Friday, January 13, 2012

Eating in Paris

As a PCV going to the west for home leave is always a treat for the food; although, due to the sparsity of food in Africa home leave from there was much more exciting than from China. Chinese food is just more plentiful in nutrition, veggies, and lovely spices and flavors. Home leave in Paris? My mouth hasn't left food heaven in days and I am never hungry!!! With the heaviness of big chunks of meat and milk products, I probably only need one meal a day, but it seems like three meals a day is pretty important here in Paris even though breakfast is simple and dinner starts at 8 pm or later. I was afraid that I would be starving by that late hour. That was until I realized how filling lunch would be.

One observation I have had whether you are eating at home just with family and invited guests or eating out at a restaurant, there is always a special procedure to the meal. At home in America at least in my family we just put everything on the table and chow down. Here as the meat is finishing its last 10 minutes of oven time, we start with an aperitif of sausage or some meat spread with a knife on bread or radishes or baby tomatoes. Then there could be a salad which could come after the main course. Next there is a meat entree with a vegetable side. Last items are a cheese plate, then dessert, then maybe an after dinner digestif and coffee. There is so much food that after every meal I feel like I will never be able to eat again.

What have I been eating?

Home cooked meals with Mathilde's family
  • Pâtes aux Cèpes (Mushroom pasta)
  • Shrimp and zucchini wok and a Galette des Rois
  • Beef roast with green beans
  • Chicken with morilles mushrooms then tiramisu
  • Lamb and potatoes
  • Pizza made with bread dough bought raw from a bakery
  • Raw scallops covered with lime and olive oil with artichokes

Restaurants/Out and about

  • Falafel in the back streets near Rue de Rosiers and the Metro station Pont Marie
  • Mint tea at la grande mosque
  • Beef steak and fries with garlic mayo at L'Ecurie in the Latin Quarter around the corner from Le Panthéon
  • A bakery cheese and ham sandwich eaten in the Luxembourg Park
  • Cuban tapas, fish, and spinach at Calle 24
  • African peanut sauce, and plantains at L'Equateur
  • Cocktails, scallops, and food on a stick amongst the actors at a TV series premiere, "Les Hommes de l'Ombre"
  • Sushi at Sushi Boubou in the 10th arrondissement

If you are ever in Paris definitely check out L'Ecurie for its lunch plate and the unique ambiance of an old tiny restaurant.

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