August 24, 2010
It’s been universally acknowledged that August is the month of sloth. Is that a problem for me? Jamais! My parents are in town and apart from my mother who doesn’t seem to understand the word lazy, the rest of us are fans of the easy life and what’s easier than to hop onto the Eurostar and 2.5 hours later alight at Gare du Nord in the middle of Paree, our family’s favourite European city. Oh yes, lazy and hungry. That’s my family.
One of the main things we look forward to in Paris is breakfast. No continental breakfast in the hotel for us, thank you. It’s got to be the full French, in a café, with a surly waiter. Ever since I was a wee babe I’ve dreaded waking up in the mornings. Headaches, nausea, fatigue, they all seemed to conspire to keep me chained to the bed. But in Paris, I leap out of bed like a ballerina, ready myself like Wonder Woman and am ready to hunt out a nice little café. Why? For this, of course:
Tartines, croissants and café au lait. So simple, yet SO delicious. A tartine is simply a French baguette (MUST be baked that morning) sliced and halved with a generous dab of unsalted creamy buerre. The crust needs to be light and crunchy and the middle should melt into the crust on contact with your mouth.
It’s a pity you can only get a proper baguette in France. We’ve hunted high and low in London and can’t find a decent French baguette. Some say it’s the water, some say it’s the flour. I say it’s outrageous and I want some in London NOW!
Some people like to relive their student days by doing this:
Yes, that’s my father, nickname: Boule Miche (no prizes for guessing his favourite street in Paris), dunking his tartine into his café au lait. Mais c’est fou!
We had this lovely feast in a small café across the road from the famous secondhand bookshop Shakespeare and Company which Kayoko noted appeared in the movie Before Sunset with a beautiful view of the Notre Dame. Smart girl. So special and the tartines were so divine that I forgot to take down it’s name…