Today’s post is a full-on Happy Meal. I need that, don’t you? This week Mother Nature shot Springtime out of a cannon into the High Country. We went to bed in Winter and miraculously woke up to this glorious season of rebirth.
During winter our highway that winds from Aspen over Independence Pass is closed. Since this is the last week before it’s opening to traffic, a friend and I planned one last quiet hike up the Pass. We were not alone. This beautiful fox, carrying not one but two bagels, trotted by. A Papa, probably, but this fox was on a mission to reach the den.
Every week I include one simple and delicious user-friendly recipe. Because I enjoy discovering new chefs (to me), using unfamiliar spices and trying unknown techniques, another post recipe may be more complicated. With my Cook-the-Book-Fridays group I’m cooking through David’s Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen. As a group, we commit to making every recipe in his cookbook. This week I covered all three bases.
CREAMY LEMON PASTA by BARBARA KAFKA
1) Throughout the summer I need quick supper recipes. I’m a volunteer USFS ranger again this summer. If Smokey still wants me, I’m In. On days that I “work,” I return home hungry and tired. (Make that starved and exhausted.) This week I pulled up Barbara Kafka’s Creamy Lemon Pasta recipe which she first introduced in a March, 1999 New York Times column, Secrets of a Lemon Lover In a Season of Plenty. Almost 20 years later Food52 website considers it a Genius Recipe.
2) It was my Clara’s 15th birthday this week. Although I wasn’t in California for the family celebration, I still could make merry by baking Yotam Ottolenghi’s Beet, Ginger and Sour Cream Cake. I poured a glass of champagne, toasted my precious youngest granddaughter and discovered beets and bubbly bond beautifully.
Ready for the oven…
3) This week’s Cook-the-Book-Fridays recipe choice is David Lebovitz’s tasty Cheese, Bacon and Arugula Soufflé. Loyal Readers, may I be blunt? Some recipes, like Bûche de Noël, Turdunken and Baked Alaska, should be left to the pros. While this soufflé doesn’t rise to the difficulty of these examples, it is complicated, labor-intensive and high altitude-resistant.
Truthfully, this soufflé was very, very good.
It’s always exciting to spot a colorful Western Tanager.
I went birding with another ranger yesterday. It was a gorgeous, sunny morning and we were reminded how totally amazing these winged creatures are. Yellow warblers are migrating back from Central and northern South America. Hummers are flying in from Mexico. The Great Blue Herons are back in residence at the North Star Preserve and Rock Bottom Ranch and a pair of ospreys have returned to their traditional nesting site near the Rio Grande Trail in mid-valley.
Who doesn’t love a chubby American Robin?
The American Kestrel is the smallest and most common falcon in North America
There was drama of the fowl kind in California today also. My daughter, Melissa, like her mother, is an early riser. This morning she discovered an injured adult finch on their front walkway. Although Clara did not inherit the early-riser gene, she is an intern at Wildcare Eastern Sierra and always “on call.”
“Help me,” says the frightened finch.
The lucky baby received Clara Care until they dropped it at the sanctuary before school. Our worldwide bird population, a ‘vital gauge of our ecosystem’s health’ is in peril. The Trump administration is also rapidly rolling back environmental laws and protections for all migratory and endangered birds. Proud of my family. Every feathered friend is worth saving.
We don’t see many Turkey Vultures in the area except in flight. This guy, who was just hanging out on a low branch, startled us as we walked by.
CREAM LEMON PASTA by Barbara Kafka
Yield: 6 servings.
12 ounces wide egg noodles (or, any pasta of your choice)
Zest and Juice of 2 lemons. Cut zest in very thin strips 1 inch long
1 cup heavy cream
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper.
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add noodles and stir to separate. Cook for 8 minutes or until tender. Drain, then return to the cooking pot.
2. Just before noodles are done, combine the lemon zest, cream, salt and pepper in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat for 2 minutes or until cream comes to a boil.
3. Pour cream mixture over drained noodles and add the lemon juice. Stir to coat. Cook over medium heat, stirring 1 or 2 minutes until all the liquid is absorbed. Season with additional pepper, if desired.
1. Start by using 3 TBSP of lemon juice and add more to taste;
2. The variations and add-ins to this pasta dish are numerous: green veggies (peas, of course); mushrooms; kalamata olives; onions; chicken, sausage or tuna. Or, use the pasta as a small side with steak, shrimp or white fish.
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BEET, THE BEET, THE BEET.
