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These biscuits have been baking in our Vermont kitchen all winter. I stumbled upon the recipe while experimenting for an event I catered back in December and have been making them weekly for my family ever since. Not only are they tender and flaky, delicious served alongside a big Smithfield ham or a steaming pot of soup but they can also be prepared, frozen, and then baked to perfection just ten minutes before serving. The result: in no time (on a weeknight, for a spur of the moment snack, for entertaining, to accompany you on a mid-winter snow tea party!), the real thing- – biscuits that are pillowy, that puff up off the baking sheet, and turn golden brown on top.

As you might imagine, this is a boon for someone hired to serve a meal as it’s imperative to have as much of the work done ahead as possible. There’s no time to be working gently with pastry dough, for rolling it out, or for cleaning up the dusty mess that settles everywhere just as guests are arriving. At that point it’s show time and the cardinal rule of professional cooks is “Never Let Them See You Prep” so these served my catering purposes perfectly. I was able to – calmly and neatly – pop a sheet of twenty-four of these homemade frozen biscuits into the oven and then serve them effortlessly alongside the Baked Virginia Ham, Mixed Green Pomegranate Salad ( Fork on the Road December 2012), Potato, Cheddar and Garlic Gratin, and a Local Cheese Platter. It was a delicious menu, a lovely holiday evening, and the beginning of a beautiful biscuit friendship. I hope that they warm up and improve the flavor of your winter as much as they have ours.

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The Best, Flakiest, Most Tender of Biscuits for a Vermont Winter

Many thanks to Bakewell Cream for the heirloom recipe below. They’ve been making their incredible “Bakewell Cream” product in Hamden, Maine for over sixty years and I’m convinced this cream of tartar-like product is the secret to delicious North Country biscuits. If you can’t find any in your local grocery store, order it online. I source mine at King Arthur Flour and though it may seem expensive for an 8oz jar, it lasts quite a long time. As I mentioned above, I’ve been making batches (actually, usually double batches) regularly for the past several months and still haven’t run out. And remember: you can either roll out these biscuits and pop them right into a 475 degree oven or you can freeze the pre-cut dough and bake as needed. If baking them from the frozen state, simply follow the heating instructions below but  bake them for 8 minutes and then turn the oven off and  leave them in the oven for another 5-8 minutes until perfectly golden brown. So very, very good with soup on a Vermont winter’s night.

Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Cook Time: 10- 15 Minutes

Yields: 2 Dozen, 2″ inch biscuits

Ingredients

4 Cups Unbleached, All Purpose Flour, preferably King Arthur brand

4 teaspoons Original Bakewell Cream (NOT Bakewell Cream Baking Powder)

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup or 8 tablespoons cold butter

1 1/2 cups cold milk

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add butter and mix with a pastry blender, making sure that the mixture is crumbly, with some pea shaped and some coin like pieces of butter remaining. Pour in the milk and stir until the liquid is incorporated (add a little bit more milk if needed, if the mixture seems too dry). For tips about how to work with butter in flaky pastry, refer to the Fork on the Road blog for Whole Wheat Maple Scones.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape with your hands into a large, round disc. Then roll it or pat it out until it is 1/2″-3/4″ thick. Cut the biscuits with a round biscuit cutter or even the rim of a cup (I use a 2″ round cutter which yields a little more than two dozen biscuits – if your tool of choice is a square cutter then shape your dough into a rectangle to eliminate waste when cutting).

Bake at 475 degrees for five minutes. Then, leave the biscuits in the oven for an additional five to ten minutes or until they’re golden brown.

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Just a quick, festive salad idea to send you off towards the New Year feeling healthy and pleasantly nourished. May the next few weeks bring you peace, blessings, great food, even better memories – and perhaps a little snow.

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Mixed Greens with Pomegranate, Beet Wisps, and Fresh Herbs

I love this salad right around the holidays as it never fails to fill a bowl full of seasonal colors. People line up to serve themselves because it looks so festive and healthy with the glistening pomegranate seeds and beautiful variety of greens. The raw, shaved  beet wisps are also lovely,  adding a sweet and novel New England crunch to the dish. I’ve shared my favorite recipe for our homemade dressing but also think a pomegranate vinaigrette would be wonderful as well.

