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Some say French cooking is about extremes. Some say French cooking is about traditions. You can also hear that French cuisine is about expensive restaurants or - about food prepared in the farmhouses, from native vegetables, fruits, herbs, local cheeses, milk and cream, breads baked from wheat or ray with olives, walnuts, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, and endless varieties of herbs.
Herbs are being used in all dishes and their use is quite opposite to using hot spices. The list is long - basil, tarragon, rosemary, fennel, chives, savory, oregano, chervil, thyme, sage, parsley, marjoram, etc.
Tip: if you would like to learn how to use herbs at their full potential, consider the book by Georgeanne Brennan "The Mediterranean Herb Cookbook. Fresh and Savory Recipes from the Mediterranean Garden". It can br found at amazon.com.