Tuesday, August 19, 2015
I was planning to have cold hazelnut yogurt for a quick breakfast in the morning, but decided on a fresh vanilla crepe instead. This was filled with Ova-Maltine, a French Nutella-like spread that melts like a dream. There are even little crunchy bites of wheat inside. I can’t wait to bring a jar home. This crepe was hot and delicious.
In the morning, Seline and I went to a grocery store to exchange a 100 dollar bill into some smaller bills, and on our way to the Luxembourg Gardens and Angelina (lunch restaurant), we passed a Brandy Melville store. Seline picked out a dainty silver bracelet, a grey T-shirt, and something else I
don’t care about forget.
Angelina is an elaborate tea room, and this location opened recently at the edge of the Luxembourg gardens. It is a tad smaller than the larger location on Rivoli Street, but quieter.
Angelina specializes in breakfast and brunch, but they have a massive selection of lunch salads and sandwiches as well as a lovely array of desserts. We sat right in the corner. It was about 12:30, and there were only a couple other customers in the restaurant.
Today’s lunch was certainly a memorable one – definitely one of my top three in Paris so far.
I ordered the Quiche du Saison (seasonal quiche), which was made with goat cheese and served with a fresh mixed green salad + French dressing.
Seline decided on the club sandwich. There were a couple club sandwiches to choose from, but she chose the Angelina, which was filled with tomato, hard-boiled egg, chicken, salad leaves, and mayonnaise.
Her sandwich was served with a mixed green salad and some roasted potatoes, which she thought were quite bland. She seasoned her potatoes with salt before devouring them all, and ate all the green leaves in the salad. Apparently purple veggies are too bitter?
Seline said there was a fair amount of Dijon mustard in her sandwich, which she absolutely HATES. She tried her best to wipe out all of the grains of mustard with no success, but ate the entire sandwich anyways. Good for her 🙂 I think she knew I would be MAD if she didn’t, but I was proud of her today for finishing most of the salad, all the potatoes, and her entire sandwich.
My salad was so fresh and I loved how bright the dressing tasted: balsamic-y and not too oily. It was dressed just right. My quiche, though, completely blew me away.
Disclaimer: this was the very first time I ate quiche, so I am by far no expert on this dish! Served hot, this quiche had creamy eggs that were blended with rich goat cheese. The eggy portion was so tender and flavoured with herbs. The crust was buttery, slightly chewy with the perfect crisp on the sides and bottom. I savoured every bite of this delicious piece and was sad to eat the last bite. It’s amazing how the French can take something as simple as cheese quiche and plain salad, and turn it into something heavenly.
For dessert, I ordered Angelina’s specialty: the Mont-Blanc. This is a pastry made with three layers: a crispy meringue cookie at the bottom, topped with vanilla cream, and then lots of chestnut vermicelli. I also ordered a mug of the famous “choc l’Africaine”, which is African hot chocolate.
The hot chocolate was insane. In fact, I wouldn’t even call it hot chocolate. It was essentially rich, dark, MELTED CHOCOLATE, straight up. There wasn’t any milk in here and was more of a fondue or a pudding than a drink. It was extremely thick and so rich (but not sweet) that I could only have less than half of the mug. It was served with whipped cream to stir in.
The Mont-Blanc was an interesting dessert and not quite what I expected. The chestnut vermicelli had an interesting texture, like taro or red beans, which I really liked. There was an excellent nutty flavour that complemented the vanilla cream. The base was crispy, and I gave most of it to Seline. She likes crispy things.
So nice that Angelina is located next to the Luxembourg Gardens and palace. We saw a very photogenic pigeon that didn’t quite look like the other birds. Weird.
As we walked, I was TOTALLY dragging. It’s that time of month for me again (TMI? 😀 ) and I
needed wanted to drink all of that melted chocolate. That made my stomach feel a bit uneasy, and I know I had too much dessert. Oh – we also went to the “toilettes” (washrooms) in the garden and had bathroom passes so we didn’t have to pay a dollar. I find it so silly how you have to pay to use the washrooms here.
My stomach slowly felt better and better, even though I felt very guilty for drinking the hot chocolate. But at the same time, I’ll probably never get the chance to do that again, so it was nice to enjoy at the moment. We had a 20-minute walk through the garden and down a couple quaint streets to head to our next destination, the Catacombs.
