My favorites (part 2)

Hello dear reader,

I hope you have survived the beginning of the week well. I also hope that it’s sunny there where you are, unlike here in Paris where the spring hasn’t been like a spring at all.

That also means that, there really haven’t been too many opportunities to enjoy the sun in a café (or to even go to one to take pictures). But last Sunday when I was walking around with a friend, the sun finally came out of hiding. And luckily, we were close to a place called The Smiths Bakery.

If you like éclairs (is there anyone who doesn’t?!), then I bet you’d like The Smiths… Because, in my opinion: they serve the best éclair in this town called Paris.

OK, so, I haven’t been to literally every single bakery or café in here, but still. I am ready to say that the one from The Smiths is the best.

You want proof?

Well, it’s a milk-chocolate and hazelnut éclair. And, there really is enough of delicious milk-chocolate and enough of crispy hazelnuts. Also, the éclair is very pretty. Much prettier than your average éclair.

But the downside, after discovering this magnificent éclair, nothing else will do.

They also serve breakfast and lunch but to be honest with you, the only thing I’ve ever eaten there and the only thing I’ll ever eat there, that’s the éclair noisette.

The Smiths Bakery

12 Rue de Buci 75006 Paris, France
Open 9h-00h30 everyday.

Metro: Mabillon

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P.S. If you have an endless craving for sweet things, the best gelato in Paris, Grom, is very near.

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Walking around (part 8)

Hi there dear whoever you are,

I hope your week has been a nice one and you’re all ready for the weekend to kick in.

Here in Paris the spring has shown her rainy side far too many times for my liking. And let me tell you, trying to dry soaking wet shoes (espadrilles aren’t the best shoes for a rainy day) in an already moist parisian apartment… Not very succesful.

So, walking around in Paris during the past few weeks has mainly been about holding your umbrella, not your camera. Luckily, I have been collecting photos of street art pieces that have caught my eye.

Street art is funny because when you just take photos of the piece and not the surroundings, you couldn’t really guess where where in the worlds the photos are taken. Well, except for these ones that I took because one of them is actually an old add that even tells you the name of the street.

I hope you’ll enjoy these!

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Walking around (part 7)

Happy Monday,

I hope you are well.

It’s raining here in Paris but because I have to spent today sitting in front of the computer, I really don’t mind.

I’ve been wanting to make a video post for a while now but haven’t gotten around to it. That is mostly because I hardly ever take my camera with me when I’m actually walking around. Then I realized that I have all these tiny Vine clips that I could maybe put together to practice. And so I did.

The clips are miscellaneous little moment from the past few months so unlike the other Walking around posts, this video is not from a certain day.

The quality of the video really isn’t the greatest but I hope it’ll give you a glimpse of Paris.

That and a sweet song probably won’t do any harm on a Monday.

I hope to continue doing videos with a better quality soon.

Until then, have a lovely day.

My favorites (part 1)

Hi again,

hope you are still well.

Me, today everyday I’m lazy. Apparently all the essays that I should be writing are in fact encouraging me to update this little blog. Funny, how inspiration often works that way.

Again, this is something that I’ve thought to post for a while already. But haven’t.

I thought that it’d be fun to collect a few favorites from Paris (and maybe later from Helsinki too). Obviously most of the places I like, are places other people like too and thus, are places you may have already stumbled upon on the ever-growing internet.

But I decided I wouldn’t let that bother me. Mainly, because at least these little posts will bring joy to me. Also, they’ll be an easy way to tell friends my go-to places in this lovelylovely city.

This coffee shop in rue du Cardinal Lemoine (that’s in the 5th arrondissement) is quite close to the university, so it has been a perfect place for friday afternoon coffees and cupcakes. Also, it’s very near to rue Mouffetard, a street full of adorable and delicious food shops.

The name of the place is as sweet as the treats they serve: Sugarplum Cake Shop. Also, the name makes the place a very suitable first favorites -post, don’t you think?

Their coffee is good, which is most important. I’m serious here. With a bad cup of coffee, the cake gets ruined too. They also serve filtered coffee (this is something I sometimes miss from home).

