Paris, The Reality So Far

June 9th, 2012

You are looking at one tired and bedraggled gal right now.  Our trip did not get off to a good start.  After boarding our direct flight to Paris in Charlotte we sat on the plane for awhile after our planned departure time.  The captain came on the PA system and said there was a problem with a smoke sensor in the cargo hold and we could not take off until it was fixed or replaced.  We sat on the ground with updates for three hours.  The problem was never resolved and the entire group of passengers had to disembark and walk to another terminal on the other side of the airport and wait 30 minutes to board a substitute plane.  We spent over 4 hours on the ground and another 8 hours in flight.

But we are here and I am in love with the city of light.  Because of the delay in arriving, the person who was supposed to meet us and let us into the apartment could not do so for two hours.  That is why I am sitting at a sidewalk cafe sipping wine with all of our luggage.  The cafe owner was kind enough to store our luggage for us so that we could do a little exploring on rue Cler.  Who says the French are unfriendly?

Before we browsed the shops on the street we fortified ourselves with omelets and salad.  The omelets were absolutely delicious.

The market street has everything from flowers to cheese.  We bought two individual quiches, croissants and fresh strawberries.

In spite of the rocky start, everything is beautiful.  We are resting before our dinner tonight at Reed.  Will continue with my postcard from Paris soon.

My Paris Apartment Kitchen

May 24th, 2011
7th Arrondissement Eiffel Tower apartment rental

It is never to soon to plan a trip.  As you probably know we will be leaving soon on a motorcycle tour of Alaska.  This is David’s dream trip.  Paris is mine.  So I have been researching places to stay in Paris for June of 2012.  I found the perfect apartment in the 7th Arrondissement five minutes away from the Eiffel Tower and steps from Rue Cler, the famous market street.  It is on a quiet residential street and has a king size bed in the separate bedroom, both a tub and shower, a lovely living room furnished in Brittany antiques, and a full compliment of books (in English), CDs, DVDs, etc.  But this is what I really liked.  The kitchen is complete with a new stove with rotisserie oven.  I have found that most apartments for rent in Paris have only a microwave and a 2 burner hob.  It is also less expensive than staying in a hotel.  I am booking it today.  In celebration of my great find, last night I made Ina Garten’s Lemon Chicken with Croutons from her Barefoot in Paris cookbook.

All over Paris you can find rotisserie chickens.  The drippings from the roasting birds baste sourdough croutons beneath them.  Following Ina’s directions,  I sauteed sourdough bread cubes and put them on my serving platter.

I roasted my chicken.

I felt like I needed more pan juices to pour over the chicken and croutons so I added a can of chicken broth to the pan drippings.

And dinner was served.

You can find the recipe for Lemon Chicken with Croutons here.

Paris on my Mind

July 5th, 2010

We have been so busy with the cottage renovations the last few years that travel has not been a priority. But now, with the end in sight, I am longing to broaden my horizons and see more of the world. We have traveled to England, Hawaii, Nova Scotia, and the Canadian Rockies. We have been to Napa Valley, Nantucket, New York and New Orleans. But always, in spite of the fine times we have had, Paris has been on my mind. It is one of those longings that is hard to describe. It has to do with my love of French cooking of course. I want to see #81 Roo de Loo where Paul and Julia Child lived during the years of her culinary enlightenment. I want to sit at the second table in front of the main door at Cafe De Flore where Picasso sat every night after the war and chatted with his friends and order an omelet and a glass of Rose. I want to buy a Poilane baguette and a cumin flecked pork sausage from Charcuterie Alsacienne and enjoy a picnic along the Seine. I want to experience the open air markets and visit Dehillerin to find the perfect copper saucepan. My culinary longings are strong.

But there are museums, antique markets and other things on my mind as well. Planning a trip is almost as much fun as the actual experience. I would like to stay at a small hotel on the left bank. Hotel des Grandes Ecoles is one that I am considering. We will not be able to make this trip until a year from October so there is time to dream and plan. I would appreciate advice from any of you who have been to Paris. The guide books can tell you only so much. If you have been, what were your favorite cafes, lodging, sights and experiences? I would love to hear from you.

I am heading back to the porch to pour over my map and read my books. There will be no cooking today. We will be eating the 4th of July leftovers for days. But if you want a great recipe head over to My Year on the Grill for Dave’s recipe for the best pulled pork made from a smoked pork butt that you will ever taste. Dave was kind enough to walk my Dave through the steps the other day. Thanks for your email. Your advice was great and he did you proud.

© Penny Klett, Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen. All rights reserved.