June 15, 2011

My Favorite Books about France and a Giveaway

Marseille - le Panier

Being a life long Francophile, avid reader and cookbook addict lover means that my bookshelves are literally overflowing with books about France.

Books about French regions and travel, French cookbooks, French phrase books (which now pretty much just gather dust), Paris food guides, memoirs written by people living in France, French restaurant guides, French maps...
You get the idea.

Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert

I have many, many favorites. If I had to narrow them down to just a few, these are the 10 that would be on my French themed Desert Island Books list.



Culinaria France [Paperback]

Culinaria France Because it is a well photographed, comprehensive guide to the gastronomy of France. And every time I crack it open, I want to jump in my car and go explore a new region.


A Goose in Toulouse: and Other Culinary Adventures in France

A Goose in Toulouse by Mort Rosenblum. Because it is all about delicious French food and I couldn't put it down.


French Farmhouse Cookbook

French Farmhouse Cookbook by Susan Herrmann Loomis. Because it was my "go to" cookbook when we first moved to France. I still use it all the time and and I could eat her recipe for Pizza Tart every day.


My Life in France

My Life in France by Julia Child and Alex Prud'Homme. Because it's Julia!


Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France

Quiches, Kugels and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France by Joan Nathan. Because it is written with such passion and I loved reading the stories behind the recipes.


French Cheese (Eyewitness Companions)

French Cheese (Eyewitness Companions) Do I really need to say why?


The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious Adventures in the World's Most Glorious - and Perplexing - City

The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious Adventures in the World's Most Glorious - and Perplexing - City by David Lebovitz. Because I could relate to so many of his stories about living in France and it made me laugh out loud.


Backroad Bistros, Farmhouse Fare

Backroad Bistros, Farmhouse Fare by Jane Sigal. Because it was one of the first French cookbooks I ever bought and because her Vin d'Oranges recipe continues to be a wintertime favorite.


A Culinary Journey in Gascony: Recipes and Stories from My French Canal Boat

A Culinary Journey in Gascony: Recipes and Stories from My French Canal Boat by Kate Hill. Because Kate's love for Gascony and passion for food are inspiring!

Paris, Paris: Journey into the City of Light

Paris, paris:  Journey into the City of Light by David Downie. Because it shared an entirely new Paris with me, making me love this amazing city even more.


Now about that giveaway. I had so much fun with the last one, I couldn't resist having another!

Recently a friend dropped off a bag of cookbooks at our house after a spring cleaning frenzy. Inside was a collection of regional French cookbooks that I couldn't believe she was giving away, yet was very happy to take off her hands, including a copy of another book that made it on to my list, At Home in Provence by Patricia Wells. (yes, I'm cheating...technically this is book #11...)

PATRICIA WELLS AT HOME IN PROVENCE: Recipes Inspired By Her Farmhouse In France

Now, while I would love to replace my battered, 15 year old copy, I would rather give the brand spanking new book to one of you.

It is the UK version, so other than little things like calling zucchini, "courgettes," and sea bass, "bonito," the book is basically the same. Also, all the measurements are in both US and metric.

What you have to do:
Simply leave a comment, including your email so I can contact you if you win. Comments will be closed promptly at noon Paris time on June 22. The winner will be chosen by a random number generator, then announced here.


Bonne chance!


Update: Congratulations to Yael!




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84 comments:

Julie Mautner said...

Bonjour,
I loved your Top Ten List! And I'd love a copy of this book for my kitchen library!
Thanks!
Julie

spacedlaw said...

I can't believe the cheese does not come right at the top of the list!

Betty C. said...

I love this list! I don't have a lot of the books, though. The Julia Child one is on my bookshelf waiting to be read. Put me in the drawing! You have my email address :)

MilkJam said...

Great list! gives me ideas of some new books to pick up! :)
I'd love to be put into the drawing - fingers crossed! (otherwise how 'bout some cookies in exchange???)

Kirstie Garrett said...

Ooh la la. Ur blog has shamed me. I only have apero and health drink French books !!
With so many friends and family arriving imminently I wld love to wow them with some plats also so pls enter me in your comp!
Kirstiegarrett@hotmail.co.uk

bre said...