BEET, GINGER & SOUR CREAM CAKE by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh, Sweet cookbook
The cake is ready for the oven. I used an 8-inch springform pan but an 8″ round or square pan works also.
David Lebovitz wrote a wonderful post about baking this cake. Get the recipe and see his comments here.
CHERRY CHOCOLATE PECAN COOKIES by The Skinny Chick
For the previous four winters I’ve emptied my Aspen condo of personal belongings, parking them in my down valley storage unit, and handed my keys to The Gant’s front office personnel. There’s no way to make this easy. Physically, it’s double-duty difficult, packing for a 51/2-month journey while converting my home into rental space. Mentally, it’s always been way outside my comfort zone. I just couldn’t get my head around the process.
ONE BOWL BUTTERMILK BRAN MUFFINS by CAFÉ SUCRE FARINE
Usually I return to Colorado, as I did last week, dreading the re-entry chores awaiting me. But this year, compared to the past, that has seemed less daunting. If I weren’t dieting, I would call it “a piece of cake.” In four years I’ve apparently morphed from hunter-gatherer to true believer, less is more, keep it simple. My mantra is if I take something out, don’t bring something else in.
MADELEINES au SARRASIN by David Lebovitz
Every year it seems my less becomes less, my simple is simpler. It may be, as someone suggested, I’ve stepped so far outside my comfort zone I’ve forgotten how to climb back in. If that translates to lightening my load, I vote yes.
SPRINGTIME in the ROCKIES (no grumbling, we desperately need the moisture).
After a 3-month hiatus from cooking, hanging out in my kitchen says Welcome Home. Since we’re into comfort zones, being inside and out, I’m thinking this blog sorta teeters on the edge. Dear Readers, when did you last do something brand spanking new? Something that nudged you outside the familiar. That’s the true test.
ONE BOWL BUTTERMILK BRAN BREAD
This blog has forced me into a deep dive of unknown recipes, techniques and ingredients. Every week it’s a learning experience with more failures than I will ever admit. In fact I’ve become quite comfortable with failing. Oops!
This week I’ve baked three newbies which I guarantee you bakers will be trying. My new bestie is buckwheat flour, not only healthy but hearty. You’ll see me using it in more recipes this summer. Although I’ve never waded through Proust’sIn Search of Lost Time, I can now bake madeleines. Hooray for me. Thank you, Dorie Greenspan and David Lebovitz.
Each summer I need a tasty, freezable drop cookie recipe for snacks and to share. This chunk of sweetness loaded with two kinds of chocolate, roasted nuts and dried cherries is quick, simple and delicious.
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup coarsely chopped white chocolate
1/2 cup coarsely chopped milk chocolate
1 cup dried tart cherries
1/2 cup coarsely chopped, roasted pecans
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla extract, and beat to combine, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
4. Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix in cherries, white and milk chocolate, and roasted pecans either in the mixer or with a wooden spoon.
5. With a cookie scoop or tablespoon, drop 2 tablespoonfuls of dough and place about 2 inches apart on the baking sheets.
6. Bake until just set and golden, about 12-14 minutes.
7. Let cool on baking sheets for about 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling.
TIP: Store in an airtight container for about 3 days or freeze for up to a month
MADELEINES au SARRASIN(Buckwheat Madeleines) by David Lebovitz, My Paris Kitchen
Besides the madeleines, I also used the leftover batter to make delicious mini-muffins.
David’s take on madeleines using buckwheat flour is genius in a hearty, more healthy manner. It’s less sophisticated and refined than its white flour sister but the guys at The Gant’s front desk loved these “seashells.” In fact James told me, “My mom used to make these every Christmas.”
YIELD: 18 madeleines
8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cubed
2/3 cup buckwheat flour
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup egg whites (usually about 4 large eggs)
1 tablespoon dark honey
When crepes are made with buckwheat flour, they are called Galettes. We recently ordered this Galette at Breizh Cafe in Paris.
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. As the butter cooks, it will sputter a bit and then it will settle down. Cook the butter until it’s the color of maple syrup and smells toasty. It’s about a 5-minute process. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. (See the How-To below in TIPS.)
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in the egg whites and honey. Stir in one-third of the browned butter and gradually add the rest of the butter, including all the dark bits, without scraping the bottom of the pan. Mix until the batter is smooth.
3. In a madeleine mold, brush the indentations with melted butter. Fill the molds three-quarters full with the batter. Bake for 9-10 minutes, until the spring back lightly when you touch them in the center. Because of the color of the buckwheat flour, color is not a good indication of doneness.