For the Salad:

2 ounces baby arugula ( about 2-3 cups)

2 small heads romaine hearts (cut into  bite sized pieces)

1/4 head radicchio (torn into bite sized pieces)

1/2 head red leaf lettuce (spines removed, torn into bite sized pieces)

1/8 lb raw red beet (about 1/4 small beet) shaved into “wisps” using a vegetable peeler

1/4 cup pomegranate seeds

a handful of chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

For the Vinaigrette:

1/8 cup Xeres vinegar

1/8 cup red wine vinegar

1 small shallot, minced

2 Tbs Dijon mustard

1 tsp honey

1/2 tsp kosher salt

a few grinds of freshly ground pepper

1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (depending on your preference)

To make your vinaigrette: In a medium-sized ball jar or bowl, combine the vinegars and shallots. Let this vinegar mixture “sit” for at five minutes (so that the vinegar has a chance to briefly marinate the shallots). Now add the mustard, honey, salt and pepper to the jar and mix well so that it is emulsified. Next pour in the oil (for a sharp dressing with a punch add 1/3 cup olive oil – for a mellower flavor, add up to 1/2 cup oil or even more…you be the judge).

For the Salad: In a big, beautiful bowl arrange your assortment of greens so they look fluffy and colorful. Sprinkle the beet shavings, pomegranate seeds, and parsley decoratively atop the lettuces. When you are ready to serve your salad, dress it with your homemade vinaigrette adding just enough so that the leaves are shiny and look full of flavor.

 

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We live up in the “North Country” of Vermont. Trees everywhere, a big river or two, some peaks and a few valleys. At this time of year, this all means cold days…and even colder nights. We keep our woodstove burning most all of the time between November and April and gather around it to stay toasty. As a result, we are a tangle of drying boots and mittens, homework, bodies, and cats and dogs for about six months of the year. It is a bit crowded but it’s also cozy. Baking helps to keep us snug, too.

So I’ve been baking a lot lately, trying to take the edge off.  It’s about 25 degrees as I write which provides pleny of incentive to stand by a warm oven. My attention has been focused on a particular scone I’ve been craving ever since tasting it on a hot Saturday morning at the farmers market back in July. It’s infused with flavors I associate with this area: maple, oats, and butter (but not too much).  The talented bakers at Bella Biscotti inspired me to figure it out – and judging from the long lines at their market stand, they’ve inspired many others as well – and I think I’ve finally got it.  The secret is in the maple glaze and in not making the actual scone itself too sweet or fatty. Technique is important here as well. Make sure to follow the directions in the recipe below for working the butter into the flour with your fingertips.

I hope you get a chance to enjoy these scones and their pure New England flavor in the festive weeks to come.  Or year-round, perhaps, and wherever you are – in a warm, sunny climate with a cupboard stocked with maple products from New England or up here in the North Country, with visions of sugar plums and snowstorms dancing in your heads and dreams of lush, green summer and vibrant farmers markets right around the corner (of the woodstove).

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A dusting of flour makes everything look better.

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Flour blended with visible “curls and coins” of butter, some prepped cubes of butter.

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A trip to the Christmas Tree Farm… with a batch of warm  scones packed for sustenance.

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Still Life with King Arthur Flour and Kitchen Aid.

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Whole Wheat Maple Oatmeal Scones

I’ve fallen in love with these scones and have baked them several times since I “cracked the code” on this perfect recipe. It used to be that I made scones using the paddle attachment of my Kitchen Aid so that I could produce them more quickly but I became a “slow scone”convert earlier this spring when I attended a bloggers workshop at King Athur Flour. It changed forever how I will mix them. For really flaky, tender morsels, you need to use your fingertips to work in the butter. Have fun getting your hands messy. These also make for a tasty gift. Oh, and I know – there’s white flour in the recipe.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 20 Minutes

Serves 12-18 (depending on the size cutter you use).

Ingredients

3/4 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup quick oats

1 Tbsp baking powder

2 Tbsp sugar

3/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup cold, unsalted butter (1 stick), cut into 32 cubes

1/4 cup buttermilk

1/4 cup maple syrup

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1 egg, beaten with a splash of water for egg wash

For the Glaze

1/2 cup + 1/8 cup confectioners sugar

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla exract

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the flours, oats, baking powder, sugar and salt. Now take half of the butter cubes (16 pieces) and cut them into the dry ingredients until they resemble coarse corn meal/pea sized pieces. Take the remaining 16 butter cubes and add them to the flour mixture. With the tips of your fingers, massage and press the butter pieces into the flour so they resemble coins or flat strips (the object  is to have the moisture in the “coins” of butter release steam into the dough when baked and create flaky layers in your pastry). Now combine the buttermilk, maple syrup and eggs and then quickly add them to the flour and butter. Mix until just blended.

