The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

I ate a lot last week (part 1 of 2)

[Once again, I have to do this "splitting the entry into more than one part" thing since it was just getting way too long and as much as I would like to keep writing, I'm sure you want to actually stay awake through the whole entry. As would I. But it ain't happening. I'll leave comments open, but I'd be more inclined to respond to comments on the second part...whenever I get around to writing it.]

meats of various cook-ness at Le Trumilou

Le Trumilou
Le Trumilou

While walking along quai de l'Hôtel de Ville last Monday night at 7 PM, I noticed that it was a bit...dead. People just don't eat that early in Paris. Well, well, my American stomach isn't used to eating dinner at 9 PM yet.

mm, dusty

Due to the lack of humans and Le Trumilou, Amy and I killed some time at Bistrot Marguerite with some ...ahem, potent potables. Actually, I had a hot chocolate and she had a beer; I just really wanted to say "potent potables".

After ingesting out tasty liquids and shooting the shizz about life and stuffs (if English isn't your first language, I apologize for frequently going into non-grammatically-correct lapses) like all good bloggers do when meeting for the first time, we returned to Le Trumilou for excessive fooding.

canard aux pruneaux
canard aux pruneaux

The restaurant's specialty, canard aux pruneaux (duck-n-prunes), isn't all that photogenic. But tasty food doesn't have to look beautiful. I find things that come in huge metal bucket-like containers to be more appealing than weeny dainty bite-sized foodstuffs. "It comes in a silver vat! IT MUST BE SOOO GOOD." Toss a few ginormous duck chunks (a leg and [insert another major meaty part]) that may have been tenderized by the delicate hands of elves (probably not, but you don't know for sure) in some slightly viscous, deep brown, prune-sweetened sauce and add a bunch of ...prunes. VOILA! It's yummy. The French preparation of duck beats all others in my mind. Fat. And meat. In perfect harmony.

steak tartare fries!
steak tartare and frites

Amy went with steak tartare and frites. I'm also a fan of raw, mashed up seasoned beef. Really! It's tasty, perhaps comparable to spicy tuna if that means anythign to you. But it's better than spicy tuna because IT COMES WITH FRITES! Amy said that if you finish your frites, they may refill your plate. God knows how anyone could finish off the plate, but it's nice to know the option of neverending frite consumption exists.

Les oeufs à la neige
Les oeufs à la neige

We topped off our meat-filled bellies with mutiple desserts. I ordered les oeufs à la neige, also known as ile flottante, also known as floating island, also known as, "It tastes like mucus," in the words of Sophie. A meringue blob sitting in a pool of crème anglaise isn't something I can imagine craving in the middle of the night, but it's tasty...if you like meringue and crème anglaise. I'm more of a fan of crème anglaise than meringue and suspect that someone thought it would look too weird to eat crème anglaise on its own (hey, I've done it, which probably labels it as "abnormal"), so they added the meringue to make it look more substantial and provide a good vehicle with which to eat the crème anglaise with. Whatever, I'm down with that. UPDATE: As Arnaud has noted in the comments, the meringue is there to use up the egg whites left over from making the crème anglaise. Oh duh [slaps self in forehead].

poire belle-hélène
Poire belle-hélène

Amy made an excellent choice with the poire belle-hélène, a dessert that is kind of like an ice cream sundae like none I had ever eaten before. Slices of poached pear lie at the bottom of the bowl topped with vanilla ice cream, dark chocolate sauce, crème anglaise (methinks?), whipped cream and a sprinkling of almond slivers. So damn good. I have to order it again the next time I see it. Two gavottes, delicate crispy rolls of sweet nanometer-thick cookie, came on the side and I couldn't help but buy a box of them the next day.

Amy unfortunately got a bit of a stomach malfunction from the meal, but I hope she felt that it was worth it. I must thank her for the great company, restaurant recommendation, and bout with indigestion. Hopefully that won't keep her from eating with me again. :)

creping time!

crepe ingredients
ingredients at a crepe stand

Despite that Paris is overly populated with crepe stands and crepe restaurants, I've rarely eaten crepes. My heart has been stolen and fattened by patisseries and boulangeries. But France doesn't just live on cakes and bread (and duck...can't forget about duck); they also have thin bass drum-sized golden pancake-ish things filled with all kinds of edible goodies, primarily spread-able and made of glucose. I was happy when Yann (my first real French eating buddy, weehee!) suggested we go to La Creperie du Clown upon my request to eat out last Thursday.

potato, cheese and onion galette
potato, cheese and onion galette

While I could've happily eaten a banana and nutella crepe for dinner, I started my meal with a potato, cheese and onion galette. It resembled a spotted, brown, bloated ...thingy. Because that's what it kinda is. What else can I say; it ain't a looker. I know just how it feels.


