly here. I eat soup just during winter time in France and when I’m sick, maybe a week per year. But you’re eating soup once or two times a day in Vietnam. What is very different is how you take the food with chopsticks. I think this makes a main difference between my culture and your culture. Because when you use the chopsticks, you make a decision: “I want this and this”, but with the fork, we just take what is in front of us. I’m not used to chopsticks so I’m eating more slowly here and enjoying more food here. I’m more passionate with the food. I mean I can choose “Ok I just want this piece of carrot, for example, and then I’m gonna take this piece of chicken. In France we mix everything together.

What is your favorite food in Vietnam?

I like “cha ca” a lot because you can cook your own meal. You can make your own mixture of peanut, a little sauce, salty or spicy. Yesterday night, I went to a very good restaurant. It’s very small, you even don’t know if it’s a restaurant or not. It was perfect! A perfect combination of salty, sweet, and spicy! What I like here in Vietnam is people can eat ten times a day. You can just open your eyes and around you there are 6 or 7 restaurants wherever you are! You are in the middle of nowhere and “Ah! There are dish, dish, and dish!” It’s amazing!

What do you usually eat in France?

We eat a lot of vegetables and sausages. We are very French. We eat sausages, pate, and cheese, and drink wine. We eat a lot of salads. Every day is a salad day. A little green not to feel so guilty to eat greasy after that. My grandfather, a famous butcher, had a garden. I grew my own garden for 3 years. It’s very interesting to see our tomatoes, salads, and herbs. It was fully organic. I was proud of my herbs. I’m now travelling mostly to eat good food. I came to Vietnam for eating, basically. I’m very pleased because I’m eating very good food.

French eating habits - ảnh 2 French grilled chicken salad with berries and avocado (Photo:

In Vietnam we eat a lot of rice. Have you been eating rice during your time here?

Here I eat rice maybe every day. But in France, it will go like: “Why? What’s happening? Why rice?” In France, I usually have eggs and tomatoes. I like tomatoes in the morning, some ham, some sausages but not a lot, some cheese, and bread. I’ll eat a little bit of salad for lunch. I like meat for dinner and I’ll go for beef steak or pizza.

We consider dinner a time for family gathering. What about in France?

At Christmas and some anniversaries, my family used to have a super-long dinner. It starts around 11a.m and usually finishes at 10 p.m, basically 10 hours of eating. We start with a little drink. Then we have the starter, the second starter. Sometimes we have 3 starters. The starters are usually foie gras, then we have oysters, and salmon. Fois gras is the liver of the duck. We make it like a pate. Then we have the first meal. It can be chicken. Second meal can be fish. Sometimes we have another meal like eggs. Then we have a break. During the break we eat small things. We drink. And then we eat a cheese platter which is huge. And then we have dessert. We finish 4 or 5 hours after that. We just have a little nap for half an hour, and then we say: “Ok, hah, what’s to do? Let’s eat again!”, and we start from the beginning. It was like this for years in my family. One day somebody said “I think we eat too much!”, and everybody said: “Ok, yeah, I’m dying after that”. That was my childhood. I think it was so cute.

Thank you, Julien, for the talk!