I'll be in Paris in 261 days - it would be awesome to win a cookbook to use while I'm living there for 3 months.

Elisa @ Globetrotting in Heels said...

ooooh, I am a cookbook addict -ehm- I mean, enthusiast myself - would LOVE to win this!! I don't think I have any French cooking books yet!

elisa.bieg@gmail.com

Chez Loulou said...

Leaving a comment for Tami Manchester from California. She can't sign in and comment for some reason!

If anyone else has problems, just send me an email or leave me a note on Facebook or Twitter and I'll comment for you.

Jacqui@FrenchVillageDiaries said...

What a lovely list, you've given me some more to search out, thanks. Would love to add this one to my kitchen collection.

meredith said...

I always love a new cookbook!

Veronica said...

Goodness, I thought I had a lot of France-related books, and I only have one of these -- A Goose in Toulouse, really interesting book. Some new ones to seek out here!

By the way, if you'd like to read another amazing book about Paris, I can recommend Parisians by Graham Robb, which I'm reading at the moment. A history book like no other. Clever (almost too clever sometimes) and fascinating!

bare-faced gardener said...

I can’t believe I only have one from this list. Will have to make some space for another :)
Getting inspired to do some more cooking !

Ann said...

I can't wait to check out some of your favorites -- there are so many new (to me) food books here!

Tanya said...

Mmmm, another French cookbook and I'd love another. Great post/list.

Sweet Caroline said...

My cookbook collection is sadly lacking. Tragedy !

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

A great collection of books, I only have one of the 10 listed so I have lots of collecting still to do it seems!! dpsfrance at gmail.com
Diane

helen tilston said...

Bonjour
I love your blog. This is a kind and generous offer and the book looks very interesting.
Helen

chcmichel said...

We should compare cookbook libraries; I have 9 of the 11 you mention but those wouldn't all be in my top ten list. However, your list of the type of books you like matches mine exactly. I have hundreds of cookbooks; I am probably an addict.

Mikki said...

This is a great list, I will definitely be checking some of these out very soon!
coeur.de.verre@hotmail.co.uk

Lost In Cheeseland said...

I was JUST looking at that book online recently! I would love to win a copy! Great list of books to have on hand for any Francophile.

Petite Fleur said...

Oooh, I hope I'll get lucky!! :) One of my favorites is Stephane Reynaud's 365 Good Reasons to Sit Down To Eat.

Thanks for this giveaway!

Frenchicandshabby said...

A very useful list. Now I know that I don't have enough French cookbooks. I shall investigate these further!

Shannon said...

I have a cookbook addiction and this is not helping!! :)

A Trifle Rushed said...

What a wonderful list, I think I'm going to copy you. I'll compile my own list when I get to Brittany in July, all my French Recipe books and novels are there. Thanks for an inspiring list and a super idea. Jude x

Kristiina said...

Bonjour,

I love books about Paris and especially about french food :)

LuxeBytes said...

Culinaria France is a beautiful book; I also like the others in the series, Germany, Italy, and Spain. And David Leibovitz is pretty much a god, is he not?

Please enter me in the draw. I would love to read this book.

Brandy Strom said...

I love your top ten list! Pretty similar to mine ;)

Please enter me in the giveaway contest :)

mllecognac@aol.com

Dvora said...

It's funny how no matter what type of book, if it's about France it tends to be about food. I thought about MFK Fisher's memoirs of living in France, but they are almost entirely about food. So I went up to my shelves to see what I had that didn't focus on food and came up with: My Father's Glory and My Mother's Castle by Marcel Pagnol, probably my #1 pick. And anything by Colette. I don't think food was high on her list! And finally, The Flaneur by Edmund White.
Please, count me in. dvoratreis@yahoo.com

francophilehic said...

I would love to win!

verlaine36@yahoo.com

Sarah said...

I would love to own some of these books! I can't wait to hear about the giveaway!

smjohns91@yahoo.com

Sandy said...

I know this post is about books but I really love the second picture of the alley and outdoor cafe. =)

Steve said...

If my partner has just one more cook book or book about France or house will sink in to oblivion.
OK just one more then.

Sinnfull said...

I would love to have a copy of this book for my kitchen. It would be one more thing to satisfy my desire to be in France!

