category Events

Milk Café – World Cultures and Cuisine, Quai Branly museum

January 29th, 2012

Each Milk Café session focuses on a world region shown at Quai Branly, using works from the museum’s collections.
Enjoy a cultural, gastronomic experience, exploring the wonderful world of dairy products! Milk in world cultures is explained by an anthropologist and reinterpreted in a demonstration by a master chef.

1st Milk Café session
Sunday 29 January – 4-6 p.m.
Quai Branly museum
Claude Lévi-Strauss theatre foyer


Did you know?
In India, milk is more sacred than cows. The cow is worshipped since it produces milk and dairy products, which widely feed the people of North and South India. Milk and dairy products are used in many recipes for food and drink and remain deeply rooted in the Indian mindset. Numerous Hindu myths involve milk, starting with the churning of the Ocean of Milk, the original ocean linked to the creation of the world and the immortality of Indian gods. Lakshmi, the wife of Vishnu, was born from the churning of the Ocean of Milk and embodies beauty, fortune and prosperity.
In Hindu mythology, Kamadhenu is a dairy cow who grants every wish and this cosmogony continues to have emotional importance for Indians. It is still common for nomadic populations to migrate, moving with their animals from one region or a season to another depending on the conditions favouring milk production.

Anne and Beena
Anne Delaballe, an anthropologist and ethnologist, and Beena Paradin, a food author, present the 1st Milk Café at the Quai Branly museum on 29 January 2012. They invite you to a talk accompanied by a tasting session focused on Indian food and especially milk in the Indian culture. India is a vast and diverse country at various levels – political, economic, social and religious. Twenty-three official languages, several religions and thousands of gods make for a diversity that few people fully grasp. Food provides a particularly rich and interesting window into India’s society, culture, tradition and beliefs. Studying food offers the deepest possible understanding of India’s multiplicity, as well as its cultural unity: with all their differences, Indians share the same value system and social structure.
Anne Delaballe and Beena Paradin look to India’s rich and varied geography to understand the main features of food. In their description, they place particular focus on milk, looking at production methods, transformation and types of consumption, as well as ritual symbolism.

Milk Café PDF (in French)

Milk Café is a series of events organised by Milk Factory and OCHA (French think-tank on eating habits)


@Pierrick Bourgault