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Friday, June 24, 2011

French Fast Food—Fresh and Tempting!


Leave it to the French to come up with a chain of fast food eateries where both the food and the setting are so attractively stylish that you’ll want to snap a photo!  Cojean, a 10-year-old company, has established its branches primarily on Paris’ Right Bank in the fashionable arrondissements where business people and others can pick up a quick midday meal. The dishes are prepared with ingredients that are fresh, healthy, seasonal, and definitely tasty. 

My friend, Sidne, a young American lawyer, met me for lunch at the Cojean located on Avenue Delcassé right at the exit of the Miromesnil metro stop. Although she had only a few minutes to spare, we managed to sample a good assortment of offerings. The salads were especially tempting. A chicken, fresh pea, and avocado one dressed in an arugula and Parmesan dressing and another prepared with quinoa, fava beans, and radishes won high marks from both of us. I also tried a cold tomato and zucchini soup scented with Parmesan, which was good, but
could have used a bit more seasoning. Still it was thick, colorful, and lean in calories for there was no cream in it. 

For desserts my pal ordered a layered creation assembled with a lemon cream (it looked more like lemon curd), coconut mousse, and toasted almonds, while I indulged in a Greek yogurt mousse garnished with very fresh strawberries. 

The prices are certainly not in the McDonald’s range, but they are reasonable for the quality. (Several of my French friends think that "les prix" are too high for the portion size, but I was content with my servings.)  Small salads ran around 3.50 euros, larger ones close to 7. Desserts were around 3.50 euros. Everything is packaged in plastic so you can eat on site or take it away. And, the Cojean where I ate is open Monday through Friday, but some are also open on Saturdays.

For more info, go to The site is in French, but to find locations, you simply hit on “places” on the home page. If you’re visiting Paris and want a fast, fresh, and healthy focused meal, Cojean is the place.

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