It's here! The first full history of Parisian food!
The first comprehensive history of the food of Paris includes a look at Paris' first inhabitants, its markets, dining out before and since the restaurant, immigrant food, common drinks, Parisian cookbooks and some of the city's most popular dishes.
These are only some of the questions addressed by the new book A History of the Food of Paris: From Roast Mammoth to Steak Frites. Paris has played a unique role in world gastronomy, influencing cooks and gourmets across the world. Yet the history of its food remains largely unknown. A History of the Food of Paris is the first work to explore this history from prehistoric times on, offering a comprehensive view of the food of one of the world's great cultural centers.
This food reflects the city's own rich history, its centuries of influences, the groups which have ruled France and the colonies it has ruled in turn, the meeting of aristocratic and street food, the shifts in political structures and labor patterns, the early influence of Americanization, a recurring concern for healthy eating (however each generation has defined that), and a wealth of other factors.
Food historian Jim Chevallier methodically reveals the details of this dazzling panorama, beginning with a look at the city's site and resources, exploring the diets of the first inhabitants (from the Neanderthals to the Franks), tracing the colorful history of the city's markets, guiding the reader through the early eateries which culminated in the restaurant, leading in turn to a host of brasseries, bistros, creameries, bouillons, workers' canteens and other options, then turning to the unique history of immigration in France and how it has changed the city's food, before presenting an inventory of Paris' many drinks, trying to define what makes a cookbook Parisian and sampling some of the city's favorite dishes.
All this is drawn from a variety of sources, including histories, memoirs, archives, literature, guidebooks, reference works, archaeology, studies, statutes, newspapers, and cookbooks. Lovers of Paris, of food history, of cuisine will welcome this wide-ranging look at an endlessly fascinating subject.
A History of the Food of Paris is available at Rowman and Littlefield's site (rowman.com)