Marcia said...

Bonjour! I just found your site yesterday, and what timing. I only have one of the books on your list, and the cookbook that you are giving away would be a terrific addition to my ever expanding collection! Thanks -I will be checking back in often.
Marcia

Sharon T said...

I love your list! Some of those I already own and some I'd like to acquire. The Patricia Wells book looks lovely. Thanks for the giveaway :)

Sharon T said...

Oops, forgot my email address: sharontalb@msn.com

Emm said...

That's a terrific list, especially Julia and "Paris, Paris." The picture of people at a cafe is beautifully evocative.
I'd love to add the Wells book to my overflowing cookbook shelves.

bookster2005 @yahoo

Michelle Linden said...

So many great books! I am reading Paris Paris right now!

Katie said...

I'd love a new cook book... but what I really love is your list. I have several but I see several more that I need to add to my Amazon list - thank God for Marketplace!

Anne said...

My cookbook shelf is overflowing but I don't care. Count me in.

Anonymous said...

Sounds great. :)

dannyjosephsen@gmail.com

Amy said...

I'm just starting to build my collection of cookbooks and I love your list!

Dedene said...

Lovely books. I'm going to try that pizza tarte.

Jean said...

I love your list of books and your reasons for loving them.
I have a lot of cookbooks including several about French cooking but the only one I have on your list is the one about French cheeses. Thanks for pointing the way to some more !!

I deleted my previous comment because I forgot to include my email address !
jeanlovesbeads@gmail.com

katastic said...

As a debutante in the kitchen, I'd love to receive a copy of this book! (Particularly if you speak so highly of it!) Merci bien

cabin.bat@gmail.com

Linds said...

Who says no to a cookbook giveaway? Hope I win ;)

Murissa Maurice said...

What a great idea! I will have to follow up some of your suggestions.

The Wanderfull Traveler
canadianculinarytravel.blogspot.com
canadianculinarytravel@gmail.com

ms.mildred said...

I am continuing my learning to cook journey...this would help!

knit gromit said...

Great list I will be getting thrones I am missing

garry M said...

- Its a Tuesday and you approach the market in Olonzac with apprehension - was this really random?
You have brought the old book not the new as per my instructions. It is signed not by the author but you.
You walk past the stalls to the Cafe De La Post you have to wait for a table but when one comes free you plant yourself on a chair ignoring the silver haired English couple in holiday stammering "that was our table!" You sit, placing the book on the table smiling to yourself at the Englishers comment "damn FROGS!"
You open the top button of your raincoat.....it seemed a good idea when you left the house, feeling and looking like a spy. However, now in the 40 degree heat you are feeling very warm. The thought of removing your coat is very strong but you resist the thought since you resisted the thought of putting on clothes this morning. A Rose will cool you down, you place your order. Your gaze returns to the table the book is gone and in it's place the real prize "Kraft Processed Cheese Slices" - individually wrapped.
You slip the "prize" from the table and into the raincoat pocket. You throw a few Euro onto the table you disappear into the tourist throng, it must be 11 am. You take a photograph of olives, their colors black, green and red. Later, you will post it on your blog as you nibble a cheese slice. Meanwhile in a kitchen in Canada a pair of brown eyes read an inscription written in mauve crayon....."Can you send a can of cheese string?"

Christopher Hardy said...

Nice list, Loulou, and many thanks for your delightful blog! My new e-mail for French Connections is stocius@gmail.com, but keep the book, my shelves are groaning...

suzielarose said...

Great giveaway... I have a ton of cookbooks but not this one??? mmm will have to fix this! ;)
I am at guibord_leblanc{at}hotmail((dot))com

yael said...

What a lovely list of books. I'd love to win the Patricia Wells book though :) Have a great week.

Julie said...

When I was an assistante d'anglais in the Loire Valley in the 80s, I really 'discovered' french cooking, mainly through the amazing family Sunday lunches cooked by my friend Carole's Mum. In order to try and replicate some of her great dishes I bought 'La Bonne Cuisine Francaise' by Marie-Claude Bisson. It's not a coffee-table cookbook by any means, but a real guide to the basics of family french cooking.

