Thursday, April 9, 2009

Churros in Paris

There is the most adorable man at the Marché Bastille, who makes fresh churros. So fresh, they couldn't be any fresher! We walked by the stand, barely noticing it, but the smell brought us back, as well as seeing some happy customers munching away on a batch. So we turned around and headed back, this will be worth it.

There were a few people ahead of us, always a good sign for anything food related I've found, and waiting gave us time to watch and learn. He had a few churros on the display table, but we quickly realized those were display only, as he wouldn't serve any churros older than 20 seconds. He seemed to recognized some regulars, and started frying up an order. One order at a time. maybe two at a time. A bag of 6 churros for 2 Euros and a bag of 3 for 1 Euro. You can't beat that. Plus these churros were at least a foot long.

By the time we step up to order, he turns to us and tells us that it'll be five minutes since he has to make more batter. Again, the waiting turned out to be a valuable learning experience as we saw how he made it. Churros use a dough very similar to choux paste, the dough used for eclairs, cream puffs, gougeres,etc.. He had a big bowl in which he mixed the flour, butter, water, eggs and some vanilla, the steam rising up and fogging his glasses. He reloaded the press which he mounted above the filled-to-the-brim vat of oil the churros would be fried in. He pressed out a batch for us, and before we knew it, he was rolling them in sugar, and passing them to us. I ordered a Cannellé too, since I am a huge fan of them and they looked very good. (They are the tiny brown cake pictured below, look kind of like a castle tower..).

We started to walk off, but dug in immediately, and those churros were amazing. I wouldn't even attempt to say I am an expert, but I think you'd be hard pressed to find better ones. Crispy, not greasy, and perfectly hot and sugared, they disappeared quickly! I might have to go back this weekend and check it out again. And the Cannellé had the right texture (in my opinion), and the hint of lemon was nice, but I prefer the classic vanilla bean and rum combination.

Marché Bastille
boulevard Richard-Lenoir
between rues Amelot et Saint-Sabin
Thursday 7 - 2:30
Sunday 7 - 3

photos courtesy of my friend Val, on her visit to Paris

1 comment:

  1. when you come back, we'll have to make churros with my new friends at the bar/resto. katharine makes them to-order occasionally for dessert, tosses them in cinnamon sugar, and serves them with cold chocolate for contrast--delicious!