It turns out, she feels the same way about language. English suits her just fine when it comes to blogging, even though French is her native tongue.
Dusoulier has gone from writing software for marketing tools in Silicon Valley to blogging and photographing the inspiring food markets of Paris and the dishes she creates from her finds.
CNET News.com caught up with Dusoulier at a London cafe between book tour appearances to discuss food, blogging and the dot-com experience that brought her to a new way of life.
Q: What gave you the idea to start a blog about Paris and food?
Dusoulier: Initially, I started it as sort of an online food journal to keep track of my cooking and also to share my recipes and ideas with other cooks because I had been cooking with growing passion for a few years. After a while just cooking wasn't enough...I had so many things that I wanted to say and share that I needed to channel this energy and these ideas and turn them into something else. The blog was a good format to do that.
Where did you get the idea for the name "Chocolate & Zucchini"?
Dusoulier: I chose that name because it illustrates the two aspects of my cooking, the two sides of my cooking personality, so to speak.
Dusoulier: I'm very drawn to anything with fresh produce, organic ingredients and healthy eating, but also to sweets and baking and chocolate. So chocolate and zucchini were a good illustration of the kind of topics that I was going to talk about.
You started this blog in September 2003. How long did you blog before it really started to pick up and you could do it full time?
Dusoulier: The readership grew gradually. It took about two years for me to feel confident enough to quit my day job and do this full time, which coincided with my signing a book deal. That was two years ago.
How did the book deal come about--who found you?
Dusoulier: I found them. I took an agent and worked on a book proposal. Then we shopped it around and found several publishers and chose the one that had the most interest in us.
You're Parisian by birth yet choose to write in English. Why?
Dusoulier: When I started the blog in 2003 there were very few food blogs and almost all of them were written in English. There were not any blogs in French and no blogs about food in French, that's for sure...Since there's quite a strong sense of community between bloggers, when I started mine it was to join that little community of food bloggers that did exist at the time. They all wrote in English, so I wrote it in English as well. I had also come back from the U.S. about a year before that and I missed speaking English on a regular basis. So this was a nice way of doing that.
That's right, you worked in Silicon Valley. How long were you there, and what brought you to California to begin with?
Dusoulier: Two years between 2000 and 2002...I had graduated in computer science from my university in Paris (Dauphine University) and at that time, and still now, in software development Silicon Valley was where things were happening. My boyfriend and I wanted to try and do our end-of-studies internships there, which transformed into full-time jobs for both of us, in different companies though.
What did you do while you were there?
Dusoulier: I was a software engineer for a dot-com company, called IQ.com. We had an e-marketing platform that we sold to other companies so they could serve marketing offers, sweepstakes, scratch-offs and surveys from our servers. So you can use this sort of marketing platform where you have an interface in which you type your questions and then you just have this little piece of code that you insert on your Web site. Everything else is taken care of. Then you can go and look at the results and how many people have clicked and what they have answered...a marketing tool for Web sites.
What happened to IQ.com?
Dusoulier: We got bought over by an Irish company in mid-2001 and so IQ.com does not exist as such anymore. Although, the original owner, I think, reacquired the name IQ.com. But the company as I knew it does not exist anymore and the whole engineering department was moved to Dublin and so that was the end of that.
No interest in going to Dublin then?
Dusoulier: No, not really. I mean, I had lived for two years in California and if I was moving anywhere it was home, not Ireland.
Now you have two books out, one in the U.K. and one in the U.S.
Dusoulier: Yeah, it's the same book, but different editions. The American version uses cups and spoons and the British version has metric measurements, and the French version is coming out later in the fall.
So you are translating for the book. Do you have a French translation of your blog, now?
Dusoulier: No. If you have to translate the entire content, everything you write, if you have to write it twice, it's twice more work.