My very favorite cupcake is the coffee one. And if you didn’t have time for lunch, no worries, after their cheesecake you’ll survive easily until dinner.

Sugarplum Cake Shop

68 rue du Cardinal Lemoine 75005 Paris

Closed on Monday. Open 12h-19h (Tuesday-Sunday).

Metro: Cardinal Lemoine or Place Monge.

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À bientôt !

There’s a first time for everything aka cupcakes from a mix

Hi there,

I hope the spring has arrived to there where you are.

Here in Paris spring is acting like a true lady and changing her mind every other day about whether to make an entrance or not. Well, we had a few very nice days here so I shouldn’t complain but still… Spring please come to stay!

For a while a go I did something I’ve never done before: I made cupcakes from a mix.

I needed to bring something to an apéro a friend was hosting. Because I knew there’d be many people I don’t know I decided to bake. That’s always a good idea, right? But, I then realized that I maybe shouldn’t buy everything I need for baking to this tiny apartment of mine. And so, I went for a cupcake-mix.

You can probably guess I was a tad skeptical about how cupcakes made from a mix would taste. But, at least with the chocolate I used (milk-chocolate and toffee) the cupcakes turned out very good.

So sometimes it’s good to not take baking so seriously and remember that cupcakes are a great way to make new friends at a party. Never mind you didn’t make them from scratch. Sometimes you’ll just need some good chocolate and pretty cupcake cases.

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Bought these pretty cases from BonTon, one of my favorite stores here in Paris.

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The cupcake mix was from Hema.

The chocolate I used was Milka's toffee bubble.

The chocolate I used was Milka’s toffee bubble.

My tiny combination owen baked seven cupcakes a time.

My tiny combination owen baked seven cupcakes a time.

And I was a bit surprised that the owen actually baked the cupcakes.

And I was a bit surprised that the owen actually baked the cupcakes.

P.S Using A LOT of that good chocolate to the cupcakes doesn’t hurt, it never does.

Walking around (part 6)

Hi there,

I hope monday has been good to you this far (and for the rest of the day too).

Here in Paris mondays seem to be slow and apparently I’m adjusting to that quite well. I may or may not still be drinking my morning coffee, in my pyjamas.

Again, it’s been a while since my last post but like I wrote on the last post, time here in Paris flies.

A few weeks ago I tested whether time would go quick or slow in Belgium. I dear friend of mine lives in Ghent, a lovely town not too far from Brussels (Well, Belgium is quite small so anything isn’t too far from Brussels). Unfortunately the spring hasn’t understood that her job has already started and thus the weather in Ghent wasn’t any more springy as in Paris.

But, Ghent (and the belgian waffles and chocolates) were still lovely.

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See you soon dear reader.

Goat Cheese Pie

Hi you,

I hope you are well.

It’s been a while. Apparently time here in Paris flies. I hope you don’t mind.

I have every intention of keeping this little blog of mine alive but as the spring approaches I assume that I will be spending less time inside in front of my computer and more time outside.

Well, enough with making excuses, let’s start making pie.

You might already know I really like pie. If you didn’t… Well, I really do.

Making pie is easy and fast. And with a simple salad, a savory pie is easily one of my favorite things to eat (if we don’t count things that include sugar).

Let’s bake, I say.

Goat Cheese Pie

Crust:

2,5 dl melted butter

1 small potato/ 50 g of mashed potato powder

0,5 dl oats

About 2 dl flour

3 tablespoons cold water

Filling:

1 onion

1 red pepper

2 dl cream

150 g grated cheese (I used emmental)

2 eggs

200 g goat cheese

First you make the crust.

Mix together everything but water together. If the doug seems a bit dry, add few spoons of water. If not, add a bit more flour first and then water. Again, mix.

Then press the dough into an oiled pie pan.

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Then do the filling by mixing everything together. But do leave about half of the goat cheese out, so you can use it to sort of decorate the pie.

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Pour the filling on top of the crust. The cut the rest of the goat cheese into thin slices that you then place on top of the pie.