4. Remove from oven, wait 30 seconds, then tip out onto cooling rack. Madeleines are best eaten warm, or on the same day they are made. Sprinkle confectioners sugar on the tips if you wish.
TIPS: Here’s a great link to browning butter 101 by Joy the Baker (Love, love, love Joy the Baker). Personally I would take my butter to a deeper brown, a maple syrup color, than Joy suggests.
For most of my adult life I have searched for a tasty bran muffin. I like the idea of a bran muffin and the taste. Unfortunately I’ve never met a bran muffin that isn’t dry. With that first bite, I’m always hopeful. By the third bite, dry, crumbly, no flavor. Chris’ bran muffin passed the dry test. In my opinion the honey-butter glaze is the magic. Before you glaze the warm muffins, why not poke it with three small holes so the glaze will seep through.
Here’s Chris’ link. Besides the recipe, she offers many tips, a must-read.
CooktheBookFridays is a international group virtually cooking through My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz. Join us by clicking here.
Bofinger Sauerkrat with a knuckle of pork, white sausage, Strasbourg sausage, sausage with cumin, smoked pork belly, pork loin and boiled potatoes. Brasserie Bofinger
Dear Miss Manners,
When I was in Paris recently, I attended a small dinner party with four other American friends. Our gracious host and hostess live in an apartment with a balcony view of the Tour Eiffel. During our marvelous dinner we set our Apple watches for “on the hour” alarms to catch the 5-minute breathtaking display of sparkling lights superimposed over the tower’s golden lighting.
That meant the five of us left the table en masse four times during dinner. Was that rude? Is an apology needed? I feel guilty. Thank you for responding ASAP.
PS – In our defense, here’s our once-in-a-lifetime view. Vive la France.
As you read this post it’s a good bet I’m boarding an Air Canada 777 making my 32-hours way to Aspen via Toronto and Denver. After more than a five months absence, my tiny 940’ condo will seem like a palace. May is always a month of construction frenzy at The Gant. That’s okay. It’s jackhammer-loud, noisy and messy with just me and the construction guys on site. As a reminder of that, I understand earplugs (free) await me.
Aspenites Karen Kribs and Cathy O’Connell enjoying the Paris Skyline with our host, Michael.
While eager to see Colorado, leaving Paris is a bit of a tug. If you’ve joined me virtually for this adventure, you already know I’ve loved my experience.
Another familiar face from Aspen, Fred Venrick.
It’s always a treat to eat white asparagus during its very short season. Aliza Sokolow, an award winning food photographer, is in the background with Dorie.
NIBBLES WITH the GREENSPANS
For starters there were oysters with gougères and salmon rillettes. The last two, which I’ve also made, were from Dorie’s Around My French Table cookbook.
In a recent post I wrote about having dinner with Dorie and Michael Greenspan who were spending time at their Paris apartment. If you recall, for more than five years I was part of a group which cooked through Dorie’s Around My French Tablecookbook. Last week Dorie called to invite me and my Aspen friends, who had just arrived in Paris, to come for drinks and nibbles. An unexpected invitation, I was very pleased as were my friends.
I had never eaten oysters before so Cathy provided a tutorial and encouragement.
Just a heads up Readers, if you’re ever invited for “nibbles” at the Greenspans, we’re talking full-fledged dinner. Let me say this about the evening…..I knocked at their door and introduced them to 3 Aspenites who they had never met before. By the end of the evening (ahem, 12:30am), we were all best friends.
Although I am being facetious about writing Miss Manners. We did bob up and down and Apple watches were involved.
All Aboard. Belgium-bound.
ANTWERP by TRAIN
At the International Market with Andrea and 3 of her 4 daughters
Paying homage to Morocco at the International Market in Antwerp
During my 8 years of food blogging many of the acquaintances I’ve known virtually are now friends. Those who live in the USA I’ve often met personally. Others who live in faraway places, not so much. That’s why last Saturday was such a treat. I finally met the very-talented Andrea Mohr who blogs as The Kitchen Lioness and lives with her husband and four daughters in Bonn, Germany.
