Friday, November 16, 2007

Shopping List for France

Let's go Virtual Shopping in France! Here are some grocery items I just gotta have when I go shopping there (faire des courses). In no particular order, here they are:

Bonne Maman Tartelettes

These cookies are so addicting, with a buttery crust and fruit filling. My favorites are framboise, fraise and citron. I seriously have eaten a whole box in one sitting.

Sel de Guérande

Or any flaky salt is a must in my cupboard.

Volvic Water

I love the lemon flavored water (no sugar or sweeteners added) and Peach and Strawberry are my other faves.

Pass the Old El Paso!

Ok, ok, I only bought this when we lived in France and we were dying, I repeat DYING to have some Mexican food.


from the olive stands inside the markets. They have olives in big tubs, each tub a different flavor. You taste them all, and then chose a couple of your favorites. They are so delicious and very important for your aperitif.

Ourson or many other kiddie treats.

France's selection of cookies is mind boggling. This is one treat my kids and I like, it's like a Twinkie with chocolate filling, but not near as sweet or artificial tasting, and way cuter!


Delicious dried sausage that is an essential with kids! Similar to hard salami. Can come in a strange variety of flavors.

Tuna-I really liked this brand, it was a solid white piece of fish, no mush.


Chocolatines (pain au chocolat) from a shop, not pre-packaged.

Banania or Poulain (hot chocolate for breakfast)

French chocolate bars Milka is one of my faves, though there are many others!

Pago Juice

This is the best juice I've ever had! Strawberry is my all-time favorite. It's like blended up berries in a glass. This is from Italy but served frequently in cafes in France.

Sirop ...for refreshing drinks (Sirop de fraise drink in a cafe is water and strawberry syrup. Other popular flavors are mint, peach and grenadine. You can also add these to beer to make a Monaco or Peach Beer.)

Jambon and jambon du pays

Ham. I don't know what the heck they do to their ham in France, but it is sooooo good! Jambon de pays is dried, similar to proscuitto.

Bonne Maman jam

Carte d'Or ice cream!!!

These peanut flavored puffs for aperitif

Jenlain beer, because most beer in France is crap. (What can I say? We live in micro-brew territory.)

Nutella, of course! And it really does taste better when you buy it in Europe!

Maille mustard-I prefer the grainy one, especially for vinaigrette.

Merguez sausages, they are so yummy and spicy, especially grilled!



Betty C. said...

I could comment on about every item, but will try to keep my comments reasonably short!

The other day my butcher made his own "merguez." It was absolutely fabulous.

The teddy bear cakes remind me of when my girls were little and I would slip them in their school bag for their goûter. I haven't thought about them for a long time...

Pago is a great juice brand, I agree.

We do go in for the Old El Paso kits from time to time too...

I'm not that crazy about all Bonne Maman jams, nor all Carte d'Or ice creams, though. It really depends on the flavor, IMO.

Fun post!

La Belette Rouge said...

As I have never had it, I was really envying that I cannot get Carte d'Or ice cream in my grocers freezer section. Did not envy that in France El Paso kits has to substitute for real Mexican food.
Thank you so much, CC, for this post. I know I am a pushy Belette...and, speaking of which, where is that red coat? I am thrilled to have this list and save it to my "Shop in France list."

Cris in Oregon said...

Interesting how food differs in other country's. Interesting post. Especially the ice cream. ;)

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Salut Betty,
When we go back, I will be sure to get the merguez at the butcher. Generally, do all butchers make their own?
About the Pago, I can never, ever find the strawberry or banana or anything other than OJ in the stores. The other flavors we only could get when we were out at a cafe (or in Italy). Do you know what store to get the good flavors at?
I'm not crazy about all Bonne Maman jams either. I usually stick with fraise, framboise. I think they are getting great with all their cookies! What I wouldn't do for a box of tartelettes right now to have with my coffee!

Cassoulet Cafe said...

LBR-Carte D'Or ice cream is so good! I made my own "Chunky Monkey" often. I got the chocolat noir flavor and then the banane....omg it was to die for!!!!!!

Cassoulet Cafe said...

PS. Did you know that Bonne Maman jam is almost $6 here, at Safeway and Fred Meyer???? OUCH. I only buy it when it goes on sale. Isn't it about 2 euros there?

Cassoulet Cafe said...

My list didn't come out as interesting as I had intended. This was the hardest post to do because each time I got the photo and description lined up, it made these big gaps again and I worked on it for two solid days. I had way more items to list, but I finally gave up and pushed PUBLISH THIS DANG POST ALREADY! I mean, the Publish button.
But yes, the ice cream is GREAT!

Betty C. said...

I don't pay that much attention, but I think it's around two euros --maybe a little more depending on the fruit. I'll check next time I go to the (dreaded) hypermarket...

WendyB said...

This makes me hungry...I want those tartlette cookies.

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Those things are so scrumptious and addicting! My friend just called to say she's coming to visit from France and I am going to load up on those!

Betty C. said...

For merguez, I would say all butchers don't necessarily make their own these days. But merguez from a butcher's should be better than merguez from a supermarket in any case.

We can find a fair assortment of Pago juices in big bottles at our larger supermarket here, Géant. But it's true that cafés tend to have more variety.

Cécy said...

You obviously are in the South of France or else you wouldn't have said Chocolatines (well plus the Cassoulet title).
And I have to agree with the Nutella, it is so disappointing for me here and I'm a huge addict.

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Yes, we were in Toulouse :) (We don't live there any more). I definitely learned French the "southern" way.
I don't know what they do different to the Nutella here, but they also change the Orangina in the USA. Have you noticed? It's much sweeter than in France. But that's ok for me, because I didn't like Orangina because it was so bitter.
Thanks for stopping by!

Cécy said...

I was born in Toulouse, studied there for 2 years, worked there too. I have my grandmother there as well, it's a city I love very much.
As far as Nutella, I think part of it is because it's stored in plastic instead of glass (kind of like what you hear about coca being better in a glass bottle).
I never tried the Orangina in the US. I probably wouldn't like it...

Cassoulet Cafe said...

No you probably would not like the Orangina here, though you should try it if you ever find it. Just to taste! I saw people in Toulouse putting grenadine or sirop de fraise in their orangina (beurk!)maybe to make it sweeter?
That is neat that you were born in Toulouse! I have lots of friends and family there. I love it! Do you speak French with a Toulouse accent? ;)
I can't wait to go back for vacation! Hopefully soon!

Deb said...

Ya got a pretty good list there. Though I can do without the merguez!

Ben said...

Does anyone know where I can buy those Bonne Maman Tartelettes? We just got back from Paris and we picked up a box of these on our last trip to the supermarket over there. Bought it with out really tasting it and tried it when we got back to the U.S. Now...I'm wishing we bought more boxes!

Cassoulet Cafe said...

Unfortunately I have not been able to find them here in the USA. That's why when my friends or family from France come, they have to bring me loads of these! They are soooooo good!
Maybe I could sell them to Americans during the month I'm in France?! lol!