Un Jambon Beurre!
I was coming out of marché d'Aligre the other day, starving and heard people requesting 'un Jambon Beurre' at this boulangerie and thought hmm...what's that?
Just the most popular classic sandwich in France is all and you better have one if you consider yourself any kind of Francophile.
I went home and looked up jambon beurre. What's the big deal? Ham plus butter plus baguette. Not even a smidge of moutarde. How can that be good? Boy was I wrong.
Today coming again out of marché d'Aligre I stopped at La Badine de Martine for the oh-so-classic jambon beurre. Time for a taste test. I asked the serveur if they had any. It was only 11 am. She said something unintelligible (at least with my limited French)
And gave a nod to the interior of the shop so I went inside and got on line.
Everything looked pristine and delicious. Always a good sign.
The French are thoughtful. They leave posters around for you to study while you wait your turn. I'm reading Trish Deseine's fabulous THE PARIS GOURMET at the moment. It comes out September 24 and I can't wait to tell you more about it. This is the must-have bible to food in Paris. No kidding. I didn't know there are just FOUR flours used by French boulangeries. When you see a sign outside saying Grana, Banette (like at this years best baguette winner) or Bagatelle this indicates the flour used by that particular boulangerie. La Badine uses RED LABEL Bagatelle farine, a bio flour. This is why there are so many lines in Paris - so you can learn important stuff.
Et voila. The sandwich was made fresh on the spot for me in no time. I'd secretly planned to ask for a dash of mustard but lost my nerve and good thing. This is simplicity at its best. The sweet butter plus the salty ham plus the crunchy baguette make for the perfect combination. You don't mess with perfection.
A good tip - look for a boulangerie with excellent prize-winning baguettes. Your chances of getting quality butter and ham on your sandwich are in your favor.
And look for lines. Another quality indicator.
And if BEES are lining up as well you have a home run!
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