But it's what's inside that counts! Especially if you have bountiful cheesy onion and potato innards! (Sadly, my innards are just organs, blood and bones. No wonder nobody loves me.) I can't think of any reason to object to the combination of soft potato chunks and onion held together by warm gooey cheese. My belly was quite happy.

ham and egg galette
egg ham-ness

Yann's galette was considerably less bloaty than mine, which probably meant he was less bloated after eating it. I'd say that it can't compare to my CHEESY ONION POTATO BOMB, but he would happily forgo my football-sized galette since he's not into the cheese-onion-potato combination. Ah well, his loss!

dessert crepe banana, ice cream and whipped cream

We each ordered a dessert crepe to keep our meal balanced (and by balanced I mean savory and sweet; I ain't talking 'bout no food pyramid). I don't know what to say about these besides that they were alright. Needed more sugar, maybe. Surprisingly as one who believes that dessert is the core part of the meal, I preferred my galette to my banana and vanilla ice cream crepe!

dessert crepe
mm, mountain of whipped dairy product

Our neighbors' dessert crepe looked more appetizing with its tall mountain of whipped cream drizzled with a bit-o chocolate sauce. And no, I did not invade upon our neighbors' space; they recognized me! Holy crap! Amanda and Shawn (if either of you are reading this, please forgive me if I got your names wrong), two Bostonians on vacation in paris, were familiar with my blog, or at least Amanda was. The point of recognition seemed to come when I whipped out my Canon Rebel before there was even any food on the table. I'm a bit too conspicious. :)

Eating out with Yann was a lot of fun, especially since he knew loads more about French food and customs than I did. (Such as the pairing of slightly alcoholic apple cider with crepes.) Running into Amanda and Shawn was a happy surprise, besides being a really weird coincidence that we happened to go to the same restaurant at the same time and sit next to each other. Remember when a girl spotted me in a Norwegian shopping center? I guess it'd be a better story if we had contact, but if I were her I probably wouldn't come up to me either.

...I'm very approachable though! I think. I mean, if you're already familiar with my blog, it doesn't get a whole lot weirder than that.

oh my god, the meats

La Table du Perigord
La Table du Perigord

Last Friday I ate dinner at La Table du Perigord with Janice, a Malaysian woman who has been living in Paris with her husband and kids for 16 years. (If she had a blog I would link to it instead of telling her life story in one sentence, hehe.) She suggested a restaurant to satisfy our cassoulet craving with and I gleefully hopped into the prospect of devouring a vat filled with hearty meat-and-bean-tastic stew.

bread, water and wine appetizer thingy
stuff that comes before the REAL FOOD

Before the main course, we unecessarily chomped on baguette chunks and a complementary appetizer type thingy of creamy tuna salad and crusy bread slices. You know, the toast things that resemble giant croutons (because that's what they are). Nothing wrong with them; I just prefer fresh bread. I liked the tuna salad spread, although I can't describe it much more than that. Sorry, I AM USELESS.

cassoulet for two
vat of meat!

And then came the cassoulet (two orders in one dish) in all its excessively meaty glory—duck breast, duck leg, pork and sausage to be exact. The duck confit was easily the meat to put all other meats to shame; I'm not much of a sausage fan and the pork was sadly overdone. But there was more than enough meat and white beans (remember, baby angels!) for both of us. We managed to eat about 2/3rds before reaching the state of meat coma since this dish is probably better suited for people who need to sustain a life of hard, physical calorie-burning labor and not two fairly small Chinese women. However, I continued to sop up the soup with my bread and mindlessly chomp on my carb-based liqui-meat sponge because it would've been wrong to not marry the bread and soup.

creme brulee chocolate cake
creme brulee and chocolate cake

By now you should know that there's always room for dessert, despite how many different kinds of animals we may ingest. Janice's creme brulee looked good (how could it be bad?), but my chocolate cake seemed a bit iffy even before I tried it. And then I did. And it was still...iffy. Janice didn't like it and said I didn't have to eat it if it didn't make my tummy gurgle with happy muscle spasms, but I figured that I may as well eat it since it wasn't totally unenjoyable.

