About Me/This Site

For this photo, I wanted to have a bottle of wine in my other hand,
but hard to do with a selfie stick in one, a quiche lorraine in the other.

Bonjour! Hello! Hola! Guten Tag! Ciao! Olà! Namaste! Salaam! Konnichi wa! Ahn-young-ha-se-yo! Szia! Nihau! Zdras-tvuy-te! Marhaba! Zdravo! Nazdar! Geia! Shalom! Hai! Es milu tevi! Wirajcie! Cao! Jambo! Hej! Sawatdee krap! Chao!

Hello! Hi! Hey, there!

Welcome to French Kitchen Fusion. I'm Samantha Vérant and I moved to France from California (via Chicago) in 2010 after marrying a French man. He's a rocket scientist. No, really! Which is pretty cool.

I'm a culinary alchemist. Sometimes I've really messed up with my "cooking experiments." Don't worry. I'm not going to share those bombs here– unless it's so bad it's hilarious. With that said, we're going to have fun. And we're going to eat well.

Passed down from one generation to the next, the love for cooking is in my blood. The love for wine and chocolate, too. But that's a given. At the age of nine, at first I experimented with simple dishes– meatloaf and salads being my specialty. By twelve, I was thumbing through Bon Appétit and Gourmet Magazine looking for inspiration, and my first ‘grand attempt’ came in the form of sundae pie decorated with chocolate leaves – molded from actual leaves I’d picked from the garden. (It weighed about 20 pounds- no calories there). From there, I moved on to more inspired experiments, either trying recipes on my own or helping my mom out in the kitchen. And then I moved to a small city in southwestern France.

My life changed. Big time. And so did my cooking and entertaining styles. I'm an at-home chef who jumped both feet into the fire while creating French meals for my French family. At first, I stuck to recipes, but then I got a little more daring incorporating ingredients I loved from other cultures. As an expat living in France, my friends also come from every corner of the world. And we cook for one another.

When it comes to cooking "American," it's all about fusion. French people ask me if cook American all the time. But, really, aside from those staple dishes like hamburgers (for a laugh, check out this "I would like to buy a hamburger video with Steve Martin), sloppy joes, or chicken pot pie, what exactly is American cooking? My answer is simple: America is melting pot comprised of many different cultures/cooking techniques/and ingredients. I found myself craving things I couldn't get here in southwestern France– like decadent sushi rolls, Avogolemono soup from Chicago's Greek town, Tortilla Soup from Frontera Grill, Lettuce Wraps from PF Changs...and so on. My list grew and grew.

So I did what I had to do to ease my foodie longings and curb the little sick pit of homesickness gnawing at my belly-- I made up the recipes I missed myself, using the ingredients I was able to find in France. And then I experimented more.

Voilà! French Kitchen Fusion was born.

Most of the recipes here list alternative ingredients. Just like in France, some of the things I list aren't readily found in other parts of the world. But where there is a will there is a way! You don't have to sacrifice taste just because you can't find chipotle peppers. You use what you've got! You get creative!

For vegetarians and pescetarians, I also provide alternatives for most of the dishes. I'm even experimenting with veggie or seafood bourguignons. I'll get back to you on that. Like me and my French language skills, it's a work in progress.

Please remember, recipes are only guidelines! Season them to your taste. Omit ingredients you don't like. Add in something you think will rock your socks off! (I'm partial to ginger. LOVE IT!)

Most of all, have fun! Put some music on! Pour a glass of wine! Grab a wooden and get cooking!

Bon Appétit, Baby!

Viva la cuisine!


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