March 14, 2019 | By David Smith | Back to news

Bonjour et bienvenue,

Cuisine is the French word for kitchen, and today, I will be giving you a tour of a typical French apartment kitchen. I eat breakfast every day in the kitchen and have host family meals here three times per week, so I end up spending quite a bit of time here. Meals are important to the French. There are three important aspects to a good French night – good food, good drink, and good conversation. The kitchen is where those things happen!

Galley like kitchen that is common in France

Here’s a shot of the whole kitchen. As you can see, nearly all the space is utilized. The “hallway” look of a French kitchen is common. It tends to make maneuvering difficult – when all three of my apartment’s inhabitants are in the kitchen at once, moving around is like a dance.

Refrigerator with a red arrow pointing to the shelf I share with my host brother

First, we examine the fridge and freezer. My refrigerator always has this weird mustard-y smell, which probably comes from all the Dijon mustard that my host mom has. The fridge is as cramped as the kitchen itself. I share the bottom shelf of it with my host brother, which doesn’t leave me too much space. My half is signified by the red arrow. As you can see, I need to go shopping.

A trash bag on top of the washer that is between the fridge and sink

Next, the area to the right of the fridge. Here we can see the sink and washing machine. There are no dryers here. The clothes are hung out over the bathtub to dry. There is also no trash can. Rather, we put all the garbage into that black bag on top of the washer.

An apron to the left of the refrigerator used for drying hands

After you wash your hands at the sink, you dry them off using one of these aprons to the left of the refrigerator. Why we don’t just have a hand towel, I don’t know. I’ve never seen my host mom use either of these aprons as an apron, so I guess that’s just how it goes here. Also pictured are some of the various fridge decorations.

Black stove and oven with Celsius temperature settings

The stove and oven work very similarly to those in America. However, you have to remember that the temperature settings are in Celsius, not Fahrenheit. Wouldn’t want to burn your pizza.

Corner of kitchen with toaster, water boiler, and the microwave

Here’s the corner I use the most. It has the toaster, the water boiler, and the microwave. I’m going to have to buy a water boiler when I get back to the states – I’ve become completely addicted to tea.

Tea cabinet that is full of different brands of tea

Speaking of tea, here’s my absolutely stacked tea cabinet. My host mom keeps it stocked full of tea, so there’s no chance we’ll ever run out. Which is good.

Bread and fruit corner of the kitchen

This is the beloved bread and fruit corner. Bread and fruit make up over half of my diet.

Table with my typical breakfast of tea, toast, and fruit

Here, the table is set with my typical breakfast, full of fruit and bread. I developed the tendency of dipping bread in my tea. I’m not sure if that’s a French thing to do or not, but I do it anyway.

Reusable bags area in the kitchen

Finally, no kitchen anywhere would be complete without a bag full of other bags. In fact, the initial bag here overflowed, so my host mom got a basket full of bags full of bags. The French really like reusable bags, so it’s a good thing that we have so many of them.

I hope this gave you a bit more insight into what it’s like to live in France!

Au revoir,