Sunday, January 25, 2015

La Fete de la Coquille a Montmartre

This weekend my favorite Parisian foodie celebration is taking place !!

A definite DON'T MISS if you're in town.

Celebrating one of my favorite foods, the lovely scallop (coquille) from Brittany.

Everything and everyone is from the Bretagne, l'Armor area.
The REAL thing! Authentique. These are smoked scallops btw.

I went with blogger Solli. We shared 1 brochette (7 euros) fresh off the grill.

No sharing the oysters though.

Just 7 euros for a half doz. fresh, icy, super brinie oysters(huitres).

Solli slurps.

Then on to the soup guys, there every year from L'Ile Bleue. A big bowl is 2,50 but a good sized bottle is 3,50. I shlept 2 home and may go back for more. So delish.
To go with your huitres and soupe - cidre or sparkling apple juice. I got one to take home. I was loaded.

A big variety of Brittany beers and ciders.

On to dessert!

The ineffable kouign Amann, made with Brittany caramelized salted butter. We were told to toast in the oven for 10-15 minutes. I do mine in a pan on top.
I ran the other way when I saw the wonderful crepes

With salted caramel. I overdid it 2 years ago eating two crepes with caramel + scallops, oysters, soup, Kouign amman. Lecon learned.

Always the Armor-Luxe stripped Ts and all butter cookies.

The Brittany band played on...many bands.

Just take Line 12 to ABBESSES, the elevator up et voila!
The fete is right in front of you at Place des Abbesses
Do wear something red please.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Paris (Hot) Dogs!

Heavy duty research of The New York hot dog in Paris has kept us very busy at PB HQ.

Bear and I were near moved to tears when we spotted Jeff Koons' dog at the musée Pompidou last week. Memories of New York hot dogs past came to mind in a whoosh of emotion and knocked us flat. The hot pursuit was on.

Head honcho of Serious Eats, Ed Levine picked Frenchie To Go for the best hot dog of  Paris and best taste of 2014. He waxes poetic..
'The hot dog in its brioche bun is a work of art, maybe not deserving a place in the permanent spot in the Louvre, but worthy of a gallery showing on the Left Bank for sure. I took a bite. The memory of Nathan's flooded back to me. It had that snap, the grind gave it a perfect, just chewy enough texture, it had been properly smoked, and the garlic and salt that seasoned the hot dog were perfectly proportioned. 
*And it even had a surprise, an innovation that US hot dog sellers should take note of: the housemade sauerkraut, redolent of juniper, was beneath the hot dog, nestled in the depths of the brioche bun. It was the hot dog equivalent of finding the surprise gift in the old boxes of Cracker Jacks.'
We went charging off for a dog. Is he talking about the same dog I ate? The bun was not soft. The mustard squiggles got on your hands whilst eating?!(8 euros)
A classic Nathan has the sauerkraut piled up high on top.
Underneath the dog? No way José!

One can see why the French are entranced by the iconic classic NY hot dog.

Doth not the French éclair appear to be a relative? Having perfected the one, they are perhaps driven to perfect the other?

La Mosaique - Pat's Hot Dog 56 rue du Roi de Sicile Marais was buzzing last Saturday.

Could this be Pat? To busy to ask.

You put on the toppings yourself - Relish, hot peppers and tiny fried onions.

I got the 'Alsacien' not noticing it was a chicken dog. This tasted more like a REAL New York hot dog than Frenchie I gotta say. Plus gelatteria Pozzetta is across the street waiting with pistache gelato. What's not to love? The price is right too.

At Les Halles cinema I passed on the so-called Original New York dog. No kraut on offer.

Leonie's Deli is brand new, open just one month 67 rue d'Argout

Everything is bio.
I got the 'Bonnie and Clyde'
pain blanc - saucisse de Strasbourg
cheddar fermier - relish - oignons frits
moutarde douce / ketchup
Did they have any kraut?
No way. Too stinky they said. Hmmm.
Other options:
Paul et Virginie, Jeanne et Serge, Laurel et Hardy, Tristan et Iseult.

This shop LOVES hot dogs and does them proud. Their serving tray has a mission statement printed on it. You won't need a book here.

On to HUTCH 63 rue du Faubourg Saint Denis 75010

This place came the closest to fulfilling our dreams of the REAL New York dog. Their options are simple and right on. All for 4 euros.
Manhattan (cheddar)
Brooklyn (oignon confit)
Coney Island (chilli! a first in Paris)
New York(chou blanc!!)

And they didn't mind a bit putting the sauerkraut on top. Yahoo

Ze dog New Yorkaise parfait at Hutch wins Top Dog in Paris.
For a brief moment I thought I was back in New York.
Will a Sabrett hot dog cart please come to Paris!!
Now back to eclairs.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Paris is OK

PBer Carolyn wrote and asked if I was OK?
She'd seen pictures of armed soldiers in the streets of Paris.

I've seen Parisians walking their little dogs and eating ice cream cones. No soldiers.

The cafes were full up on Saturday, a nice sunny day.

In the Marais everyone was carrying orange BHV sale bags.

Me too.
I fell hard for this little Cotman travel watercolor box on sale. Reduced from 72€ to 28€. My excuse? I will paint in cafes (my new year's resolution is to sit in a cafe now and then).

I've had these travel sets before.

At least 15 years ago same box in a different color. I wish I could still fit into that Agnes B. top...

Paris pastry chefs are busy gearing up for Easter/Paques so I had to go to a tasting on Friday at Christophe Michalak Masterclass 60 rue Faubourg du Poissonniere. 75010

Michalak always puts a unique, whimsical twist on classic French desserts.

Like this grilled croque monsieur sucre  Michalak created on the spot on his new Panini toaster for us to taste. Inside Valrhona chocolate ganache, citron vert and banana sprinkled with caramelized sugar. Yum.

Sunday night I was running to catch an early show of Whiplash and looked in at Un Dimanche a Paris full of people buying chocolate.

A quick look inside Grim'Art, a pen shop. Addressing lots of envelopes, pens and calligraphy have become a recurring obsession.

By the time I got to the Odeon, Whiplash was sold out. Parisians are going to the movies folks.

Walking home I passed the 3-day brocante(outdoor antique market) at Mutualite-Maubert.

I used to be obsessed with silverware before pens and envelopes took over my life...

I went and saw Whiplash tonight. Excellent.

When I came out of the theatre the cafes were filled with people.
Still no soldiers.
Notre Dame is beautiful as ever too.
Paris IS OK people!