I was super excited to see all of the dead people and skulls underground in the Catacombs! I love eerie and bizarre things because they are so mysterious and intriguing. I couldn’t wait to see Robespierre’s decaying skull and explore the underground tunnels. But all Seline wanted to do was take photos by these fountains.
When we got near the Catacombs (according to Google Maps on my cellphone), I wondered what this massive line was. It extended AROUND a garden. When we finally reached the front of the line, we realized it WAS the entrance to the Catacombs… and it would be a three hour wait minimum. Darn!
Luckily, there was a boulangerie/patisserie (bakery/pastry shop) nearby, which I researched beforehand. Patisserie Moisan baked everything with organic flour and has a huge selection of creative French pastries and breads. I loved how everything is “bio” (organic) and bought an almond bread, an almond croissant, and a small box of financiers. Seline wanted a big baguette. I never wanted to leave!
We took the Metro, then the RER, and since Maggie had been kind enough to drive us home every day, were asked to try taking the Disneyland shuttle bus home. I still find it crazy how the Dubosts live five minutes from Disneyland Europe. On the bus, I knew we had to get of at the station Coulee-Verte, but wasn’t quite sure when to press the button because all of the streets look identical, lined with neat white houses with red brick roofs.
Seline and I stared out the window for about 7 minutes, carefully watching the streets to see if we could recognize ours – la Rue de Roseaux.
“Excusez-moi, est-ce que vous pouvez arreter a Station Coulee-Verte, s’il vous plait?” I asked the bus driver if he could please stop at Coulee-Verte for us.
“Il a deja passee,” he replied, telling me that the station had already passed. Then, he advised me to get off the bus at the next station. WHAT? Seline and I didn’t see any familiar roads and ended up walking to a supermarket.
Unfortunately, using GPS doesn’t usually work in France. Our region in Magny-le-Hongre is so small and new that the roads haven’t been updated. We couldn’t find our way home until I plugged in the address to the local bakery and we walked there first, then home. Whew!
But wait… as we walked, we PASSED the station we were supposed to stop at – Coulee-Verte. We hadn’t even passed it yet, and the bus driver told us to get off two stops early. I was so angry, but happy to get home. I was also glad that the ride home was only 8-9 minutes, which is quite convenient because Maggie doesn’t have to find parking to pick us up.
Dinner was late, as usual. We had a cheese board with a new cheese that I loved – sharp but mild and firm, like a Compte-Harvarti mix. We also dug into Seline’s baguette, which I found delicious. I had two pieces, plus lots of cheese and sweet melon. This canteloupe was absolutely perfect.
Our main dish was rice with stir-fried asparagus (salt, pepper, olive oil) and stuffed vegetables.
The tomatoes and mushrooms were store-bought, but Chef Eric made the peppers himself. All of them were filled with a pork + veal mixture, with garlic and herbs. I had half a tomato, a mushroom, and the roasted red pepper. I also helped myself to lots of asparagus.
Just half a serving of rice for me, because I had a bit too much bread earlier. The asparagus was very yummy – steamed for a little while before being cooked. It was a little crunchy, but still tender. Both the store-bought veggies and Eric’s were amazing. I was stuffed after this dinner.
But there’s always room for dessert! I made more crepes before dinner and everyone (except Seline) had a crepe. Mine was spread with more Ova-Maltine, which I am seriously addicted to. The perfect end to my day – yup, this was finished at about 10:00 PM. Whoa!
And if you’re wondering about the name of the post, it’s because I tripped 5 times today. Okay, I stumbled five times – sometimes over my own feet, a couple times on the stairs, and once on a pipe. It was pretty funny because Seline thought I was drunk on chocolate. Luckily I never actually fell… that would be embarrassing (though pretty funny). 🙂
It is now 8:30 AM and I am the only one awake in the Dubost home. It looks like a sunny day, but since the bakery is closed, I’m glad that I planned ahead and bought almond croissants yesterday. Seline and I are planning to go to the Eiffel Tower for a picnic before going UP the tower. We have lots more activities that we hope to squish in for the next two weeks. Have a lovely Wednesday everyone! 🙂