Michel Roux Jr pushes French fine dining aside in favour of rustic, family-style French home cooking
French cuisine has a reputation for being rich, complex and time-consuming, which it can be, particularly in restaurants. But French home cooking is based on good, local, seasonal ingredients and simple skills. This is the food I was brought up on and that I still like to eat – the food we enjoy cooking as a family. It’s fresh and delicious, with vegetables, pulses and fruit playing a large part.
In France, as in Britain, people are keen to have a healthier diet and I believe we can achieve this without compromising on taste or pleasure. I’ve created some brand new recipes to suit the way we like to eat today, as well as taking a fresh look at some much-loved traditional dishes to bring them up to date. These days, most of us don’t have hours to spend cooking – and then washing every pot and pan in the place – so I’ve included plenty of recipes that take very little time but are still full of flavour.
The food here is very achievable. You don’t need lots of fancy equipment and nearly all of the ingredients are easy to come by. Wherever possible I have reduced the richness and used less cream and butter than in the old days, while maintaining flavour. But these are not diet recipes and there are some classics that just can’t be improved on. I believe it’s fine to have a more indulgent treat once in a while. One of the best things about cooking great food is sharing it with other people. I hope you will enjoy making these dishes for your family and friends and showing them just how simple and delicious good French food can be.
The French Revolution by Michel Roux Jr, Seven Dials, £25.