Bake in 200 Celsius/ 390 Fahrenheit for about 35 minutes.

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Serve with green salad with balsamic vinegar dressing. (And if it’s friday, I’d have a glass of rosé too.)

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Enjoy!

Walking around (part 5)

Hello you,

I hope your sunday was lovely and you did something fun.

I went to the market today. They have one located in boulevard Richard Lenoir (near Bastille, if you happen to come to Paris) every sunday.

And oh boy… I ended up buying a few things like green beans and Brussels sprouts and strawberries and avocados. Which were all quite a bit cheaper than in a super market.

The list of things I could’ve bought is much easier to show than write…

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Next sunday, I’ll be wiser and have a shopping list with me.

Good night, thank you for stopping by.

Walking around (part 4)

Hello you,

I hope your sunday has been lovely.

Mine was. I had brunch. (These two things have clear a connection.)

The weather how ever was not that lovely. I love snow but sleet… No thank you.

So considering the weather today I was pretty pleased that I had gone on a walk with my camera on saturday. The sun shined on saturday and though it was a bit colder than on most days the sunshine made up for that.

This time I strolled around in Jardin du Luxembourg. And though I eagerly wait the arrival of spring I gotta say the still bare trees in the park were pretty too.

When I had walked around for some time I started to hear singing. And there a group of french people, enjoying their saturday in the park too had gathered around a gazebo to sing chansons.

There was a contrabass and an accordion accompanying the singing too.

Unfortunately the battery of my camera had died already at that point.. but luckily I got at least a few Vine videos (to watch those you unfortunately need to be on Vine too though as I did not sent them to Twitter).

Well, enough with words. Let’s go walking.

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P.S Did you find three Paris landmarks from these photos?

Rolls with garlic butter or pesto

Hello you,

I hope there’s cake where you are. And that you’re already finished with everything important you needed to do this week so you’re already eating that piece of cake with a nice cup of coffee.

Me, I still have a few things to do before I can do the same.

I also hope you don’t think I don’t like sweet things like cake anymore because the last few posts have been the savory kind. I do and I have a few things I’ve been testing. So, it won’t be too long until I’ll share those but let’s make rolls with garlic butter and pesto first. Ok?

If you read the carrot roll post you might already guess I like rolls.

These rolls are made with practically the same kind of dough. The only difference is you’ll probably have to add a bit more flour now that you’re not adding the grated carrots.

Rolls with Garlic Butter or Pesto

0,5 l water

2 teaspoons honey

1 teaspoon salt

11 g dry yeast

3-4 dl oats

About 10-12 dl flour

About 0,5 dl vegetable oil

From here you’ll find what to do. It really isn’t hard. Well, it requires a bit effort when made by hand but it’s still not hard.

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When you leave the dough to rise you can do the garlic butter and the pesto (here’s a recipe for a coriander and ginger kind). I used store bought pesto this time.

Garlic butter

About soft 120 g butter

5 cloves of garlic

1 dl chopped parsley

Some salt

First I made the rolls with pesto.

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I rolled out the dough. Making savory rolls is just like making cinnamon buns.

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I used both red and green pesto because I wanted to see which one would taste better.

(They were both good but I maybe liked the ones with green pesto more. Maybe.)

Then you roll the rolled out dough and cut same size pieces of it.

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And if you’d happen to be baking these for a certain, soon approaching pink and red themed day… You could shape the rolls into hearts.

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And what does the garlic butter version look like?

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Not bad I think.

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But it was easier to not try to make these heart shaped. I suspect the amount of garlic butter used made that challenging. But I did not want to compromise with the amount of garlic butter used. So I stuck with the basic cut-out shape.

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Just like rolls these are better if you let them rise a bit before baking.

Before baking them in 200 Celsius/ 390 Fahrenheit I gave them a milk wash.

Then baked them for 10-12 minutes.

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These are good on their own.

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Or with a salad. Or with soup.

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They don’t mind the freezer so you could easily make a patch beforehand. If you’d be in example planning a pique-nique and would not want to make everything the same day.

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Enjoy!