Now I love all french cookbooks so would love to be in your draw: julietadair@yahoo.com

Bonne dimanche!

Anna-Sylwia said...

Ohhh, I would love to win this book :))

aniasylwia.mackowiak@gmail.com

Abs said...

I would LOVE to win!
Abby.hacker@gmail.com

J.N. Urbanski said...

I'm in too!

Randomly Jann said...

Oh, I would *love* to win this book and start my own collection of all things French!

Lisa P said...

Love your blog! I have 3 of your 10 books, looking forward to getting the rest of them.

Mel said...

I just returned from a two week vacation in France. I am totally in love with the country!! Love the top ten list and can't wait to get to the library!
melanieinok@gmail.com

Sue said...

Love your list! I have been wanting this cookbook for a while now. Can't have too many cookbooks!

Julia said...

i absolutely love patricia wells so this content is exciting!

Anne and Kirk said...

Oh would I LOVE to add this to my cookbook shelf! amwoodyard@yahoo.com

Janet said...

Love your blog and love your top 10 should we say top 11 list.
janet.mcandrew@lakeshore.on.ca

croquecamille said...

Julia's book is definitely one of my favorites, too. And I look forward to the day I have a minute (and a copy) to read Paris, Paris.

Debra said...

Bonjour!
Thank you for the Top Ten list, I am going to try each one at a time!
I have borrowed Mdm. Wells books from the library and would love to have one to call my own.
Thank you,
Debra P.

alannah_climbing said...

I just discovered your blog, and love it as I have a (not so secret!) obsession with France and everything French (especially the food). And I have to say, I think i'm going to have to go get myself one - or some - of those books you recommended :)

alannah_climbing@hotmail.com

pamplemousse said...

It's been on my "must read" list for a while! I would love to own a copy!

sarahpastrana@gmail.com

Lauren Hunter said...

I have collected French cookbooks for a long time... one of my personal favorites is called, "When French Women Cook" - It's a terrific story combined with great recipes from different regions in France!

Thanks,

Lauren
laurenlovesfrance@gmail.com

LaLa said...

Yes please! What a delicious list of books, fingers crossed!

lala@schmeckt.com.au

squirrelbread said...

I'm surprised you were able to whittle down the list to ten. In my mind, most everything about France is terrific!

Cheers,

*Heather*

bluesberry said...

I was looking for good reccomendations on French cookbooks, I have the William Sonoma book (not listed here, but very good), Julia Child's "My life in France" as well as "Mastering..." Also have "French women don't get fat" with good tips on French eating and lastly "Lunch in Paris", which I enjoyed for the recipes, but it's not that great a story.

Valya said...

Ah, you're making me ever so nostalgic for France! I'd love a copy.

xxo
Valya

valya@vdlupescu.com

Anna said...

I have book #1 but can't wait to read more French cookbooks :)
email: driedtoaster@gmail.com

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

J'adore Patricia Wells. Count me in. My email is on my profile page which links to my name above this comment.

Good luck everyone.
Sam

Sareberry said...

Great list, Now I'm hungry.

CJ said...

So much fun, looking through the list. I'm excited to go explore these more. Thanks for the fun giveaway. christijarland@gmail.com.
P.S. Anna, your email address made me giggle. People tease me I don't make toast but dried out bread.

Jules8 said...

Count me in! What a wonderful giveaway. Thanks so much!

Marnely Rodriguez said...

awesome giveaway, I'd love it!

Natalie said...

This is great! I need a break from Italian food.

blondienati(at)yahoo(dot)com

Martin P WIlson said...

I share your passion and love your choice of books. I have recently been working my way through Julia Child's "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" and Elizabeth David's writing on French regional food.

It is why I created The Winding Way. To give me the chance to follow in those footsteps, and beyond, and hopefully tog et paid for doing so!

Best Wishes
martin@thewindingway.com

Net said...

What is one more French Cookbook, I can't seem to get enough, either.

kahalehangela said...

Would love a French book. Really enjoy your website and pictures.
Angela

Anonymous said...

You have a very nice and informative web site. I'm thinking about retiring to Paris but I can't speak a word of French- is there any hope for me? And is it possible to find an apartment that doesn't cost E4000,000?