Place the dough – it may be sticky- on a well- floured surface, making sure that it is combined. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough 3/4 to 1 inch thick. You should still see your “coins” of butter layered in the dough. Cut 1 1/2″ inch rounds out with a cutter (I prefer smaller scones as they are less filling and more delicate) and place them on your lined baking sheet.

Brush the tops with the egg wash. Bake for 15-20 minutes – until the tops are crisp and the insides done.

To Make the Glaze: Combine the confectioners sugar, maple syrup and vanilla. Let the baked scones cool for at least five minutes (they should be cool enough that they don’t melt the glaze) then drizzle each one with about 1 tablespoon of the glaze. For an extra pretty effect, sprinkle the top of the glazed scones with oat flakes.

One bowl. Two hands. Three cups of flour and a little patience. That’s practically all you need to make this rustic loaf of no knead bread that delivers a crunch and a perfect taste of Sunday morning. That and – of course –  a little cinnamon, salt, sugar, raisins, cranberries plus a sturdy pot that can withstand the blazing 450 degree temperatures of an oven for forty-five minutes.

The technique employed to make this country “boule” is inspired by Jim Lahey of New York’s Sullivan Street Bakery. He knocked the oven mitts off of home bakers back in 2006 when he introduced it – people were amazed that they could effortlessly create a loaf in their kitchen that practically rivaled the corner boulangerie in France. There is no kneading or fuss involved in this bread’s preparation, just the mixing of dry ingredients together with a cup and a half of water. The dough does all of the work on its own as it sits out on the counter overnight developing, rising, and even fermenting a wee little bit.

Eighteen hours later it is ready for your relaxed return. The soft, pliable mass only needs you to tip it out onto a floured surface to shape into a round before sending it off to the oven to bake to crispy, golden perfection. And you know what else? Besides being easy to make and delicious smeared with cream cheese or butter, it also makes for a lovely holiday present. Wrap it up, tie it with a bow and deliver it to neighbors or loved ones in a beautiful shiny gift bag. This week I’m doing just that: baking and sending an extra loaf to send to my oldest, a college girl out west who’s pining for a little taste of her Vermont home to land in her mailbox.

Effortless Homemade Cinnamon Raisin Cranberry Bread

Prep time: 20 minutes Total time: 13-24 (!) Hours

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour  (King Arthur Flour is best)

2 teaspoons salt (I prefer to use kosher salt in baking)

2 teaspoons sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon instant yeast (Saf Instant is wonderful)

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup sweetened, dried cranberries

1 1/2 cup water

Technique

Place flour, salt, sugar,  cinnamon and yeast in a large bowl and mix thoroughly. Now add raisins and cranberries and stir to incorporate.

Pour in the water and mix until the ingredients are thoroughly combined into what is known in the baking trade as a “shaggy mass.” It may look a little dry but don’t worry, it will be fine.

Cover your bowl with a piece of plastic wrap. Now let it sit on the countertop for 12 to 18 or even 24 hours (Confession: I have let it sit on the counter for up to a day with just excellent results).

After an adequate amount of time has elapsed (12 hours or more), place your dutch oven with the lid on it in a preheated 450 degree oven for 30 minutes. This step is essential as it gets the pot really hot before putting the dough in it and will cause a great crust to form.(Note: I have the best results when I use a 9″ Dutch Oven. The circumference seems just right to allow for a little extra height in the finished loaf).

While the pot is preheating, turn out your prepared dough onto a moderately floured surface (1/4 cup should suffice).With floured hands, shape your dough into a smooth ball, tucking the edges underneath to create a nice round. Invert your bowl and place it over the top of your prepared “boule” to prevent it from drying out while you wait for the  pot to finish pre-heating.

