It might seem amazing in the country renowned for gastronomy, that no one learns to cook in school. It is not on the curriculum. People used to learn to kitchen skills from their mother or grandmother, but now with many mothers having full-time work, very little cooking is done in the home. Mid-day meals are eaten in subsidized work’s canteens or in restaurants where luncheon vouchers, that are given as part of    wages, can be used. The evening meal is often soup or a snack. In the same way that Jamie Oliver launched a campaign to teach people how to cook, Cyril Lignac, his French equivalent, was appalled to find people living off pasta and take-away pizzas, because they didn’t have any culinary skills. He too had programmes on TV teaching ordinary people how to cook. The one cake that most French people can make, is a yogurt cake where the empty pot is used as a measure for the other ingredients. For one pot of yogurt, use one pot of oil, two pots of sugar, three pots of self-raising flour and three eggs. Mix well and bake.

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