However, I realized that something was wrong with it when I got home and remembered what it reminded me of. A brownie gone horribly wrong. I 'm not refering to brownies in general; I mean that I actually had the experience and thus the sensory memory of eating a brownie recipe gone awry. The result was something flat and lacking in sweetness with an odd texture that didn't quite resemble a cake or a brownie...or anything else for that matter. While my chocolate cake wasn't as bad as that, it was reminiscent of "the brownie that gone done wrong". Janice was right in suggesting that I didn't finish it. WHY DOESN'T MY STOMACH LISTEN?!

Janice and I will certainly be eating again. Next stop: AWESOME DESSERTS!

I'm bad at heartfelt remarks

I must say that I am very lucky and thankful to have met so many cool, unique, food-happy people through the blogging world who have been willing to open up their stomachs and knowledge of all things French or edible to my weenie American mind. I'll overlook the massive weight gain that inevitably comes from participating in indulgent meals with good company.

..But if I become obese, I'm blaming it on you guys.


Le Trumilou
84, quai de l'Hôtel de Ville, 4th
Metro: Hotel de Ville (1), Pont Marie (7)

Creperie du Clown
6, rue des Canettes, 6th
Metro: Mabillon (10), Saint Germain des Pres (4)

La Table du Perigord
13 rue de Mézières, 6th
Metro: Saint-Sulpice (4)


Mickjagger / November 15, 2006 12:45 AM

He he now you really have an excuse to try some crepe with ice cream, banana, chantilly AND chocolate next time... or the classic caramel crepe after a BIG galette!
That entry was cool, thanks for the nice comments :)
And later blame french for obesity, yay! But we don't have Thanksgiving, that helps a lot before Christmas... :p

Arnaud / November 15, 2006 12:51 AM

Come on Robyn, you mean you don't know why crème anglaise usually goes with meringue? There's always a very practical reason... It's to use up all those leftover egg whites from the crème anglaise of course!

Remember that most traditional French food was devised by farmers, in a time when people would never dream of wasting even half an egg...

roboppy / November 15, 2006 1:00 AM

Yann: Oh my god I want a caramel one! Or the other one with a million toppings.

Mmm, Thanksgiving, harbinger of food comas across the nation. It's so tasty!

Arnaud: Oh man you are SO RIGHT.

[embarrassingly hides in a hole or something else that will shield me from public view, which is difficult when you have a blog...oops]

Well I suppose that's better than when you have a animal with too many meat parts and you don't know how to use em all up so you just toss em in a pot and voila, you have ...something edible.

Kaitlin Hess / November 15, 2006 5:16 AM

Oh RObyn,
I am just waiting and anxious to see what kind of THANKSGIVING feast you are going to have IN FRANCE!

amy / November 15, 2006 10:29 AM

Actually, looking at those pictures is making me want tartare again. But at least I'm going out for cassoulet today!

And yeah, I suspect the main point of meringue is to suck up creme anglaise. But that's cool with me -- I like my desserts light and fluffy.

MGC / November 15, 2006 11:44 AM

Although this is not an undying declaration of appreciation for your commitment to provide your readers a few minutes of solid tummy-grumbling envy every day, despite the fatness that must come with it, please read on (i'll get to the adulation later):

How is it that your pictures still look increadibly natural even after they've been tweaked by Photoshop? How exactly do you tweak them?


roboppy / November 15, 2006 12:24 PM

Kaitlin: We're going to have "International Night", I think...just invite a bunch of people for some grub. :) But it will involve turkey!

Amy: I WANT TARTARE! But that duck distracted me! Mrah!

Ooh yes, meringue is a good creme anglaise sponge.

MGC: I get this question a lot and should probably put it in my "about" page..but for now I'll just post it here. Here are my tweaking non-secrets! Through the magic of adjustment layers:

- levels
- curves
- selective color
- maybe saturation

...Okay, that it. Anyhoo, I adjust them to my..liking. That's kind of vague. If you REALLY wanted to see, I could sent you a psd example of a photo and the layers I use.

Thanks for the love!

The Man of a Thousand Names / November 15, 2006 2:08 PM

Your posts are getting better, your food looks better, you look happier, may I eat you?

This all looks amazing, and now my list of things to eat before I die (or it goes extinct) has had the following added:
Cassoulet (holy mother of meat!)
Duck in Prunes

I'll look for recipes. Can't afford to go to Paris again so soon, better off maing the stuff myself. Can you ask the chefs where you eat for me?

Pretty please?
With sprinkles?
With sprinkles and sugar?
With sprinkles, sugar and chocolate sauce?

redrhino / November 15, 2006 2:44 PM

[quote]...but I'd be more inclined to REPOND to comments on the second part [/quote]



Points and Laughs.



roboppy / November 15, 2006 2:50 PM

Morty mort: You want to EAT ME? Or eat WITH me? There's a difference.