Now carefully remove the preheated pot from the oven, remove the lid and place them on a heat-resistant surface. Remove the bowl to reveal your shaped round.  Take a sharp knife or a bread slashing tool and score the top of your prepared dough (either in an “x” marks the spot design or a swirl or in three lines — or whatever shape strikes your fancy just as long as your cuts are about 1/8″ deep).

Taking care not to burn yourself, place the dough (scored side up) in the pot and cover with the lid. Bake covered for 25 minutes. Now remove the lid and bake for an additional 15 minutes. After 40 minutes it should be a beautiful golden brown and ready to remove from the oven (if you have a bread thermometer make sure it reads 190 degrees or higher).

Empty the loaf out onto a cooling rack and let it rest for at least half an hour before slicing. If you rush and cut into it, it won’t set correctly and will appear undercooked and gummy. But if you wait and are patient, it will be absolutely perfect!

I love rhubarb, how it has its own distinctive flavor and the fact that it looks like celery but  can be transformed into all sorts of delectable desserts. It’s tangy and tart, juicy with a bit of crunch, and it’s one of the first edible plants available in the springtime.

Sometimes I think we forget that rhubarb is capable of holding its own in a dish – that it doesn’t always need to be paired with strawberries (which aren’t in season here yet anyway) to create something sublime. And that’s the beauty of this Farmhouse Rhubarb Pie: the rhubarb speaks for iteself and retains a bit of  its tang even as it’s baked and set into a pillow of not-too-sweet creamy custard.

And everything is coming up rhubarb here right now. It’s bursting out of gardens and is piled high on tables at farmers markets. Often it draws blank stares from passersby, some might disregard it thinking of recipes in their collections that call for mighty doses of sugar to make this “vegetable” into a tasty, sweet dish. But this one’s different:  it’s a recipe that requires only one cup of sugar for the three cups of rhubarb that go into the filling.

This old fashioned pie recipe is not only just-right in the flavor department, but it’s versatile, too: capable of finding a home on many different tables. On the one hand, it seems like the kind of sweet treat that would be prepared in a farmhouse kitchen by a traditional grandmother, apron tied about her waist, hands dipping into the flower jar, experienced fingers dicing the rhubarb all while family members gather around the counter to listen to her kitchen wisdom and watch the art of pie making. But it also looks and tastes very contemporary, velvety and subtle, sophisticated, worthy of serving on an elegant china plate at a grown up spring gathering. Which is just what I did at a friend’s house last night. And there was none left to bring home.

Farmhouse Rhubarb Pie

A version of this special recipe was shared with me by a friend who grew up in the midwest. I like to imagine German and Norwegian settlers from there creating it, patiently stirring bowls of rhubarb with farm fresh sour cream and pressing the crust into heirloom tins. This is really very simple to assemble – no tricks or slights of hand required to roll out pastry, just the molding into a dish of a batch of a crumbly dough. If you have all of the ingredients laid out and ready to go, it can be easily prepped in under half an hour.

For the Crust:

1/2 cup butter, at room temperature (1 stick)

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 1/2 cup flour

For the Filling:

3 cups of rhubarb, minced (about 6 medium/large stalks)

3 eggs, beaten

1 cup of sugar

1/3 cup of sour cream

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon flour

a pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9-inch pie dish.

For the Crust: Cut the butter into eight pieces and place in a food processor along with the sugar, egg and 1/2 cup flour. Pulse 2-3 times to mix. Add the remaining 1 cup of flour and pulse until the mixture is crumby and staring to stick together.

Scrape the  crumby dough mixture into your prepared pie dish and, with your fingers, gently press it into place so that that it evenly covers the whole dish and forms the crust. Put the pie dish into the refrigerate and chill while you prepare the filling.

For the Pie Filling: In a large bowl, combine all of the filling ingredients and stir. Pour them into the prepared crust.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes and then turn down the oven to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 50 minutes (turning down the oven after 10 minutes prevents the edges of your crust from burning).

Let the pie cool for between 30 minutes and an hour before serving as this will make it easier to cut. This is best eaten the day it is baked  and accompanied by a dollop of vanilla ice cream. But it can also be refrigerated and served the next day.

Springtime in Vermont is the inspiration for this verdant, unintentionally vegan dish. Its colors and flavors mimic the experience of what it’s like to step out the back door right now. Yards and fields are alive with buds, blooms, and blades of grass – all exuberant and exploding in what seems like fifty shades of green – while the final bits of last year’s spent, yellowed stalks are making way for the summer palette and warm days ahead. It all has me thinking how we see in the natural world has a way of informing our internal cravings. This must explain why I’m thinking a lot about spinach and chick peas these days.

