Franco-US love first bloomed during the American Revolutionary War. Thomas Jefferson was so touched by France’s gifts of guns and money, he publicly described a particular favourite food as “French”. It would be years before ordinary Americans tasted the sophisticated deep-fried potato dish hitherto enjoyed only by slave-owners. When they did, they liked it very much. The Founding Foodie never lived to read the tribute “French fry” written nationwide.

The Franco-American alliance was tested in 2003. When Paris failed to join Washington in its ideological slaughter of Iraqis, Washington withdrew the term “French” from its menus. That showed ‘em. The “right” to order freedom fries -- and freedom toast -- was sought and won by US politicians in their government cafeterias. Then, other patriotic diners fought to have their cardiac arrests ascribed to the USA, and it probably took the murder of a few French cartoonists before an entire nation could be forgiven by another for its failure to murder countless Muslim civilians.