You can't eat me. My fat content would kill you anyhoo.

The internet knows everything! Surely you can find a recipe. Or maybe I can find a nice French cook book for ye. :)

red: That's what I get for not having an editor. :( And maybe getting 5 hours of sleep a night. (Yeah, I'm too lazy to use spell check.)

And apparently, I am likely to REPOND to these comments.

(Repondre is the verb for "to answer" in French. We can pretend that I am subconsciously writing in French.)

susannah / November 15, 2006 6:32 PM

Mmmm . . crepes. I am so jealous . . my favorite kind is nutella, strawberries, and whipped crea, but then again, put nutella on anything and you're golden. That gallette looked interesting! I've never seen anything like it before. For a second I confused with word gallette with the word gaufre, which I ate in Belgium, and is the very best kind of waffle. ::sigh::

Beautiful cassoulet pictures =) You sure like that duck, huh??

ed / November 15, 2006 8:27 PM

that friend of yours is a girl after my own heart...
drinking beer while your friends drink hot chocolate!!! i dont know her, but she's already on my cool list. XD

Lea / November 15, 2006 10:32 PM

oohhh my.

I am having foodgasms.

Those crepes look sooooo friggin good. 'Specially that egg and hammy one.... ooohhhh...mmmm. Ehhem.

Annie / November 16, 2006 1:12 AM

It's like a Disney/Food Channel movie: Robyn is just an average girl, EXCEPT SHE GETS RECOGNIZED ALL OVER THE WORLD FOR HER PRIZE-WINNING FOOD BLOG. Now humble yourself out of that one, girlie.

Tartare. In Amsterdam in 1979 they sold small sandwiches on street corners. The sandwiches were called "broodjes" and my favorite was a broodje tartare which, sure enough, was a bit of raw chopped beef garnished with onions. I adored those broodjes as well as the fact that the broodjes cart also sold "frites met mayonnaise". This was entirely too strange for expatriate American youth of the late 70's; I had people leave me on the streetcorners (or try to dump me in the canal) for my "disgusting" eating habits. But it certainly tasted good.

Lustful Eater / November 16, 2006 1:25 AM

I want to eat you! You're looking better every day. A nice Robyn-kebab with tartarsauce. MMMmm.

Oh, and I'd like a nice French cookbook in English (or Nowegian) if that's okay. They have that? Thank you :)

roboppy / November 16, 2006 1:53 AM

Adalmin: I kind of wonder what human tastes like. ...Ok maybe not.

Susannah: I'd just go to nutella. Don't need fruit! JUST CHOCOLATE GOO.

Yeah, I do like zee duck. Why is it so damn tasty?

ed: But people who like hot chocolate are cool too, right?

Lea: I shall have more crepe action to torture you with in the future. Bwahahaa!

Annie: That's one of the Disney Channel's low rated shows right?

Ahh, it's just weird coincidences, I swearz!

Those sammiches sound tasty. Brewedgees. Haha. God of course that's not how you say it. Damn, you make me wanna go to Amsterdam.

Mortmort: Eww I FEEL VIOLATED!@#!@

English or weegie? or FRENCH? I feel like a good one would probably be in French, but I'll see what I can get. :)

Tina / November 16, 2006 2:53 AM

Who wouldn't just eat crème anglaise straight up? At least I don't mind doing that amongst a ton of other things I would eat straight out of a jar like Nutella.

Ah, you're a celebrity in the food blog world. I bow down to your for my unworthiness. *bows, bows*

Janice / November 16, 2006 2:27 PM

Since you like duck meat, if you have not eaten "Magret de Canard" before, you should give it a try. I like it panfried with a green pepper sauce.

Did you drink cider with your crepe?

Tiggy / November 16, 2006 5:20 PM

Hi Robyn,

Apparently, we taste like Spam. My ancient father sailed around in the merchant marines in his youth, and sometime after WWII, he was in the South Seas. Where he met a lovely ancient island man. Who said "Oh, we don't do that anymore" when Daddy asked him about the whole eating people thing. So of course, Daddy asked him about the meat that knows no recipe, and he said we taste like...Spam.

On that note...I love your blog!!


Jess / November 16, 2006 6:03 PM

Hi! I've been really enjoying reading about your adventures in Paris (and living vicariously through your writing, of course!). Thank you so much for sharing with us! Just wanted to let you know -- in case anyone might be looking it up -- I snooped around to find a Web site for La creperie du clown, and I just wanted to let you know that it seems to be called La crepe rit du clown. Oh, le clever :)

roboppy / November 16, 2006 7:11 PM

Tina: Straight up is the way to go. When I prepared it in my cooking class, I practically drank it out of a cup. Mm.

