Tag Archives: boulangerie

Bastille Market

24 Apr Breton galette for meeeeee

Today I planned to wake up early to head down to the Louvre before going to Versailles (yes again) to watch an equestrian performance at the Grand Ecurie. Unfortunately, I’m just not one for waking up early and I woke up at 8:45, which would mean huge line-ups at the Louvre, especially since it’s Easter. I was planning to go to Sunday mass at Notre Dame at 10, and I didn’t think I would make it if I went to the Louvre. So I headed out for some early morning wandering instead…

All-You-Can-Spread at Le Pain Quotidien

All-You-Can-Spread at Le Pain Quotidien

Le Pain Quotidien is a chain store selling organic breads in “naturally” decorated cafés with lots of wood panelling, communal wooden tables, and lots of bread. But that’s not what made me happy. I ordered a croissant au beurre for here, and what was ON the table made me happiest. ALL YOU CAN SPREAD spreads!!! They had Brunette (hazelnut butter), Noisella (nutella dupe but organic), Blondie (white chocolate spread), Noir (dark chocolate spread), and various jams, but who cares about jams when you have unlimited chocolate spreads? Ok, just kidding, their cherry jam was excellent paired with the dark chocolate spread. So, for 2.20 euros, I had a croissant as a side dish to my million different kinds of spreads. And also went through my guidebook (which I only started reading today. Yes, my last week. lol) trying to decide where to go.

Easter Sunday Mass at Notre Dame

Easter Sunday Mass at Notre Dame

I decided I would head over to the Île de la Cité a bit earlier in case there were lines at Notre Dame, and thank god I did, as the lines were SNAKING. Ah spring break. Fortunately, I got into the cathedral just as the Gregorian mass was about to start, and attended my first mass in…many years (not since I switched high schools from a Catholic one to a secular one I believe). It was calming, and I must admit I sort of missed it. 🙂 Not to mention the venue was gorgeous and it’s breathtaking to imagine mass a few hundred years ago here. The picture above is of the English mass, after the Gregorian mass, which I snapped as I was leaving.

My next stop was the Bastille market across the street from the Opéra Bastille, a starkingly modern structure in contrast to everything else in Paris. I actually read about the market in the guidebook this morning, and I’m glad I did. Or else, I would’ve missed the chance to experience an outdoor market!

Bastille Market

Bastille Market

It was bustling and lively. There were stalls selling all kinds of things: raw meats, rotisserie, fresh oysters, Breton specialties, North African goodies, Greek deli items, Italian stalls, cheap clothing, shoes, fruits, vegetables, Chinese food, Bob the Paella guy (I think it’s a franchise), breads, LOTS of cheese, Portuguese food, and street musicians. Oh, and underwear. Yea. Kinda reminded me of 女人街, except the food they sell is a lot classier.

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Skiver

19 Apr

Today I skipped school to go exploring. SHHHH. It was such a beautiful day (and I went to bed so late last night), I didn’t want to go to school.

First I visited the Arc de Triomphe and went up to the top. It’s honestly hard to imagine how they built such an amazing structure so long ago! The same can be said for almost every other building in Paris…

I then strolled over to the Champs-Elysées for…Ladurée of course! What did you think…shopping?

This is the address of Louis Vuitton, actually. Our store on Canton Road is more impressive I think...

This is the address of Louis Vuitton, actually. Our store on Canton Road is more impressive I think...

Ladurée. Sneaky picture taking as I've heard they don't like photos!

Ladurée. Sneaky picture taking as I've heard they don't like photos!

Their Champs Elysées store is very dark inside which gives an air of mystery. There is a tea room and a bar attached. The bar looks super swanky! Unfortunately, I had no one to drink with…

Laduree viennoisseries

Laduree viennoisseries

Laduree cakes

Laduree cakes

The line was super long, and people were getting tons of things. I saw someone getting a GIGANTIC box of macarons (jealous!). I still had plans later in the afternoon though…so I only got 3 things to munch on the way.

