Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Good n' Plenitude

I can hear you now...

At last she's finally giving us a watercolor on her last few days in Paris! And a Pierre Herme watercolor at that.

The "Surprise Plenitude"


Pierre Herme in the rain.. Well I just happened to be passing by yesterday in the rain on rue Bonaparte...and the ever present line of worshippers was nonexistent.

Who could resist entering?
Pierre Herme seductressesThe usual suspects tried to seduce me with their intense, shiny colors and glossy textures...but I was looking for something different. Something I hadn't tried before. And something that would survive the rain and the Metro...
The Surprise Plenitude caught my eye and my tastebuds... Plus I will go through hell for anything containing CARAMEL and all 12 versions of the Plenitudes do! Along with dark chocolate, marscarpone cream and a touch of chocolate macaron - irresistable.
Did you know that "plenitude" connotes:
1 : the quality or state of being full : COMPLETENESS

2 : a great sufficiency : ABUNDANCE
This baby lives up to all expectations and more...
Along with that essential information, this baby will survive the Metro and Paris rush hour happily.

The box did not do so well, malheureusement...ahem Another sticker or auto-collant would have aided survival enormously...

Have you ever been to England during Xmas and had the mad experience of British party poppers. Wearing a paper party hat is bad enough...hmmm

Let me reassure you opening the Surprise Plenitude is nothing like that.

I had to dissect this baby...

Still the mysteries eludes of what makes this melt-in-the-mouth extravaganza such a delight. Inside lurks a surprise soup of caramel with a macaron base to support the lusciousness. All desires are satisfied here.

I've seen perfectly respectable, well-dressed French women, around the corner from the Pierre Herme Bonaparte boutique, gobbling up citron tartes IN THE STREET! How I longed to capture their image for you. But shock and common decency stopped me. What is France coming to when everyday folks eat in the street. And on the Metro I might add?

Has Paris been liberated again?

I also got the packet of 3 chocolate pH3 Plenitude "bowling balls"? These too are loaded up with caramel soup and other indeterminate but deliciousness. I went back and bought extras so I could inhale them while painting the watercolor for research purposes of course.

You MUST try Plenitude for breakfast or you haven't lived...

"Plenitude est une experience 100% jubliatoire"


  1. Anonymous7:48 AM

    fantastique - I am nearly in a coma diabétique just from seeing this morning's post.

  2. At long last, new watercolours! I was beginning to miss them seriously, Carol. This one is as wonderful as usual.

  3. Anonymous8:30 AM

    Sounds like heaven to me, you lucky duck!

  4. Anonymous8:33 AM

    The description alone is enough to die for let alone the look of it!
    Dare I consider the smell of it? to quote Calvin Klein...
    Where DO they come up with these concoctions and why are we starved for such ingenuity?
    It must be in the blood..

  5. Anonymous9:04 AM

    Oh yeah, macarons in the rain, grab your paraplui!

  6. What a way to wake up here stateside! The money shot for me is the next to last photo. I practically climbed into that one. Like an oasis for my eyes. Plentitde for breakfast. What are great idea. And the pleasure of your watercolor...yippee! A surprise today.Fabulous, mouthwatering, and sinful all the same. Those street eaters cannot be blamed for breaking protocol. This is temptation at its best...I am going back for another look, and will again and again....

  7. Oh they look lovely. You have a lot of will power not to sneak a taste in the subway! lol!

  8. Ann (MobayDP)
    The reason I didn't sneak a taste in the Metro was 'cos the box was sitting on top my head for safe keeping!
    I kid you not.
    Parisiens lose all inhibitions in the subway.
    Nothing is held sacred except very small infants in VERY large push carriages...and even then one feels temptations to do..I dare not say.

  9. You must think up ways to torture us daily. oh my.. today you out did your self. I too could have crawled into the center of that penitude. zowie.
    And a wonderful watercolor of the torture. :)

  10. Anonymous10:21 AM

    The principle of plenitude:
    Principle that if the universe is to be as perfect as possible it must be as full as possible, in the sense that it contains as many kinds of things as it possibly could contain.
    This dessert is it bien sur!

