Behind the French Menu gives a tasty background to French cuisine, French dishes, how they are made and how they should be served.
Where there is a story behind a dish's creation and
that story may aid the diner's enjoyment then that will also be included. Bon appétit!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/298494754/ Never a mixture, a hodgepodge or an assortment
Méli-mélo in French can mean a mixture, a hodgepodge or an assortment. However, in the French kitchen a dish with méli-mélo in its name should never be any of those. Méli-mélo comes from ancient Greek where meli was honey and melo (melon) was an apple; both were already highly valued for their taste and texture and their importance is seen in Greek mythology. Méli-mélo in French cuisine will be part of a name given to dishes that offer contrasting, but well-matched tastes, textures, and colors in foods that are served together.
Méli-mélo on French menus:
Méli mélo de Framboise et Meringue - Meli- melo of raspberries and meringue. That will be the matching and contrasting tastes, textures, and colors between the raspberries and the meringue.
Some chefs just seem to like the words méli-mélo and the dishes they produce may stray far from the original meaning and be more like a jumble of ingredients. If it is not clear from the menu how the tastes and textures and colors on the dish offered are supposed to contrast and to complement each other, ask or choose something else.
The Greeks not only influenced French cuisine with the contrasting tastes and textures of apple and honey. At the beginning of the Jewish New Year apple and honey are served together and blessed, expressing hopes for a " good and sweet" New Year.