Staying in an apartment in Paris has given us a chance to take advantage of some of the local markets, and the whole food thing here is very different thing than in the United States.
Yesterday, one set up literally at our front door. The produce and meat sold there was locally grown and organic.
The chickens still had their heads, and I'm not certain they had been cleaned. They clearly had been scratching around the barnyard they day before.
At one stall, they had just finished roasting some of these beautiful birds, and last night, we had a couple for dinner last night. They had skinny legs with meat that melted in my mouth. The breast meat was the same way. Compared to Perdue, these birds were pretty flat chested, but oh my! Were they tasty! I mean, this was a whole different bird.
There are little markets like this all over town - and you can smell their strawberries from down the street. There is a conspicuous absence of large chain super markets. So the food has not been sitting around central distribution for a bunch of days before it hits the counter.
Produce sold in the states is often picked before it is mature. It is then put into a truck or train with ethylene gas that turns tomatoes red and makes stuff look great, but because the produce didn't get a chance to mature, it doesn't taste great.
France, on the other hand, breeds it's produce for taste and good nutrition. And the taste difference is phenomenal.
One thing that someone told me is that the French have banned imports from the US for any kind of meat or produce because of our processing methods. Hmmm.
One way you can distinguish between a French man or woman and an American tourist is that French women are thin. Most of the Americans here are carrying around a few extra pounds.
Of course, the French smoke like chimneys, and I guess I'm not willing to try the Liggett and Myers diet to get thin!