Monday, February 05, 2007

The Three C's: Couscous, Crepe and Confit!

That about sums up my weekend.

Saturday we first went to Le Marché des Enfants Rouges on Rue Bretagne, where we saw some charming international stalls serving food, one of which was run by very efficient Japanese headscarved women serving Japanese delicacies, either warm or cold, an Italian stall, very popular for its coffees and the North African stall where we were enticed by the stacked conical fragrant tagines offered up to a modest line of customers. Considering the cold weather, the North African stall was doing brisk business, selling round plates of couscous to the shivering customers who hurriedly shoveled the tasty tagines into their mouths before it cooled down too much.

I had the couscous with lamb tagine which contained generous bone-in lamb shanks cooked with onions, green olives and prunes alongside with a type of root vegetable stew. The prunes did not taste cooked with the lamb but lent a sweet touch when eaten with the lamb tagine. It was delicious but next time I aim to try the chicken with preserved lemons and green olives... unless of course, I get distracted by the Japanese stall....

After much walking around, seeing Places des Vosges and dreamily thinking about living in one of the gorgeous buildings around the area, we retired home for a cup of tea and a small treat from one of the local bakeries. The boy had a dry, tired brownie, which serves him right, really, for ordering a brownie from a French bakery! I had a beautiful thin, thin apple tart which was deliciously light and tasty.

For dinner, we went down to the Latin Quarter where we were overwhelmed with choices for cheap dinners, many of which appeared very touristy and busy. Although very much tempted to go for fondue, we plumped for crepes at La Crêperie de Cluny which I remembered from The Girl Who Ate Everything's blog. I was, shockingly, not too hungry and plumped for 8 Euro deal which included a main crepe and a dessert crepe with a bolee of cider. My main crepe was forgettable but my dessert crepe of marron creme was chestnut creme as I've never had it before. Tooth achingly sweet it was more like mash sweetened chestnut served in a warm blanket of crepe....mmmmmmnnn

On Sunday, it was free museum day! We went to the Musée d'Orsay where we headed straight for the Impressionist paintings before going down to see the sculptures and the Art Nouveau furniture by artists such as Gaudi.

Seeing such hardwork by the artists made us hungry so we traipsed across town to Montmartre, where, while not exactly capturing the mood of Amelie, we decided to stop in Un Zebre A Montmartre, which was friendly and full, which we took to be a good sign.

I decided on the Confit de Canard a Gervois (this was written on a blackboard which had rubbed up against many a sleeve so apologies if Gervois is incorrect), which was a perfectly cooked leg o' duck with a sauce of mixed mushrooms. If I had one complaint it was that the skin was not crackly and delicious but was instead quite soft and floppy. I traded the chips to the boy for some of his potatoes dauphinoise.

Everything was forgiven once the dessert came. A pear tart with hot chocolate sauce, it was a beautiful plate full of dark chocolate sauce, sprinkled with nuts, powdered sugar, cocoa and real whipped cream. It was sinful and absolutely delicious. The boy was only allowed a little bit of whipped cream while I did the plate justice.

Damn I love weekends.

La Crêperie de Cluny
20 Rue de la Harpe, 75005
Tel : 01 43 26 08 38
1, rue de la Légion d'Honneur
Tel: 01 40 49 48 14
38 Rue Lepic, 75018
Tel: 01 42 23 97 80


Monique said...

My oh my... it has been a weekend of eating for you! Couscous, I don't like, crepe, I love, confit, I rarely have. But to hear your experience, invaluable!

Anonymous said...

Viva la paree!