Tuesday, September 27, 2011

French Follies


 I am feeling re-energized, happy and excited about food, baking and blogging. I have returned to the lovely country I call home equipped with new insights and adventures from overseas. I have over-indulged and satiated my hunger on Greek, French, Swiss and Italian food. I should be sick at the mere thought of gelato or ice-cream having eaten it once ( sometimes twice ) a day for a whole month. But...I am not. Shamefully, I could eat a whole tub of Baskin Robins ice-cream without my stomach making the slightest protest.

Alas, holidays are over, I am back to work, and I have not consumed any ice-cream since setting foot on Australian soil. I want to share with you some of the delicious food I managed to remember to photograph before stuffing it in my mouth.

France
The country of romance, and the setting in which I got engaged!!! I loved Paris to bits and also explored the enchanting Loire Valley chateau's on a trusty push bike. The bread and pastry in France is THE BEST, and I will forever now be disappointed with other offerings. The French are not rude (in my experience). Greet them in their own language (it's not hard) and they will help you with whatever you need.



 Lunch at the Eiffel tower "58 Tour Eiffel' restaurant was a nice experience especially as our guide leader walked us straight past the massive line waiting and into an elevator. I chose salmon with cream sauce served with a risotto drizzled with balsamic glaze.


For dessert I indulged in a deliciously soft cheesecake served with fruit and raspberry glaze. If anyone knows what the orange ball is with the leaves attached, please let me know. I still ate it regardless.


This raspberry tart was bought from a little bakery in a little town called Onzain in the Loire Valley. Feeling very pleased with myself that I managed to order the treat in French, I then had to control myself to take some photographs before enjoying the crispy pastry and fresh raspberries.


Pierre Herme has many shops around Paris and after an afternoon shopping in Galleries Lafayette, I found the macaron store hiding in the shoe department of all places. There were some very different flavours available, but the safer options of rose and caramel were chosen. I surprised myself by enjoying the rose macaron the most, it had just the right amount of flavour and was not too sweet.



Eric Kayser artisan boulanger had a shopfront around the corner from our second hotel in Paris. This is a soft chocolate cake and mouse layered torte covered in shiny chocolate ganache decorated with red mini macaron halves. I had trouble sharing this delicious creation.


Max Vauche is a french chocolatier in the Loire Valley and although we missed out on the english tour of the factory, we could still marvel at some of the chocolate creations on show in the shop, and of course taste some of it.


I love all food, but I am a real big cheese lover. This was the result of a foodies tour conducted by a Parisian at a local food market. I forgot to write down the name of the delicious soft cheese, it was similar in texture to camembert but with a different flavour and was heart shaped (cute much!). I also tried fresh pâté (shown at the top) bought straight from the farmer who made it. I actually really enjoyed this on some baguette, and it tasted nothing like any pâté I've eaten before. Foie gras however, in my opinion, is yuck. Enough said.

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