Soon after my move to Paris, I was out and about and came upon a person distributing sample-size cups of dried cranberries with a brochure titled “Connaissez-vous les cranberries des Etats-Unis?” (Do you know about American cranberries?).
Note the striped fields and star-strewn sky that form a brilliant American flag motif.
The brochure was divided into sections: Caractéristiques (what they look like and when they are in season), Cuisine (good with muesli, yogurt…), and Santé (why they are healthy for you). The benefits of cranberries were laid out, along with recipes for cranberry sauce and smoothies.
It is true that while many French people have heard of cranberries, just as many have never tried them. I sometimes shared my warehouse-size bag of dried cranberries with French friends who visited me. On the other hand, most French people of varying ages are familiar with the Irish music group The Cranberries.
When I was about to run out, my friend who lived in Morocco came just in time with a plastic sachet of dried cranberries. Have you tried cranberries in more than one country? I noticed that the ones from Morocco were plumper, sweeter, and a brighter red than those from my local warehouse in the U.S. To my taste buds they weren’t necessarily better, but good and a rather exotic import that I greatly appreciated.
Dried cranberries are available in supermarkets in Paris but in very small packs and for a premium price. They’re not in demand, anyway. I brought mine from the States knowing that they would be a happy addition to my morning oatmeal.