So, on the one hand there’s good old Mother Nature – and a bunch of nearby farms –  making me very hungry. But on the other, there’s a talented chef named Seamus Mullen whose cookbook Hero Food has found its way to my kitchen counter. Its recipes are luscious and the pictures appetizing. Mullen’s roots are here in Vermont but his primary culinary inspiration is the Catalan region of Spain – another place near and dear to my heart. He now runs the very successful, hopping Tertulia restaurant in New York and it’ll be the first place I visit next time I’m lucky enough to get to the City.

In the meantime, I feel like I’m getting a little taste of his cooking from the recipe below which is adapted from one in “Hero Food”. Mullen uses pea tendrils in his version but, as they say, “When nature gives you spinach, make a “Spring Baby Spinach Saute” (with a squeeze of lemon to finish it off).” That is what they say, isn’t it?

Spring Baby Spinach Saute with Chick Peas and Toasted Pine Nuts

Serves 4

I know pine nuts are expensive, but this recipe only calls for 1/4 cup of them, and their flavor makes such a difference in each bite of this dish. Don’t be tempted to substitute walnuts here because the results won’t be the same: the delicacy delivered from pine nuts is unique; each bite is full of a crunchy, buttery burst  from their addition. The golden raisins add a sweet and surprising balance to the dish and the fresh lemon juice squeezed over everything at the end make it taste just so fresh. The original recipe calls for pea tendrils, but since we’re bursting at the seams here in Vermont with spinach right now, it only seems right to use what is so plentiful.

1/4 cup pine nuts

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups of cooked chick peas (garbanzo beans), preferably organic

1/2 pound baby spinach

1/4 cup golden raisins

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Juice of 1/4  to 1/2 lemon

Place a large skillet over medium heat and add the pine nuts to the pan (do not add olive oil yet). Let the pine nuts slowly begin to brown, shaking the pan frequently to prevent burning. After about 2-3 minutes, once they’ve  lightly browned and smell nutty-buttery, add the olive oil, garlic and chick peas. Saute until the garlic begins to color. Toss in the spinach and raisins and cook, stirring, until the spinach just begins to wilt. Season generously with salt and pepper (remember: salt brings out the flavor in a dish!), drizzle with lemon juice and serve. This dish is lovely warm, at room temperature, and also served cold, as a snack. Though I enjoyed it with a salad on the side, this saute would make a perfect accompaniment to a simple roast chick with crusty baguette.

As a crepe maker by profession, I am frequently asked by people traveling to Paris if I have a favorite crêperie. My current answer would have to be “Yes, yes, yes, and yes. And they are all four quite delicious.”

You see, it all depends on your craving, what arrondissement you’re staying in or exploring, and on what you, the eater, are searching for in your perfect crêperie. There is no “best” place but there are four quite excellent ones. While visiting there last week, I did a little more culinary “research”. Below are the results.

And let it be noted that while many will tell you that it isn’t in Paris that you should be searching for crêpes – but instead in Brittany, the region where they actually originated many centuries ago, the equivalent in the United States might be hunting for Rhode Island Johnny Cakes in New York City –  you can still find an outrageously yummy “galette” (traditional buckwheat batter) or a “froment” (sweet white batter) in the City of Light.

I have chosen four wonderful crêperies in Paris to tell you about and divided them by “category” and location so that you know which one is right for your palate, for your sensibility, and for your location.

Hip, Cool, Haute Cuisine, “Tres Le Fooding” in the 3rd Arrondissemnt:

1)Breizh Cafe (109 Rue Vielle du Temple, 75003 Paris, Metro: St. Sebastien Froissard). This is the most sophisticated of good Paris crêperies: the fillings and flavors here are fresh, beautiful, artistically presented, and are truly haute cuisine. But perhaps best of all, their actual crêpes are technically perfect. Perhaps you would like to try “La Cancalaise” the galette I had (and loved) on my most recent visit there that was filled with smoked herring fillet, crème fraîche (from the artisinal “Bordier” Farm), and garnished with herring eggs in “le façon caviar” (11.80 Euros). Or maybe you would be tempted by “Le Maraichere” as I was, a galette filled with vegetables fresh from market, a perfectly fried egg (un oeuf mirroir) and Emmental cheese. You can’t go wrong with anything you chose here, as everything practically floats off the plate. The sweet crepes are transluscent and enticing topped with a salty caramel drizzle or browned bananas and vanilla ice cream, among many others.   The name “Breizh”- not seemingly very French-  actually means “Brittany” in the ancient language of that region. There are both well groomed regulars and tourists here, the staff works together like clockwork, although they can be un peu “snooty” if pressed.

