Posts Tagged ‘tart’

Helmut Great Cake

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

Yesterday I finally found an opportunity to try a new(ish) café near me, called Helmut Newcake. It a gluten free pâtisserie offering all of your most loved treats in a deliciously gluten-free way. I always feel sorry for people who are living in or visiting France who are gluten intolerant (or dairy for that matter) because you are instantly excluded from most of the greatest food that France has to offer. No baguettes, no viennoiseries, no crêpes, no chocolate tarts… Poor, poor people… but finally, gluten intolerance has been recognised in Paris and there is now ONE gluten free pâtisserie. It’s a miracle! Now all they have to do is invent lactose free camembert.

I was joined by two fellow Perthians (Judy and Natasha) and a mini-French-Australian (Hugo just turned one and has an Australian mum, a French Dad and he loves straws.) Natasha is gluten intolerant and was excited to finally be able to eat cake without regretting it later.

Helmut Newcake is located in a BoBo-concentrated zone next to Le Petit Cambodge (a hipster cambodian restaurant) and across an intersection from one of the best pizza restaurant in Paris, Maria Luisa. You can also go there for meals but we were after cake, most of which had been snatched up by earlier patrons. The range of cakes was great – there were fruit tarts, choux pastries and your more basic cakes, all very reasonably priced. I went for the peach and pistachio tart – seriously good.

Helmut Newcake tart

Served a cute little plate.

Crunchy pastry with a smooth pistachio filling and just enough peach on top. Often gluten free cakes taste like they have been over worked or too much effort has been put into making them gluten free – not so for this tart. They serve Clipper tea and Judy and I were given a huge teapot of hot water to serve ourselves endless cups. I love a café that isn’t stingy with the hot water.

I will definitely be going back and making it a regular hang out. I have also discovered two other new cafés that I have to go and try soon – every week there is another place opening up. So much cake to try…

Pie.

Monday, April 30th, 2012

As I mentioned in my last entry, one of the main reasons why I am uncertain about my ability to complete the 40-in-40 challenge is that I need to eat. However, I will claim baking and the invention of desserts as a creative challenge. Therefore my strawberry and rhubarb pie that I baked to take to my friends’ house for dinner counts.

Strawberry and rhubarb pie

Pie.

It was a bit of a flop. It tasted ok but the pastry didn’t turn out how I hoped and it exploded in the oven, so as far as baking successes go, this wasn’t really one of them. However, we learn from our mistakes, don’t we kids? Next time I know to be less lazy and make my own pastry rather than blindly buying pre-made pastry from the supermarket and choosing the wrong one. Oops.

I Want to Vomit

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

I thought I had experienced the worst possible restaurant meal of my life when I had “Mont St Michel” inspired fish at a tourist restaurant on the aforementioned island. However, it turns out I was wrong, and the worst meal that I would have in my life would, in fact, be today.

Allow me to explain. It is Tuesday which means we have a lady come and change the sheets and towels and do a quick once over with the vacuum. Yes, we are spoilt rich kids. This means we have to leave the apartment when she arrives because 1. there isn’t enough room for all of us and 2. I hate the fact that someone cleans my apartment (although I do enjoy not having to deal with washing my own sheets.) So today she came at lunch time so Tom and I decided to go out for lunch. We went with our friend, Sonia, and headed to a local brasserie that Tom had eaten at before and that he assured me was AWESOME.

Tom had tried to get me to go to this brasserie on numerous previous occasions but my warning lights for “IT’S A BRASSERIE! DO NOT EAT THERE!” had flashed and I had suggested we go somewhere else. Unfortunately the cold weather had gotten to my brain today and I said we could go to this brasserie just as long as Tom swore it was really that good. Yes. Ok, fine.

When we told Sonia (a local Frenchie) that we were going to a brasserie she had a worried look on her face but came along with us like a good sport. From the outside it didn’t look too bad – there were people in there eating and the food looked relatively edible. And so we sat down. There was a set menu of entree/main or main/dessert with a glass of wine or a coffee for 11.50Euros. We ordered and, not really thinking clearly, I ordered ‘La tête de veau’ focussing more on the ‘veau’ (veal) than the ‘tête’. I mainly selected this because the other options were duck (too fatty), or fish with caper sauce (too caper-y.) As we waited for the food, Sonia commented that she had never dared order ‘La tête de veau’, to which I asked why. Because it is the head. Right. Of course it is seeing as ‘tête’ means head and I know that. I’ve known that for years but I presumed it was like many cuts of meat in French – it isn’t what it sounds like. You can also order ‘nuts of veal’ and ‘mouse of lamb’ and they aren’t what you think they are.

Tête de veau

Tête de veau

My dish arrived and I was a little bit concerned by the fact that the entire thing appeared to be fat. Fat with some sort of grey skin attached. Writing this is proving difficult because the more I remember, the more I wish to regurgitate it. I tried to eat as much as I could but it was all fat. As a person who cuts ALL fat off meat before eating it, this wasn’t the wisest choice. The veal was then covered in a ‘sauce’ that was hard boiled egg and onion with some sort of mayonnaise. It was so strong. Thankfully there were two boiled potatoes on the plate so my lunch was reduced to two boiled potatoes.

Tête de veau

The left overs – that's fat. Fat fat fat.

It’s ok, I thought. I’m having dessert. Sonia and I had both ordered the apricot tart and I declared to Tom that apricot tart can never be done wrong. WELL! Apparently it can! To make an apricot tart inedible, all you have to do is cook it for far too long so that the base burns and the insides curdle. It was seriously disgusting.

We then had to wait for our coffees to arrive because they were part of the deal. Sonia gave hers to Tom and I just didn’t drink mine. The only upside was the Valrhona chocolate on the side of the coffee. So for my 11.50 Euros I had two boiled potatoes and a little piece of Valrhona chocolate. And Tom got a lot of dirty looks from two unimpressed girls. Poor Tom.

Another Day, Another Cake

Saturday, August 20th, 2011

Not many days go by that I don’t eat cake. Yesterday was no exception when Tom and I went for a walk (I was continuing my search for a restaurant for Monday night and once again was not surprised to see it was a construction site) and decided to try L’Estaminet, a cafe at the Marche des Enfants Rouges. I had seen it on my walks and had decided it looked like a ‘good cake place.’ What can I say? It’s a skill – I can spot them well.

Nectarine Tart

A piece of homemade tarte au nectarine.

The tart was homemade with a delicious crunchy crust and a soft almond paste centre. The nectarines were tart and combined well with the sweet almond filling. So good. The coffee was good too, and they served it in a nice red cup which always makes me smile. I’m going back for more.