Nono you're totally worthy! If I can order you to do anything, it's not to bow! HAHAHA!

one girl: I'm in a food coma too! Awesome!

Janice: Oo I don't think I've had that before. OMG GIMMEH.

Yes, we had cider! I didn't include all my photos in the post (ooh, evil), but I linked to it. :)

Tiggy: SPAM? ...Whoa that is so disturbing considering what Spam is made of.

Perhaps I will try some spam.

Jess: Thanks for reading! I didn't include my photo of the exterior, but the restaurant changed its name and facade:

La Creperie du Clown

So we should get the new name out there, perhaps? ;)

Rhi / November 16, 2006 7:57 PM

Your savoury crepe reminded me of burek, though less on the pastry end. I need to make crepes again; Joy of Cooking and Nigella both say they freeze well enough, and once you've got the hang, they're not hard.

Lustfull Eater / November 16, 2006 9:43 PM

Just so you know; I'm kinda kidding about the cookbook. I think it's more likely that I'll find a decent or good french cookbook (I already have Larousse Gastronomique) in Weegie or Benglish in Norway than in France :p

Oh, you sure look tasty. Tastyyyy...slurp, slurp...BITE!

susannah / November 17, 2006 1:05 AM

by the way, I am so on your side when it comes to hot chocolate vs. beer =) ALLLLLWAYS goin' wit the chocs . .

I remember liking duck before I was a vegetarian, although I rarely had it, maybe once or twice, somewhere fancy. In france they seem to eat what we consider complex or fancy food very normally.


(do you see where I'm going here? your pictures drive me crazy and make me want to dine with you, due to our similair never-ending stomach space, which no one here shares with me.)

roboppy / November 17, 2006 1:49 PM

Rhi: I've never made crepes before. :\ I kinda helped a friend make crepes once...and those came out interesting. Ha ha. They were oddly greasy (still tasty though).

Mort: Ahh I'll find SOMETHING awesome for ye. Maybe. I've done absolutely noooo gift shopping yet, while some of my friends seemd to have ALREADY FINISHED THEIRS.

Mona: Those will be in the next entry!

Susannah: There is no contest between beer and chocolate.

I don't think I grew up with good duck or something. Or maybe I don't like the way the Chinese prepare it. There's so much duck here..oh man...

..and chocolate. So many beautiful chocolatiers here. ARghrhgr.

It might be best for your health if you don't find a mega-huge-stomached person like me. I think I'm taxing my digestive system too much! :( (But eating with other people means you can try twice as many things. Mmm.)

Irene: Unfortunately, I don't know much about crepes in NYC. :\ They're not one of my favorite foods, but they're freakin' EVERYWHERE here, so it's hard to ignore. When I go back to NYC I'll probably search for a good creperie, hehe. (Or I'll check out that one in Chinatown again that has the funky fillings.)

Lisa / December 12, 2006 5:16 AM

Hi there - I just discovered your foodblog today while perusing pics of Jacques Torres Chocolate on the web (I'm the Cookie Bitch there - in charge of the baking) - Just wanted to tell you I LOVE your blog! I've been in NYC a year and have also been eating my way through the city - also spent a year eating my way through Paris, as well, so your blog entries are making my very nostalgic, siiiigh... Thanks for a very entertaining and delicious blog - let me know if you want a tour of the shop some time!

Isabela Garcia / January 3, 2008 9:22 AM

oh my gosh!!! just think people all of that food!!! it sounds to me like a FEAST!!! it's so yummy for my tummy!!! i'm getting hungry just thinking about it! to bad we don't have yummy food like that in America!!! on tiny problem though. you mean to tell me that there is no yummy chocolate in France??? i mean seriously!!! no CHOCOLATE???!!! oh well annyways, i'm going to read your story again then i'm going to go see if i can find that yummy food in any of the stores...oh and i'm going to look for a Hershey Bar! because i'm craving food and chocolate! next time my family and i go on vacation...we're DEFINETLY going to France! i want to try that yummy food! especially that duck! mmmm never tried it before! :drool: *GROWWWWLLLL* that was my hungry tummy! gotta go! *GROWWWWLLLL* oh yes by the way was the yummy duck roasted or not? *GROWWWWLLLL* well i'm going to feed my hungry tummy something yummy now! :drool: excuse me i'm getting drool all over the keyboard! *GROWWWWLLLL* bye and thanks for the delicious yummy story even though the pictures were yummier! *GROWWWWLLLL*

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