Tucked away on rue du Général Camou near the Eiffel Tower, lies the American library unknown to most tourists, but deeply embedded in the hearts of expats from dozens of countries, not just the United States, who sometimes need to read and think in English. A quarter of its 2,500 members are French, in fact, drawn to the library’s Anglophone-friendly 120,000-book collection.
Compared with other Parisian' libraries, it is a quiet, uncrowded oasis offering two to three special events every week, including children’s programs, book groups and author lectures. Rarely do I venture down to this historical site but last week their guest lecturer was bound to provide a refreshing view on demystifying the art of French cooking. How could I resist a free evening of discussion around Paris and food!?
Not only is the author of "Tasting Paris" a French food writer she is the mind behind the award-winning Chocolate & Zucchini blog. In 2010 this was the first French foodie blog I subscribed to when news hit that we were about to move to Paris! I love Clotilde Dusoulier's approach to food as it is all about fresh, simple, seasonal foods from her picturesque Paris kitchen.
With a visiting girlfriend from Switzerland in tow we sat down in the newly renovated lecture hall of the American library and let ourselves be mesmerised by one of Paris' most famous foodie bloggers presenting her latest cookbook "Tasting Paris: 100 Recipes to Eat Like a Local", and sharing her perspective on Parisian cuisine, food writing, and French food culture.
Featuring classic recipes like Roast Chicken with Herbed Butter and Croutons, and Profiteroles, as well as newer dishes that reflect the way Parisians eat today, such as Ratatouille Pita Sandwich with Chopped Eggs and Tahini Sauce and Spiralized Zucchini Salad with Peach and Green Almonds the author made it sound like child's play to bring the flavours and allure of this favorite culinary destination to everyone's very own kitchen.
Now, all I need to do is start cooking... my family will be delighted!