Susan Hermann Loomis
Susan is an internationally-recognized expert on food and an award-winning journalist/author.
Susan is an internationally-recognized expert on food and an award-winning journalist/author. She takes a unique approach to her craft by combining training in journalism with a love for food and the people who produce it. She has published more than 10 books about food, the latest being "French Grill," and worked with the legendary Patricia Wells. She produces her famous blog “On rue Tatin” and teaches popular workshops. Susan accompanies you to discover the wonders of the “Paris Markets.”
You are an award-winning author with 10 culinary books and you run a successful blog. What are your thoughts on the French love affair with food and why do you feel it is so central to French culture.
The French have a rich culinary tradition that spans centuries. Despite vivid changes in France, the culinary tradition still holds strong in most sectors of French society. The French have strong links with their regions of origin, and memories of family meals where dishes were made with care, from ingredients either grown or sourced locally. These memories persist, to give the French a sense of place along with palates that appreciate good food. In France, the appreciation of good ingredients that are transformed into gorgeous meals begins in childhood, around the family table. This leads the French to respect taking time to cook and eat because to the French, a meal is not something you do quickly on your way to do something else, it is the destination.
On the journey you lead, Paris Markets, you take visitors through some of Paris’s famous open air markets and introduce them to foods and ingredients they may have never seen before. Why do you think it is so important to continuously evolve our tastes and to search for new flavors and ingredients?
I take guests behind the scenes of French culinary culture so that they can see the quality of the ingredients available and experience how close the French are to the land, even while living in the heart of Paris. As we tour a market, guests can see a map of the seasons, and they can watch how knowledgeable both the client and vendor are, how carefully ingredients are chosen, and how freely cooking advice is given. Going to a French market brings food, culinary culture, and cooking alive, and helps to explain just why French cuisine — as practiced and enjoyed by everyone — is both reassuring in its tradition and constantly evolving.