Our body is a re­flec­tion of what we eat. Jor­dan Feilders, founder of Can­tine Cal­i­for­nia, and his wife Ta­tiana talk about what they hold dear when it comes to mat­ters of taste and ed­u­ca­tion.

Milk Magazine (English) - - TRANSMISSION - Texte : Aman­dine Grosse – Pho­tos : Hervé Goluza

Does your fond­ness for cook­ing stem from your child­hood?

My mother drew on her Mex­i­can and Cal­i­for­nian roots when cook­ing. When we were lit­tle, all the fam­ily would eat tacos to­gether. We’d travel the world through the dishes she made. To­day, I try to draw on this her­itage in what I do. I keep things sim­ple.

Is cook­ing a means of hand­ing down this cul­tural her­itage to your daugh­ter Sophia ?

I’m Amer­i­can. Ta­tiana is French and we live in Paris… cook­ing al­lows us to mix th­ese cul­tures. My daugh­ter eats tacos and she loves them! We took her to Mex­ico when she was very young. At six months, she sat on my knee, look­ing at all the stalls and breath­ing in all the new smells. That she en­joys eat­ing dif­fer­ent things is very im­por­tant to me.

Is learn­ing how to take plea­sure in eat­ing a fun­da­men­tal part of the ed­u­ca­tion you wish to give her?

Ta­tiana and I love good things. That nat­u­rally gets passed on. Sofia is very ad­ven­tur­ous food­wise. I al­ways used to put pep­per in her lit­tle pots of baby food. When I wanted to put in less, she’s pick up the pep­per mill and add more. I’d met an In­dian woman who put chilli pep­per in her baby’s food! I think that the more you taste dif­fer­ent flavours when you’re lit­tle, the more open you’ll be to ev­ery sort of cui­sine later.

When you launched your Can­tine Cal­i­for­nia food truck, you wanted to put good qual­ity or­ganic burg­ers and tacos made out of lo­cal pro­duce on the menu, didn’t you ?

I wanted to make burg­ers like the ones we had at home. When we pre­pared a bar­be­cue, we’d go and buy lo­cal meat and whip up some

My daugh­ter Sofia is very ad­ven­tur­ous food­wise. I’ve al­ways put pep­per in her lit­tle pots of baby food. When I wanted to put in less, she’d pick up the pep­per mill to add more.

great sauces all to­gether. To­day, we buy our sup­plies from the same or­ganic co­op­er­a­tive as we used when we started. It’s in south-west France. I also wanted to serve tacos. I dug into my mem­o­ries of home-made tacos and college din­ners amongst friends. And, into my mother’s recipes, of course…

Burg­ers are a bit like guilty plea­sures for chil­dren. Can­tine Cal­i­for­nia stops par­ents feel­ing guilty, in a way…

A piece of good-qual­ity meat, whose prove­nance is known, served in a tasty bun made by a lo­cal baker, is a fine way of eat­ing a prod­uct that, thanks to fast-food out­lets, is not “con­sid­ered” to be good cui­sine. At the restau­rant, Sofia re­ally gets a kick out of ideal child-size slid­ers. She loves com­ing into the kitchen and watch­ing the chefs at work. She re­ally en­joys eat­ing and is cu­ri­ous about food: two qual­i­ties I hope she’ll never lose!

Have you any fu­ture plans?

With the open­ing, in early March, of a lodge in Nor­mandy, I want to pro­pose a re­ally con­vivial ta­ble in a cool place in a green en­vi­ron­ment. Set­ting off on ad­ven­tures out­side and play­ing amongst the trees is just bril­liant for chil­dren. I’d like Sofia to ex­pe­ri­ence this sense of free­dom as of­ten as pos­si­ble. I’ve cre­ated this place so that chil­dren can ex­pe­ri­ence th­ese mo­ments. The idea is to gather the fam­ily around a coun­try ta­ble, while the lit­tle ones play out­side. It’s an in­spi­ra­tional project that goes hand in hand with the fam­ily life I’m build­ing…

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