Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Burger? No. Jambon-Beurre.

Call it yet another French exception culturelle.
France is the only country in the world where local sandwiches beat the globally ubiquitous American burgers, reports Le Point -- among many local media who went cocorico on the news. French gourmets keep complaining about the demise of traditional cuisine as malbouffe (junk food) creeps in, yet 8 sandwiches are sold for every burger which makes it to the cash till in France.

The star of French sandwiches is the jambon-beurre (ham & butter on a baguette) with 2.2 million units sold every day and 830 million sold every year, i.e. 72% of the sandwich market share.

, locally known as "parisiens" are so much part of the French culture, diet and economics that they have become the gallic equivalent to The Economist's Big Mac index: a study by local consultants Gira Comseil reveals that Paris is the most expensive city to live in France @ 3.27€ on average for a "parisien," while Corte in beautiful, hot-headed Corsica is the cheapest @ 1.91€.

is a personal favorite when heading back home -- best enjoyed on a zinc (bistro counter) with a glass of Gamay flavored by that unmistakable atmosphere of old leather and cigarettes.
illustration: Corinne Ryman/Pierre Cabannes via nouvellesimages.com

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