Reservations are highly recommended or you will have to wait at both lunchtime and dinnertime. Believe me.

Traditional, Bustling, Down Home Style, Old French Feeling in the 14th Arrondissement:

2)Le Crêperie de Josselin (67 Rue due Montparnasse, 75014 Paris, Metro: Edgar Quintet). With lace draped over its light fixtures and dark wood paneling adding to its old Breton-style atmosphere (and I speak from experience having studied my trade in Brittany and also once having spent a very fun overnight there with my children at a crêperie dating back to the 15th century), the crêpes here are authentic, hearty and delicious. You won’t find fancy, modern, interpretive fillings here but what you will find is delectable crêpes done in a very traditonal way. The crêpes are served in “couples” which means that the batter is poured and topped with fillings and then another already made crêpe is layered on top before folding it into a neat package and  delivering it hot to your table. When I asked the waitress why this is done, she answered simply “C’est mieux.”  I later learned that this is traditonal in one certain area of Brittany. But back to the crêpes: my lovely lunchtime comibination was filled with an eggplant puree and topped with a fried egg and strips of bacon. Dessert was a white crêpe “couple” filled with syrupy housemade strawberry preserves. Incroyable – and affordable. If you’re wondering why this creperie is so far out (in the 14th) it’s because it is close to Montparnasse train station, which is where the trains from Brittany arrive and decades ago brought waves of immigrants from that region who then started crêperies upon their arrival in Paris.

Tres Lowkey Vibe, Interesting Building, Groovy Tunes, Perfectly Crisp Galettes in the 11th Arrondissement:

West Country Girl (6 Passage Saint Ambroise Paris 75011, Metro: Oberkampf). Look for the red neon arrow as you round the corner onto Passage Saint Ambroise in search of this little gem of a crêperie. You might think you are mistaken in your search because this is such an unassuming, residential neighborhood but keep calm and carry on. This eatery sports a simple but chic decor with hip light fixtures, white walls, and cement floors that all come together to create a very pleasing, artsy atmosphere. But once again, it is the crêpes that make this a destination. Mine was sublime, a crispy galette that held within its expert folds a delicious combination of fresh goat cheese (origin St. Maure), nutmeg and cream-infused spinach, with a just-so scattering of golden raisins. I truly could have eaten ten of these. There are many other enticing combinations on the menu such as mushrooms, goat cheese and chives or brie, bacon and nuts. Desserts were simple and thin with offerings of caramel, butter, and vanilla. It doesn’t get better than this.  These are some of the thinnest, most artisinal galettes in Paris and they harken from the region known as Finistère which marks the very western point of France. If you are in this somewhat eastern part of Paris, make a trip here. Just look for the red arrow.

For a Marine Motif, A Casual Atmosphere, and a Lovely Neighborhood Environment in the 5th Arrondissement:

Le Pot o Lait (41 Rue Censier, Paris 75005, Metro: Censier-Daubenton).This crêperie, more than any of the others, gives off a seashore vibe with it’s blue-themed decor that encourages diners to think of the northern French shores where crêpes were born. So it is this little piece of the beach with a view of a medieval church in the midst of a bustling 5eme that sets the stage for your crêpe. “La Fermiere”, my choice, is served with roasted red peppers and cheese folded inside the crêpe and then topped with a mixed green salad and herbs. For those who have never enjoyed lettuce on top of a crêpe, try this. A thin,warm buckwheat pancake truly compliments and cradles crisp, fresh greens. This is clearly another favorite local eatery that’s humming with children early in the evening. If pressed, I would say that their crêpes are  maybe not technically perfect (perhaps not enough salt in the batter or a tad too much oil brushed on the griddle?) but that is more than made up for by the restaurant’s lovely spot, fun menu, jovial atmosphere and excellent service.

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