Tag Archives: French Food

It’s Good to Mix it Up Once in a While

Once upon a time there was this group of missionaries. And they traveled to different islands, and tried to persuade the island people to discard their old set of beliefs, and replace them with what they promised was a new, enhanced and better set of beliefs. Because they brought food that the island people had never seen before, the island people kind of accepted some of the beliefs, but not all of them. Kind of like a mix.

I have a friend that is from Vietnam. He was telling me that many Vietnamese dishes are actually influenced by the French. Because the French had colonized what was then called Indochina (by the French, no doubt,) they had a lot of influence on the culture, architecture, food, and even the writing system. The language itself was too far developed for the French to make it as confusing as the French language, so at least that part of the culture remained fairly intact. One of the great outcomes of the influence of one culture on another are this sandwiches called Bun Mi’s. They are made with small loaves of French bread sliced in half, and filled with Vietnamese style meats and other fillings. They are incredibly tasty, and usually fairly cheap.

It’s interesting what happens when you mix one thing with another, you’re never sure you know what you are going to get. Of course if you mix yellow and blue you are going to get green, but everybody knows that. I’m talking about mixing things when you have no idea how they are going to turn out. Cultures, ideas, whole races of people (depending if you believe in any Egyptian-UFO conspiracies.) One of the most important things to consider when mixing ideas is the simple fact that you can’t usually come back, so you need to be careful when mixing two things, like countries or genetic mutations. You don’t want to create something that won’t be beneficial. On the other hand, nobody ever was able to discover something wonderful by being too cautious. When you have some of this, and some of that, and you want to bring to bear one onto the other, go right ahead. That’s how great things happen.

And I even was telling my girlfriend once about this great French-Vietnamese restaurant, and she could scarcely believe such a combination could exist. And sure enough, there the restaurant was, just like I’d expected it to be. And they have some dandy tasting frog legs there.

And the missionaries decided that it wasn’t worth it because they kept running out of chocolate chip cookies, or whatever it was they had to bribe them with to accept their beliefs. They told them and they decided that they had to leave, and then went and left them behind.