Peculiar Picard

France is a veritable treasure trove of gastronomic greatness.  From classic dishes such as Blanquette de Veau and Bouillabaisse, to famous chefs like Escoffier and Paul Bocuse, and bien sûr, the infamous baguette, France gave the world cuisine á la française.  You can imagine my surprise when I stumbled across this store…

Oh No They Did Not

Any ideas what this is hidden within the walls of this store?  Probably not.  One more hint.

Anyone? Bueller?

That is officially the largest snowflake you have ever seen.  Period.  Maybe you think they sell snow in this store?  Snow cones?  Snowmen?  Snowwomyn (for you Elise)?  Close, but no cigar.  They DO sell, however, deep-frozen food according to the business name–Picard Les Surgelés literally translates to “deep-frozen inhabitant of the Picardie”.  Yikes.

As I walked into the store, I was shocked, bemused, appalled, and slightly turned on all at the same time.  This is the country that revolutionized the way we think about food.  Yet I am standing in a large freezer where there is enough chilled goods to satiate your frozen food fantasies for a lifetime.  Something didn’t quite add up.

I soon realized that Deep-Frozen Inhabitant of the Picardie is not just any old freezer store.  This is a French freezer store.  There are not just frozen peas and carrots to be had mind you.  Forget Julia Child and cooking, you can literally have every single classically prepared French dish ever imagined and never leave the comfort of your couch/microwave/TV dinner induced coma.  You can have Chinese one night.  Indian the next.  Frozen macarons on the weekends!

I couldn’t muster the courage to buy anything, but this store is a perfect starting point for a conversation about our modern food system and how we can get back to eating real food!  P.S. The amount of plastic packaging in this store makes environmentalists everywhere weep unicorn tears.  Here are a bunch of photos that will sum up what words cannot.

Little Boxes Made of Ticky Tacky--Noticeably Empty

Not just ANY frozen food--Tomato, Mozzarella, Basil Millefeuille

Salmon in Papillotes--Steamed Salmon with Spinach and Tomatoes

Frozen Sushi anyone?

Indian Night!

I can't imagine how those taste...nothing beats the real thing

Sorry for the brief hiatus!  I have been really busy preparing lesson plans.  I have spent most of my time prepping games of Taboo, Jeopardy, I Spy, and internet slang for my uninterested students.  LOL.  FSATBOME.  French Students Are The Bane Of My Existence.

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4 responses to “Peculiar Picard

  1. Sister Steph

    So, I actually had the privilege of a French person serving me food from Picard. Yes, serving frozen food. At a meal. Easter meal, in fact. My crazy landlady Madame Moreau’s favorite store in all of France was Picard–she extolled its virtues endlessly, and, I believe, often served her family frozen, packaged, “goodness”. (Oh l’horreur) I will say that while it tastes much better than frozen food in the US, that this is not exactly a difficult feat to achieve and therefore we shall continue to categorize it in the decidedly-frozen-why-does-anyone-buy-this-think-of-the-energy-waste-humans-are-stupid category.

  2. I had a microwaved Frozen Pizza last night from California Kitchen. I bet you Picard’s tasted lots better

    • There is something to be said about convenience, but the taste of frozen is never as good as the real thing. Don’t worry though, I will make you plenty of fresh caramelized onion, fig, and gorgonzola pizzas this summer in the pizza oven!

  3. I am in total agreement with you Sister Steph. Although the food looked slightly tempting, there was just such a sterile feeling inside of Picard. That, and the creepy Frenchman staring at me while I took pictures inside his store…

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