  11. I can just picture you in your little Paris flat, painting watercolors while the rain comes down outside. Paris in the rain is so lovely. I don't even have words for the Surprise Plentitude.


  12. Anonymous12:34 PM

    So scrumptious~ and a watercolor, too. Heavenly start to the day, and lifts the corners of my mouth~~
    just thinking of the street eaters. Thank you again for sharing your talents with us.
    Huge hugs,

  13. Anonymous2:32 PM

    You're diligent to post even on the day you head home, Carol. Love that watercolor, and you did one of those twisty-tie numbers I always enjoy! That thing looked a little intense even for me, who loves sweets, but this was fun to read and see, just the same. As for poppers, they're one of my very favorite Christmas-time traditions. Gets everyone in a good mood to have to wear those ridiculous little hats and find the little goodies inside. Delightful post, as always. Safe trip home!

  14. Anonymous3:51 PM

    For the love of God, that little Plenitude, aka your baby :)) looks like I would eat it through the computer screen. I think I will have to make a short trip to Paris just for that. Uh.. For now I will let you enjoy it for all of us!!

  15. I've never seen that shop without a queue and our Xmas Crackers are wonderful. If you want a really useless little, kid choking gift at the Xmas table then get some crackers - not poppers they are called crackers. If you buy them from Asprey they have diamond rings in them.
    On the subject of Plentitudes - I WANT ONE!
    Safe trip tomorrow Carol

  16. you can never leave paris! i am having such a great time living your trip vicariously through you!! bon appetit, and please pass the plentitudes...

  17. Carol, Carol, Carol: If envy were fatal, you'd have killed me with this post. What a great trip it's been to tag along on. Have a safe trip home.

  18. Wow, that gave me a cavity just reading this post! How many of the 12 versions did you buy? ;)
    I would have LOVED to see a photo of a French person gobbling up a treat on the street or on the metro. I haven't seen that yet....
    Though they gawked at me plenty each time I darted into a patisserie, grabbed a pain au choc, and then went right back out on the street devouring it. I'm sure it wasn't pretty.
    Have a nice flight home!

  19. Anonymous6:07 PM

    I absolutely enjoy your travels through France.
    I adore traveling there too and maybe the Air France strike will keep you there a little longer !!!!
    Selfish me.
    Thanks so much for sharing !!!!

  20. Finally a dissection that didn't make me want to faint ... well at least in a bad way! ; )

  21. You are the Leonardo da Vinci of Surprise Plenitude paintings! You studied every detail, to know exactly how these little gems are constructed. Marvelous job, great watercolor! :-)

  22. OK - those are amazing. I've never seen such a delectable amalgamation of chocolatey flavors. Where in the states can we begin to find such yumminess? ergh! Hmph! There is actually a french bakery about a mile from my house - but it carries nothing that looks like what you post about...

  23. Anonymous2:51 AM

    ...find a candy mold to line with chocolate. Couverture choc. Temper it. Caramel - sugar, possibly a bit of butter, but how to get it into the mold lined with choclate without melting the mold? Must be a litttle less than soft ball stage so it can cool first but still fit in.. Not too liquidy. Oops forgot the sea salt! more choc for the mascarpone (why doesn't that require refrigeration? Oh, I know, they don't last long enough to spoil!) Check that dissection photo again-- seems to be something like chocolate ganache -- YES! Ok 3 layers down, 2 to go. Where should I have put the chocolate bits? In the mascarpone I guess. Chocolate macaron, easy! and the last coverture to seal the bottom. Unmold! I still believe NO DESSERT IS TOO MUCH TROUBLE but a ticket to Paris can be SUCH a BARGAIN! Have you sent me right over the edge? It is 2 am Halloween night and between the Halloween candy (one for the trick-or-treaters, two for me) and I am lusting after Plenitude!

  24. Mmmm! Yummy! I want to try!


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