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A Royal Visit

17 Apr

I woke up early this morning to go to Versailles. Took the bus to Saint Michel-Notre Dame RER station, and boarded the RER C to Versailles Rive Gauche. Unfortunately, I didn’t notice that the line splits after Champ de Mars, and I stayed till the last stop on the other line. The driver of the train, when he found out I wanted to go to Versailles, was like “oh….c’est très loin, très très loin….” and shaking his head. I had to go back all the way from Pontoise to Champ de Mars, then back to Versailles. Haha…instead of taking half an hour to get to Versailles, it took me 3 hours. Whoops. Fortunately, on the way back, I had a really cute kid (he looked around 5?) who got on the train at Pontoise sitting next to me. He kept on chatting to me in French, and I answered him in very bad pronunciation which he obviously didn’t understand, but he kept on talking to me anyways. Then, he refused to sit with his dad and wanted to sit next to me, and on the way he kept on pointing things out the window. And we played with his toy cars. There was one point where he kept on saying “qu’est-ce que c’est?” while handing me one of his cars, and I’d answer “C’est une voiture!” everytime. Then I did the same back to him. His dad was laughing…oh I love kids. He also had a little brother (looked around 3 years old) who repeated practically EVERYTHING his older brother was saying…word for word.

LeGay Choc

LeGay Choc

Well, back to what food I had that day. Breakfast was a croissant aux amandes from LeGay Choc (gotta love that name…pronounced as: Le Gay Shock). Apparently they also sell dick shaped baguettes on Saturday afternoons. Gotta check it out next week.

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It’s Friday! Friday!

8 Apr Random patisserie on Rue Parmentier...so pretty!

Unfortunately, gotta keep this entry short as I didn’t get to go goodie hunting much today. Today I watched a few surgeries, and was really really tired. Lunch was a brioche bought from one of the many many bakeries around the area I live…this bakery appears to suck though. I think they source their breads/vienoisseries/pastries somewhere else, as there is never a great smell of bread wafting from their store, and this brioche tasted like Maxim’s bread. I’m not even kidding. It was very uniform in shape, the crust was tasteless, and the innards were tough. It was also a scary yellow…I know brioche uses lots of eggs, but still…it didn’t taste eggy either.

Brioche

Brioche...kinda commercial in taste & texture & COLOUR

So on the way back to school for more surgeries, I passed by this bakery near the metro station of my hospital.

Random patisserie on Rue Parmentier...so pretty!

Random patisserie on Rue Parmentier...so pretty!

And got a financier. Which I devoured immediately and didn’t take a picture of. After my long, long day, I took the metro to the Rue Montorgueil area as I was craving bread today. I decided to do a taste test between Boulangerie Kayser and Boulangerie Paul, both big names in the bakery scene. Unfortunately, both were out of petit pains au naturel and I can’t finish 2 demi-baguettes…so I had to get a petit pain au complet (whole wheat bun) from Kayser and a bacon bun from Paul.

Taste test: Kayser Petit Pain Complet vs Paul Petit Pain Aux Lardons

Taste test: Kayser Petit Pain Complet vs Paul Petit Pain Aux Lardons

I was so enamored by my bread that I forgot to take a picture of the innards. Don’t worry…I’ll be back though. 😉 The Kayser bun was really really good….the crust was chewy and toasted to a crisp crust. The innards were moist, chewy, and actually did taste whole-wheaty, unlike many so-called “wheat” breads in HK. Paul’s bun, on the other hand, didn’t fare so well. The skin was tough and tasted floury. The innards had that same floury taste..but the bacon saved it. Can’t go wrong with bacon. I’ll be back to try their baguettes someday….this isn’t really fair basing their quality on a petit pain.

Huré again!

Huré again!

Of course I needed something sweet to end my day. I ended up at Huré again, the neighbourhood bakery I featured 2 days ago. I got one of their most expensive creations (I think it was around 4 euros)…a chocolate dome topped by a macaron called Le Marais, perhaps a tribute to the area they are located in.

Le Marais

Le Marais

Le Marais Innards

Le Marais Innards

From top to bottom, Le Marais consists of a biscuit base, a layer of cream, a caramel tasting ganache-y layer, milk chocolate ganache, and wrapped in a dark chocolate glacé layer. This wasn’t very good…the biscuit base was soggy. The milk chocolate ganache was reaaaaaaally gooey and I already let it come to room temperature a bit. The glacé was very thick and chewy and sugary. If it was a bit thinner, it’d work better. I have a very high sweet tolerance, but this was still way too sweet and stuck in my throat. I had to wash it down with water. =S Should have gone to Stohrer instead while on my bakery march.

Well, really tired now….off to bed, hopefully for a great exploring weekend tomorrow. The weather looks promising!