It is hard to find meatless dishes in France.
While I consider myself an omnivore, I eat a mostly plant-based diet by preference, and although I indulge in the local meat while in France I often yearn for more vegetables.
Most vegetables are served as sides in France, and can often be found with heavy cream or cheese. Sometimes I luck out with a good ratatouille, taboule, or a fresh market salad.
Even the salads in France mostly have meat or cheese. The gamut runs something like this on most menus:
Salade gourmande: Salad with foie gras and duck gizzards
Salade au chevre chaud: Salad with goat cheese baked onto a slice of bread
Salade frisée aux lardons et œufs pochés: Salad with bacon and poached egg
Salade aux saumon: Samon salad, usually with other seafood thrown in
Salade nicoise: Tuna salad with hard boiled egg and anchovies
For the most part I stick with the salad nicoise as I love tuna and it doesn’t have any dairy in it (although recently my stomach seems to be tolerating French dairy without gluten).
But occasionally, they’ll be a fresh market salad of some sort that’s all vegetable based. The French do salads extremely well, so this usually includes a bounty of lettuce, beets, carrots, green beans, olives and sometimes beans.
Today for lunch, I decided to make my own version for my parents and I using lettuce, herbs and tomatoes from the garden with a few extras we had on hand. Bonne appetit!
- Green beans (fresh or canned)
- Baby tomatoes
- Beets (steamed or roasted)
- Fresh basil
- Fresh mint
- 3 tbsp apple cider vinaiger, 3 tbsp olive oil, drizzle of balsamic, 1 tsp dijon