Pomme Frites with Mayo, surprisingly delicious
Posing with Nijntje (Miffy), a storybook character
We cooked up a plan where I would come by train to Antwerp and she, Thomas and the girls would drive from Bonn, a 21/2 hour trip for us both. Miraculously, with thanks to the Europeans’ efficient train system, the day passed without a hitch. Andrea met me at the station with, what else, a bouquet of gorgeous tulips. Their itinerary included visiting the International Market and all Andrea’s favorite kitchen stores, seeing Antwerp’s historical highlights, enjoying Belgium food specialities and a hot chocolate break. Since we’re usually separated by 5,000 miles, this was a glorious meet up.
“Homeless Jesus,” a sculpture by Timothy Schmalz was installed in Antwerp in February.
Lunch – burrata and Jambon de Parme salad
Bofinger’s fish sauerkraut with haddock, scottish salmon, langoustine, sea bass, boiled potatoes and horseradish butter Brasserie Bofinger
Île flottante, Brasserie Bofinger
Memorial de la Shoah, Paris’ holocaust museum was dedicated in 2005 by President Jacques Chirac.
The Luxor Obelisk with the Grande Roue de Paris in the foreground. The ferris wheel is 2000′ high.
It’s been 5 weeks since I arrived in Paris with 2 small suitcases, keys to an Airbnb rental (first time ever) and a blank slate. Albeit unnerving, the onus on me, there’s freedom in that. If my friends and family questioned the sanity of this adventure, I didn’t know it. That was truly a gift. When I asked them, a time or two or three, “Have I lost my mind?” No one said, “Yes.”
I arrived with the wind of their optimistic wishes at my back. This trip has been truly magical. Although I’ll wring every ounce of joy possible out of these last few days in Paris, going home is definitely on my radar.
Japanese Cherry Tree, (Cerisier du japon)
Meanwhile, here’s a look at Paris Week #5, best yet.
Mary & Dorie, the French Fridays girls
FRENCH THURSDAY with DORIE
We had dinner at Bistrot Paul Bert with the man himself, Bertrand Auboyneau.
As many of you know, my blog began eight years ago with French Fridays with Dorie, an international group which connected virtually to cook the book, Around my French Table. The cookbook, newly published by the James Beard award-winning author Dorie Greenspan, contained 300 recipes.
Over the next 5 years, with Dorie’s friendship, encouragement and mentoring, we made them all. And we now look forward to cooking fromEveryday Dorie, The Way I Cook, which hits the stands October 23.
The fish is Sole and was delicious but note the cauliflower.
Dorie and her husband, Michael, who have an apartment in Paris, arrived unexpectedly a week ago and asked me to join them for dinner. (My social calendar, of course, was blank.) Before dinner Michael took me out on their balcony where, starting with the Tour Eiffel and moving left, I could see every major Parisian landmark. I’ve archived that unforgettable moment.
You can see in two photos that Dorie ordered scallops for an entrée. Here are what Coquille Saint Jacques look like in the markets.
ANGELINA, MS. BELLE ÉPOQUE
Several weeks ago I enjoyed a memorable dinner at Susanna and Philippe Saint-Loubert’s home. Susanna called last week with two questions: 1) Did I like chocolate? (Yes), and 2) Had I been to Angelina’s Tea House? (No).
“I know it’s touristy, Mary,” she admitted, “but you must go once and have their hot chocolate.”
I was game so Saturday we met at the famous Angelina’s on Rue de Rivoli. Established in 1903 by Antoine Rumpelmayer and named for his granddaughter, Angelina’s is a Parisian institution. It was designed by French architect Édouard-Jean Niermans in the Belle Époque style and retains that gorgeous interior to this day. Its fame derives from its almost pudding-like hot chocolate. We happily piled on the Chantilly cream and enjoyed.
When I was walking home from Angelina’s, I stopped to watch about 100 kids breakdancing in the middle open square at the Louvre. Two young men (not shown) were the leaders.
This is the week that my home away from home included Aspenites. So thrilled to see them.
I couldn’t stop smiling. (L to R) Karen Kribs, Me, Fred Venrick, Pat Hutchinson, Nancy Alciatore and Cathy O’Connell.
And, joined by Jim Hutchinson at the head of the table. Fred and Cathy just arrived from attending the London Book Fair where she promoted her new book to be published in September. We were celebrating.
Mille Feuille Minute a la Vanille Bourbon We ate at Le MaZenay in the 3rd Arrondisement.
My longtime friend and Ranger colleague, Judy Schramm, arrived yesterday with her granddaughter, Thea. I remember when Thea was born. And, no, I did not say that. She is darling and so excited to be in Paris.
