Easter In Paris: The Mission

Easter In Paris: The Mission

Easter weekend has always been an event for my family. As a little girl I would partake in beach side Easter egg hunts in Florida, then as a teenager in Minnesota I would eagerly await the Excessive feast of Easter brunch. Once I got to college I even began cooking the meal for my family, but this year was different. For once, there was no family. I was in a foreign country with no relatives or familiar traditions with which to celebrate. But that was all right, because I was going on an adventure to the mother country of gourmet food. This year I spent Easter weekend in Paris.

I went on the trip with a group of friends from my study abroad program in Italy, half of whom are in the culinary program with me. The group dynamics could not have been better because we all had the same goal for the trip: eat as much as possible of as many French creations as we could get our hands on! After half a bottle of pepto-bismol and two added kilos, I am here to tell you that we not only completed our goals but we fueled our ambitions and filled our stomachs.

My gastronomic mission was composed of two parts. Firstly, I wanted to try the traditional versions of all my usual favorite French dishes, such as French onion soup and steak frites. Secondly, I was determined to try as many outlandish French delicacies as I could afford.

The adventure began on our first night with an escargot appetizer. Delicious. The texture of snails resembles calamari, which I have no problem with, though some may object. The escargot at this particular restaurant was seasoned typically with garlic butter and parsley, a combination which dominated over the flavor of snails, but that may be a good thing. I chose to order an organic roast chicken for my main course, as the French are notoriously known for their herb roasted chicken, however I was sadly disappointed to receive an overly crisp, burnt and dry half chicken. Moving on.

The main attraction of the night was a plate ordered by my friend Rian. I am saddened to say that I only got to savor a few bites of this delicacy, as I was not the one to order the meal. Rian was gracious enough to lend out the samples she gave; I would have hoarded the plate to myself. Duck Confit. What a revelation. Crispy, salty skin protecting tender meat that falls apart at the touch of a fork. One bite of duck with a smidgen of fat and I was in heaven. I will have dreams about that duck. We may have even seen his family members the next morning.

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