Savory French Dishes

From fresh, light salade niçoise and briny escargots, to savory steak tartare and hearty cassoulet, these classic French appetizers and main dishes are not to be missed.

Salade Niçoise
Salade Niçoise

A French bistro staple, this provençal salad combines tuna, olives, cucumber, green beans, anchovies, and other spring vegetables for a filling and protein-rich meal.

Olive Spread with Figs (Tapenade Noir à la Figue)
Olive Spread with Figs (Tapenade Noir à la Figue)

This classic Provençal spread made with black olives and cured anchovies gets a chewy texture and sweet flavor from the addition of dried Black Mission figs.

Céleri-Rave Rémoulade (Celery Root Rémoulade)
Céleri-Rave Rémoulade (Celery Root Rémoulade)

In this classic bistro salad, julienned celery root melds with a Dijon mustard-spiked dressing.

Escargots à la Bourguignonne (Snails in Garlic–Herb Butter)

Use good-quality canned snails and store-bought snail shells to make this timeless garlic-and-herb-flavored dish.

Steak Tartare
Steak Tartare

Steak Tartare

Joues de Boeuf Confites

At Le Bistrot Paul Bert, chef Thierry Laurent transforms beef cheeks, a humble, relatively tough cut, into a meltingly tender entree by first marinating the beef in a heady mixture of red wine and aromatic herbs and then braising it for four hours in the marinade until the meat becomes supple and fork-tender.

Sauteed Frogs' Legs
Sauteed Frogs' Legs

Frogs’ legs aren’t just the stuff of French restaurants—they’re easy to make at home.

Herbes de Provence
Herbes de Provence

Packaged in tiny French canning jars, hand-mixed herbes de Provence make a wonderful gift for the home cook. This recipe will fill one 4-oz container; multiply it by as many jars as you wish to give out.

This recipe for rabbit cooked in tangy mustard sauce comes from David Tanis, a chef at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California.

Duck a l'Orange

The recipe for this classic French dish is based on one in James Peterson’s Glorious French Food. Get the recipe for Duck a l’Orange »


Sautéing dried herbes de Provence in olive oil for this vegetable dish awakens their fragrance. You can substitute fresh tomatoes for canned, when in season. Get the recipe for Ratatouille »

Provençal Bread with Olives and Herbs

The recipe for this bread, sold as a market specialty in the south of France, comes from author Patricia Wells. See the recipe for Provençal Bread with Olives and Herbs »

Trout with Brown Butter and Almonds (Trout Meunière Amandine)
Trout with Brown Butter and Almonds (Trout Meunière Amandine)

Fried fish with a brown butter sauce and almonds is a French classic, and one of the most popular dishes at the beloved New Orleans restaurant Galatoire’s.

Croque Madame

The croque monsieur, the classic French ham and cheese sandwich covered in cheesy bechamel, becomes a “madame” when a fried egg is placed on top.

Strip Steaks with Green Peppercorn Sauce

The recipe for this dish is based on one in Glorious French Food by our friend James Peterson. “Strictly speaking,” writes Peterson, “an entrecote is a boneless rib steak … but nowadays, in good places at least, [it’s] a contre-filet (what in New York is called a strip steak).”

Coq au Vin

This dish is made from a recipe in The Country Cooking of France by Anne Willan. A blend of red wine, various vegetables and herbs, and chicken, this dish is savory all year long. See the recipe for Coq au Vin »


This hearty, meat-studded dish from southwestern France may be the ultimate one-pot meal. A slow-simmered mix of beans, pork sausages, pork shoulder, pancetta, and duck, cassoulet takes its name from the earthenware cassole in which it was traditionally made. See the recipe for Cassoulet »

French Onion Soup

Braised onions, bread, and melted cheese are the main components of this timeless dish, which epitomizes the robust cuisine of Parisian brasseries. To make it, you’ll need six sturdy ceramic bowls that may be safely placed under the broiler. This recipe is based on one in Bistro Cooking by Patricia Wells. See the recipe for French Onion Soup »

This recipe for bouillabaisse came from Provençal fisherman Lucien Vitiello. It’s not what fish you use, he told us, but how many kinds that counts. A good fish stock is also important. See the recipe for Bouillabaisse »

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