Languages › French "French" Expressions Share Flipboard Email Print Jackie Bale/Moment/Getty Images French Vocabulary Pronunciation & Conversation Grammar Resources For Teachers By ThoughtCo Updated February 08, 2019 There are dozens of expressions in English which contain the word French, but are these things actually French? Take a look at this list with the French equivalents and the literal translations - you might be surprised.Where possible, definitions for these terms have been provided. To french1. (cooking) to cut into thin strips, to trim fat (unknown translation)2. (kissing) see French kiss, below French bean: le haricot vert green bean French bed: le lit en portefeuille bed that is wider than a twin bed but narrower than a double bed French blue: bleu français dark azure color French boxing: la boxe française French braid: la tresse française (hair style) French plait in UK French bread: la baguette French bulldog: le bouledogue français French cap: la bague chapeau single spindle wood molding machine French casement: la fenêtre à deux battants French chalk: la craie de tailleur literally, "tailor's chalk" French chop (cuisine) chop with the meat and fat trimmed from the end (unknown translation(juggling) tomahawk jeté de l'autre côté de la tête French cleaners: le nettoyage à sec literally, "dry cleaning" French clock: (unknown translation) elaborately decorated French clock from the 18th century French cricket: (unknown translation) informal type of cricket without stumps in which the batsman is out if the ball hits his/her legs French cuff: le poignet mousquetaire literally, "musketeer's cuff" French curtain: le rideau à la française French curve: le pistolet literally, "pistol" French custard ice cream: la glace aux œufs French cut underwear: sous-vêtements à la française (lingerie) high-waisted styleFrench dip sandwich: un sandwich « French dip » beef sandwich dipped into beef juice (called au jus) French disease: la maladie anglaise literally, "English disease." An old-fashioned term in both languages to refer to syphilis. French door: la porte-fenêtreliterally, "window-door" French drain: la pierrée, le drain de pierres sèches French dressing: la vinaigrette Only in England does French dressing mean vinaigrette. In the US, French dressing refers to a sweet, tomato-based salad dressing that does not, as far as I know, exist in France. French endive: la chicorée de Bruxelles, chicorée witloof French eye needle - une aiguille à double chas French fly: une braguette à bouton de rappel hidden button inside fly of men's pants French fry: la (pomme de terre) frite literally, "fried potato." Note that French fries are actually Belgian To French-fry: frire à la friteuse literally, "to fry in the fryer" French harp: un harmonica This term is used in the southern US to refer to an instrument made of metal or glass strips attached to a frame and struck with a hammer.French heel: le talon français (women's shoes) a curved, high heel French hen (unknown translation) In the song "12 Days of Christmas" French horn: le cor d'harmonie literally, "horn of harmonie" French ice cream: see French custard ice cream, above French kiss:noun: un baiser avec la langue, un baiser profond, un baiser torrideverb: galocher, embrasser avec la langue French knickers: la culotte-caleçon French knitting: le tricotin also called "spool knitting" French knot: le point de nœud literally, "knot point" French lavender: la lavande à toupet To take French leave: filer à l'anglaise (informal) literally, "to split/take off the English way" French lentils: les lentilles du Puy literally, "lentils from (the French town of) Puy" French letter: la capote anglaise (informal) literally, "English condom"French maid: la femme de chambre chambermaid French manicure: le French manucure American-invented style of manicure, with light pink polish on the nail and white polish underneath French marigold: un œillet d'Inde literally, "Indian carnation" French mustard: la moutarde douce literally, "sweet mustard" French onion dip (unknown translation) vegetable dip made from sour cream, onion, and herbs French onion rings: rondelles d'oignon French onion soup: la soupe à l'oignon onion soup (topped with cheese and broiled)French pancake: une crêpe In English, this is also sometimes known as a crepe. French pastry: la pâtisserie pastry French pleat: le pli pincé a pleat at the top of a curtain consisting of three smaller pleats French polish: le vernis au tampon shellac diluted with alcohol and used to produce a high gloss on wood French poodle: un caniche literally, "poodle" French press: une cafetière literally, "coffee maker" French provincial (unknown translation) (architecture, furniture) style characteristic of the French provinces in the 17th and 18th centuries French roast coffee: le café mélange français literally, "French blend coffee" French roll: un chignon banane literally, "banana bun" French roof: un toit à la mansarde literally, "Mansard roof" French saddle: une selle française breed of horse French seam: la couture anglaise literally, "English sewing" French silk pie (unknown translation) pie with a chocolate mousse or pudding filling and whipped cream topping French skipping (unknown translation) also known as "Chinese skipping," "Chinese jump rope," and "elastics." French stick: une baguette French telephone: un appareil combiné telephone with the receiver and transmitter as a single piece French toast: le pain perdu literally, "lost bread" French trotter: un trotteur français breed of horse French twist: le chignon bun French vanilla: la vanille bourbonliterally, "(the French town of) Bourbon vanilla"French vermouth: le vermouthdry vermouthFrench window: la porte-fenêtre literally, "window-door"Pardon my French: Passez-moi l'expression. Allow me the expression.