I’m currently traveling through France with family and close friends — how I wish I could smuggle some foie gras! Here’s a nostalgic list of some wonderful illicit treats I’ve enjoyed over the years:

1. Ginger biscuits for a midnight feast at my boarding school.
2. Exotic fruits and vegetables from Manaus on the Amazon, confiscated in Miami.
3. Fresh truffles for Julia Child, packed with camphor balls to distract sniffer dogs.
4. American bacon for the French chefs at La Varenne—so much crispier, they said.
5. Trunks of American flour to France for testing recipes.
6. French Mars bars to the United States for the best hot chocolate sauce for the children.
7. Christmas gingerbread houses from America to France; if the roof collapses it still tastes the same.
8. Ypocras, a medieval spiced wine, labeled “Spiced Vinegar” so it can cross the state line.
9. A vinegar “mother” from Italy for our U.S. kitchen.

While we don’t condone or encourage smuggling things back, we’d love to hear what’s on your list!