In today's PB post:
1. How to paint une baguette traditional
2A. How to speak French
2B. How to find the best baguette in Paris
3. Why the French don't get fat.
1. To paint une baguette place it right on your paper and trace around it lightly with your pencil. Start laying in your light warm colors with lots of water - yellow ochre, burnt Sienna etc. Darker cooler colors go on top.
2. Moving right along - How to speak French.
I Googled "French news out loud" and found Frenglish News = perfection.
Not only will you be able to read in French and English bits of the latest news but you can hear it and play it over and over.
Just what I was looking for.
2B. On to finding the best baguette traditional in Paris.
Thanks to Frenglish I charged off to Au Paradis du Gourmand in the 14th today. They are closed on Sundays
156, rue Raymond Losserand
Metro Plaisence Ligne 13 (take exit 5)
Isn't it funny how one thing leads to the next?
I'm not the world's biggest baguette eater but my curiosity got the better of me. What's all the fuss about?
On The Paris by Mouth tour Meg Zimbeck explained in detail what makes a great baguette.
Think: aroma, interior holes, outer appearance, and CRUNCH. The French are very big on crunch and crispiness. Who knew? Crustillante is the word to remember. You can use it for just about anything and get away with murder IMHO.
There were 203 contestents in the 2013 competition. Every baguette must fit the strict requirements of size, weight etc. By the way Meg Zimbeck was appointed to be on the jury which though quite large is a big honor. Or do they draw names out of a hat? I forget. Still Meg is the right person to be up there. Her tastebuds are the TOP!
Back to Au Paradis du Gourmand's baguette. Tunisian-born chef Ridha Khadher came to France at age 6 and started apprenticing at 14. The difference between his baguette? His takes 24 hours to make not the usual 5 hours. To me this was most flavorful and crunchiest baguette ever.
I thought I should do a some comparison tasting and stopped in 'bleu ciel' Boulanger Jocteur.
You can watch the baker making the bread as you pay.
On to Monoprix. I don't know if their MOF Chef Frederic Lalos makes the baguettes but I hope not. This was not an enticing loaf.
I nearly got knocked over by this guy running off with 5-6 baguettes from my local Alsacian boulangerie Maeder.
Again nothing to write home about. Honestly I would say take a trip to the 14th and try this fabulous bread. Everything else is dross. Well almost. I should taste more baguettes, being new at the game. As the winner of this year's competition, Au Paradis du Gourmand will be supplying President Hollande for a year and everyone else in the Elysees Palais with their daily bread. I'll be going back for more. The sandwiches and tartes looked divine too but I was trying to stay focused. I must say I now have flour over everything I own including my iPad.
3. As to why the French don't get fat.
If you start off from day 1 hanging out in pastry shops and boulangeries in your pousette, you won't behave as we do = Stark raving-famished for these goodies. It will be old hat to you. Very ho hum. You'll have built up immunity. Well that's what I think. I could be very wrong...