On Sunday Cathy volunteered to take Karen and me on a sightseeing stroll. Karen and I envisioned a 2-3 hour walk especially since Cathy had hip replacement surgery 10 weeks ago. What began at 11:30am didn’t end until 5:30pm, 7 miles later. Karen and I staged a sweet sit-in and were rewarded.
Les Invalides, Napoleon’s Tomb (L), Le Tour Eiffel and Rodin’s Le Penseur (R). Hôtel Biron, where A. Rodin lived and now a museum devoted to his work.
Six weeks in Paris. Alone. Studio. 3rd floor walk-up. No elevator.
Admit it, right now you’re thinking, shouldn’t she have done this 40 years ago?
But, here’s the thing.C’est dommage.I didn’t.
I joined others for a wine/cheese tasting at Galeries Lafayette led by Thierry Givone, Wine Tasting in Paris.
Galeries Lafayette is a magnificent department store in downtown Paris.
Now, three weeks into the journey, I am surprised by its so-far-so-good success. This trip was no whim but a dream which finally evolved into a now-or never-moment. I chose “now” with the caveat being a United Airlines return ticket in my backpack.
Paris-Brest, Brasserie Bofinger, 5-7 Rue de la Bastille. Four years ago my French Fridays with Dorie cooking group made the dessert pastry, Paris-Brest. I had no idea what it was or looked like at the time. So at lunch last week, I ordered it. And, ate the whole thing!
It was in February, 2014, that Paris-Brest was our recipe choice one week. This is what I made. I remember it being good enough to share.
For le plat principal, the main course at Bofinger’s, I had Scallops with creamy risotto in thick shellfish sauce.
At this point in my life I’m experiencing Paris through seasoned eyes and with layers of learning as baggage. I’m grateful for each moment here. It was satisfying, for me at least, to capture all together Rodin’s Le Penseur, Les Invalides and Le Tour Eiffel in my lens (photo above). Each of those images which represents three centuries of world history are something special to see.
Friday night I met my friends from Edinburgh, Araminta and Charles Ritchie. for dinner at the home of Susannah and Philippe Saint-Loubert. The Saint-Loubert’s were very gracious to include me.
Susannah is a wonderful cook. She made a variation of Coq Au Vin but it was her sauce that was truly authentic, delicious and red in color as it should be. Charles and Susannah
I understand that the dessert, Génoise roulée, was from a recipe of Araminta’s but baked by Susannah. With or without fruit, perfect.
With the hits, of course, have been misses. On Day 2 it took 45 minutes for me to find a boulongerie that was only three blocks away. I went the wrong way on the metro but turned myself around at the next stop. The graffiti defacing Paris’s beautiful buildings breaks my heart. And it’s obvious the French haven’t received the memo about cigarettes. If secondhand smoke kills you, I’m a dead woman!
Last week I spent a day each at Musée Louvre, d’Orsay and Rodin. At the d’Orsay there is an specific area reserved for students to work and draw.
There are always student groups at the museums. I realized I could understand what the guides were saying to the youngsters. Sometimes I hung out with the kids. No one seemed to mind.
The guides who talk to the kids keep it simple and entertaining.
This little guy resides in this pipe at the Hôtel Biron among Rodin’s art work, rent free. He’s a very cold french sparrow!
Every night I put together the next day’s plan but even so, there’s still uncertainty, a new address to find, a snafu here or there. Whether I’m deciphering a French menu, losing my way or figuring out the Paris metro system, I know it doesn’t matter how slowly I go, eventually I’ll get there. Sharing it with you makes it even better.
On Saturday at Georges Larnicol’s, a chocolatier on my street, they needed to deliver a large chocolate Easter sculpture. The delivery car was smaller than the sculpture.
There was lots and lots and lots of discussion while the girls held the heavy and fragile chocolate sculpture.
Then they tried to load it into the hatchback. Nope. Hopeless. The last I saw of them, they were taking the chocolate sculpture back into the shop.
Flàneur – An observer who wanders the streets of a great city on a mission to notice with childlike enjoyment the smallest events and the obscurest sights he encounters.
Tuesday was Macaron Day 2018, a celebration of this beloved morsel and to raise money for cystic fibrosis. Begun by Pierre Hermé in 2013, many Paris pattiseries now participate. I went to the source (Sylvia, pictured, works for Cystic Fibrosis) to donate and eat macarons.
