Picard


The French are known for their elaborate cuisine, but there is a secret hidden in many French freezers and its name is Picard. When I first moved to France I could not figure out what went on in the Picard shops — they are huge expanses, kept all white, with freezer upon freezer standing beside each other… and, as I found out, full of frozen food. Even then I wasn’t convinced — years of terrible frozen pizzas and microwave dinners had turned me off frozen food. Turns out the French are addicted to their local Picard, and with reason — Picard food is (mostly) fantastic.

Now, I am still not convinced by the idea of frozen sushi, but a lot of their other products are great. There is a pureed vegetable range, frozen into perfectly sized tablets to defrost that the whole French population must be weaned on (these saved my life). The frozen fruit are great to have in the winter. And because we are, after all, still in France, you can stock up on foie gras, snails and mashed potatoes infused with truffle oil.

So next time you are anywhere in France do leave your prejudices behind and check out Picard, as I cannot think of a single French person who does not rave about it.

– Emilie

6 COMMENTS - Add your own

1. peggy | August 19, 2010 | Reply

haha, same experience… when living in Paris it took me a couple of months to step into Picard…I just always thought it cannot be interesting because it looks so boring from the outside…
once inside i came home with 2 shoppingbags :)

2. Carine | August 19, 2010 | Reply

Same here. I used to be dubious about going into Picard but now I cannot live without it. I love all the frozen veggies and fruits, and the ready-made meals for one are great to take to work!

3. Justine | August 19, 2010 | Reply

The secret behind French mums’ cooking: That is so true!!!

4. Freida | August 19, 2010 | Reply

omg, i just had a late “picard” dinner this evening, this is also a fervent believer and follower of cooking all fresh veggies and fruits according to the season and that loves organic produce to cook for the family!

5. emilie | August 30, 2010 | Reply

It is so funny, as everyone does not dare enter at first and leaves Picard as an addict!

6. JEANE | September 8, 2010 | Reply

LOVE your blog, Emilie! I’m kicking myself in advance for sharing this secret with you all, but the absolute BEST Picard product for a cheat’s dinner is the Cuisses de Canard. Whack these babies in the oven, frozen, before you go out to buy your evening baguette or tomorrow’s croissants, they can cook from frozen at medium heat for 45 minutes to an hour – any self-respecting cheat can tart them up further to taste with the addition of peach slices, apricot halves, garlic, figs, etc, etc. They come out of the oven looking restaurant-quality perfect. Personally, I adore them slightly overcooked, not to say burnt, but that’s probably because I’m Irish & used to overcooked food. BTW, this is obviously a well-known French secret, because they frequently are sold out. Brilliant freezer stop-gap when unexpected guests pop by.
Bon appetit!

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