Lingering Over Lunch in Paris

It was the French crêpe recipe I noticed in my kitchen file that brought me back to the terraced street in Paris, the rows of cobblestones drenched in sunlight and the busy café we selected for lunch. The restaurant L’Ebouillanté was busy in a mellow late Autumn sort of way, lingering made easier in the European sun. I clearly remember the day last November, wandering for hours around le Marais district of the city, known for its boutiques and art galleries, block after block of charm, until we collapsed happily on the inviting chairs arranged haphazardly in the shade. It was an exquisite moment, the back of the lovely gothic church Saint-Gervais et Saint-Protais towering over the scene and the sparkling Seine just across the way.

It’s why we have the urge to roam, I think, to fill ourselves with unfamiliar cultures until we’re exhausted and ready to re-fuel with the local food and drink, energized for another adventure. I can still taste the crêpes prepared how I love them, crispy and not too sweet, more like a meal than a dessert. Busy schedules tend to make our meal times upside-down these days, and crêpes are perfect for any time of day.  You can dream a little dream of Paris with my favorite crêpe recipe, below, and if you don’t feel like cooking? Take a break, and just dream.

Combine 3/4 cup of sifted flour, 3/4 cup of water, 2/3 cup of milk, 3 eggs, 2 Tb. melted butter, and 3/4 tsp. of salt in a blender and blend for 5 seconds. Stop machine, scrape sides with a spatula, and blend for 20 seconds longer. Transfer batter to a mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let stand for 1 hour.  Heat a 7 inch iron crêpe pan until moderately hot, brush pan lightly with oil, and heat until oil is very hot, remove pan from the heat. Stir batter, half-fill a 1/4 cup with batter, and pour into pan. Rotate the pan quickly so batter covers bottom in a thin layer, return to heat, loosen crêpe with a spatula, and cook until the underside is golden. Turn crêpe, brown other side, and transfer to a plate. Continue until the batter is gone. Adding 3 tablespoons of orange liqueur to the batter is a nice touch. L’Ebouillanté is located at 6 rue des Barres, Paris France, Marias, 4ème

83 Comments

  1. I like the composition of your photograph, Elisa…. 😉 I’ve been to Paris three times, squeezed in between business flights, and still haven’t found the time to roam the streets with my camera.

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  2. You’ve given a sweetly evocative description of one of my top five cities of the world (while everyone’s, really). One cannot go to Pairs too many times. You’ve thrown into your narrative the spark that reminded you of your adventure: crepes. I’ve been thinking about making them for weeks. They use to be part of a monthly regime. I always found making them to be a meditative experience, and certainly one that recalls the thrill of Parisian ambience and cuisine.

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    1. Paris is a city you could visit a hundred times and never regret the time spent. I think you nailed it when you mentioned the thrill of Parisian ambience…no one can get enough. I’m hoping you take the minute to savor both the process and consumption of a lovely batch of crêpes soon, Sally. Take care and have a wonderful week.

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  3. I have memories of a visit there too and it is a lovely city. BTW – every time I see your picture (gravatar) I think what a kind person you seem to be and how I am thankful for your “likes”.

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    1. Shirley, you just made my day…week…year! Thank you so much for your lovely comment, you’ve touched me in a way I can’t describe. I’m happy that you loved Paris and hope that your memories of that lovely city stay with you for a lifetime. Take care!
      Elisa

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  4. Nice to see this recipe. I think crepes are like Russian blini without the yeast. Also like blini, the multi-purpose food for almost any occasion, fasting or non-fasting. Elisa, have you ever written on that French pastry of choice the croissant? On the ONE day I was in Paris with a friend, I tried ordering one at multiple places at 4 in the afternoon and got laughed out of the cafe. Told I was ordering them at the wrong TIME of day.

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    1. I like your take on the crêpe, Russian style. Seems like the International multi-pupose, anytime of day food, unlike the croissant! Do you think conducting a croissant ordering experience would be a good excuse for me to return to Paris? I think so! 😉
      Thanks so much for stopping by and for sharing your experience.
      Elisa

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  5. “Let stand for an hour…” – great advice for enjoying a new travel place or just being back in that moment. Looks like a wonderful place to visit.

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    1. My success rate for photography isn’t very good, probably one out of every 100 or so makes me smile. Thank goodness this was a smiler, because everything about that afternoon was wonderful. Thank you so much for stopping by, it was nice hearing from you!
      Elisa

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  6. A very, very nice street shot.
    Also, I saw on the late news last night about Mont Saint Michel becoming an island when it became surrounded by water. Didn’t know it only happens every 18 years.

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    1. Hellooo, thank you, I’m sorry I’m late…I feel like the White Rabbit sometimes. Yes, I saw the story about Mont Saint Michel not long ago. That intriguing sometime island has such a hold on me that I couldn’t finish the story, sad because I couldn’t be there to see it myself. Hmmm, sounds selfish, but maybe an act self-preservation. You are good to remember that I love it so.

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  7. what a beautiful street scene, would love to be sitting there enjoying a glass of wine in the lovely surroundings! I love crepes and can’t wait to try your recipe, thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. I just mentioned to another friend blogger that it would be nice to share a glass of wine with her somewhere in le Marais. A real treat would be to meet with you and Jo (of Restless Jo) in a café near the Seine. 🙂

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    1. Oh how I envy you! What wonderful memories you must have of the City of Light. I need to stop returning there over and over so I can have a chance to see more of the world! Take Care!

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    1. Otto, thank you. It seems easier to capture a beautiful moment while in Paris. The senses are heightened and everything about being there feels wonderful. I’m happy I had a photo moment so I can “return” any time I’m feeling the need for a Paris fix. Not the same as the real thing though, is it?! 😉
      Take care,
      Elisa

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    1. It’s funny that I just realized that this was one of the few truly nice shots from our trip. I’m glad it was this one. Let’s go sit in the sun, sip some wine and eat a few crispy crêpes, Naomi!

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  8. *sigh*…..Your photo has me longing to be in Paris right now. Paris in the springtime is absolute heaven, but it looks very okay in autumn too. I guess any time is good to be there. 🙂 Thanks for the recipe. I’ll save it for when I’m in a crêpe frame of mind. 🙂 xx

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    1. I know the feeling! Just going through my comments on this post made me a little melancholy thinking about what we’re missing. Seeing yours cheered me up though! Take care and have a great weekend. 🙂

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