Is there a gerund form in French? Or the only way to express a gerund idea is through the simple present?
In English we generally use the word "gerund" when the present participle verb form is used as a noun. (Seeing is believing) French and many other languages use the infinitive for this. This causes discussions about whether other languages have gerunds, but Romance languages at least have a verb form whose name is a cognate, so I stay out of that discussion. I am including a link which describes some uses of the present participle in French. You will see that many times when we use the ing form to modify the subject or the verb, the French present participle form is used. http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/presentparticiple_2.htm
In the hints for faisons, it says (let us) make. So, I put "let's make crepes" it was incorrect, but I don't totally understand why. Thanks in advance for your help.
From an online dictionary:
"Let us is the first person plural imperative, which we only use in very formal situations. Let’s is the short form, which we often use to make suggestions which include ourselves"
Examples of the short form:
- Faisons des crêpes = Let's make crepes
- Faisons une pause café = Let's take a coffee break
- Faisons une salade = Let's make a salad
Example of formal usage: Let us pray
No. That is not correct. You would never use a conjugated faire with a past participle as you did here. Faisons would be followed by the infinitive prier. But even then you haven't said let us pray. The let us is inherent in the English we imperative form. So Let us pray is simply Prions. Further more, faire is generally translated as to make or to do. Laisser is to let or allow in other, non imperative uses.
It doesn't make a lot sense in English. You can "make" or "prepare" a food, but not "do" it.
No. Crepes do not contain baking powder or baking soda for leavening. They also typically use melted butter vs. oil in pancakes and have a higher liquid to flour ratio. Basic crepes contain only eggs, milk, water, a pinch of salt and flour.
Verbs are always conjugated based on the subject, which is nous. Faisons wouldn't agree with crêpes anyway. Should you have a reason to say that the crêpes make something it would be Les crêpes font...
I wrote "we made pancakes." This was wrong apparently but for future refference what would be the past tense for this?
It would be "nous avons fait des crêpes" (passé composé) or "nous faisions des crêpes" (imparfait) depending on the context.