It’s a rainy, bone-chilling cold Paris evening, providing me the perfect opportunity to rewind this past week for you. Before these seven days blur into “If it’s Tuesday it must be Belgium,” moments, here are mine. Deciding this week’s most unforgettable sighting was a toughie. I’m calling it a toss-up between
noted architect Frank Gehry and a young french mother.
On Thursday I took the metro to the Bois de Boulogne, a large public park in the 16th arrondissement. My destination was Foundation Louis Vuitton, the city’s newest art/cultural center located on the park’s western edge. Designed by architect Frank Gehry, he wanted “to design, in Paris, a magnificent vessel symbolizing the cultural calling of France.”
I ate lunch at Foundation Louis Vuitton at its signature restaurant Le Frank, named for architect Gehry. The food was meh but sitting under his fish light sculpture worth the pricey meal. Gehry is obsessed with fish. In 1983 he was commissioned by Formica to design a fish lamp, his first, using their then-innovative plastic laminate.
Also on Thursday I was walking down the Rue de Rivoli when I approached a bus stop. Passengers were getting off while others waited to board. There was a snafu at the back door as a young mother chattering on a mobile (left hand) tried backing out of the bus while tugging a stroller (right hand). Bags were hanging from the stroller and, oh, the baby of course. After maneuvering it down the steps, her stroller landed with a loud thud. Mama’s talking never lost a beat. The gathering crowd watched in amazement as she gathered herself, making her way who-knows-where.
It’s nice to pick a neighborhood bistro, always a friendly stop. Mine is La Fontaine Sully.
The July Column is a monument standing in the center of the Place de la Bastille to commemorate the Revolution of 1830. (Think actor Hugh Jackson.) It anchors my neighborhood and is the beacon to make my way home everyday.
LIFE HAPPENS, CHOCOLATE HELPS
Despite the weather, Parisians seemed intent on celebrating Easter week. While we North Americans are partial to jelly beans and Peeps, flavored marshmallow candy shaped into chicks and bunnies, the French prefer chocolate. For the myriad of artisanal chocolate shops in Paris, Easter is profitable.
Johana helps me choose my chocolate at Edwart’s. David Lebovitz recently featured this shop in his blog.
She insisted I sample a number of chocolates before choosing my own. By the time I finished sampling I didn’t need a box of chocolates!
Patty Price, an extraordinary baker and blogging colleague who lives in San Francisco, is in Paris taking classes at La Cuisine Paris. We met at the popular Breizh Cafe and talked (what else?) food while treating ourselves to Chef Larcher’s galettes de blé noir, buckwheat crêpes.
BAKE the WORLD a BETTER PLACE*
Tuesday I joined La Cuisine Paris for its three-hour Marais Soirée Gastronomy Food Tourto offer my taste buds an intensive workout. It was the ultimate CrossFit training session – wine, charcuterie, fromage, bread, Foie Gras, and chocolat but the pastries…full stop.
During the food tour our guide, Amber, suggested a #food hack. “If a patissierie, boulangerie or chocolat shop has chandeliers, go in.” We stopped by Aux Merveilleus de Fred (has a huge chandelier) where the bakers work in the windows. That’s very enticing for those who pass by. This shop’s main product is the merveilleus, a fantastically rich cake with a layer of meringue, a layer of whipped cream, a layer of meringue, a layer of whipped cream followed by a coating of one of 7 different toppings. Oh la la
The product. (I chose pink – cherry.) Aux Merveilleux de Fred photo
NO, JUST NO
Centre Georges Pompidou
CROWN of THORNS
The Cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris, Gothic architecture at its finest, was the destination of choice for hundreds of tourists.. I happily joined the crowd to look, see and marvel. It’s also a Friday, the day the Crown of Thorns, the wreath reputed to have been worn by Jesus, is displayed. This relic traveled from Jerusalem to Constantinople circa 1063 and by 1238, during the reign of King Louis IX, landed at Sainte-Chapelle for safekeeping. Thorns were often given to European royals to commemorate great events. At the British Museum I recently saw a thorn gifted to Mary, Queen of Scots when she married King Francis II. The thornless remains are kept in the treasury at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.
I don’t do selfies well but wanted to show that I was there. Notre Dame Cathedrale. (I’m in the red stocking cap on the right.)
The Crown of Thorns, from afar. I got closer which was very exciting for me but was in a cameras forbidden area.
Happy Easter to you readers celebrating Easter this coming week. I also gratefully appreciate so many of you for commenting or sending me e-mails, texts and articles since I’ve been in Paris. It keeps the solitariness at bay.