I like doing homework when it requires researching pâtisseries and sweet treats for a Parisian weekend getaway. My partner in crime from Le Cordon Bleu [and fellow Dumbledorian] Cat and I spent le weekend doing our due diligence.
I’ve been reading this great Paris Pâtisserie (perfect name, no?) blog lately. The detailed descriptions and critiques of each location and pastry are excellent for fellow pastry snobs out there. The back to back comparisons are key to finding the best croissant or macaron.
In this case, I think I’ve found one of the best éclairs in Paris:
I never order éclairs because they never appeal to me. Most are soggy from having sat in a display case all day. Damp choux filled with thick, floury-tasting pastry cream is not appetizing. This one changed my vie. Perhaps it was the croustillant on top and the fruit de la passion filling that tickled my fancy.
fruit de la passion et chocolat
Our next dessert fell short of expectations. Sichuan peppercorn with strawberry and cream is simple and delicious in concept but the result was disappointing to say the least. Puréed canned peaches with the slightest hint of strawberry purée beneath an excessive layer of whipped cream ? And on top of that, a dusting of sichuan peppercorn fighting grated tonka bean for the limelight, preserved with the despicable neutral glaze (used by French pastry shops solely for looks, never for taste, to catch the eye of a passerby). It saddens me when pâtisseries in efforts to be exotique, fail to highlight familiar Asian ingredients. What a shame, in Paris of all places! The only thing I had to be thankful for were the fraise de bois on top and the well-imbibed genoise layer between the peaches and cream. No ‘mo, s’il vous plâit.
On a beautiful day like this where natural lighting and photos with Hôtel de Ville in the background seemed to good to be true, we figured three desserts from one pâtisserie would not be overkill. Perfect place and time to celebrate with a baba au rhum.
Light, moist and rummy in my tummy. Usually I find baba au rhum to be way too sweet and rummy but this was goldilocks, this was just right. Right and upright with the phallic injector of rum. An interactive take on a classic. Way to regain my confidence, Pain de Sucre. A bientôt…