Afang soup (gnetum)
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I’ve been fortunate in my travels to know what I want, especially during a 24-hour layover in Paris. I could forgive myself if I didn’t see major attractions such as the Eiffel Tower or the Louvre. However, I know I would live in constant regret if I denied myself the opportunity to break bread in the best bakery in Paris (and possibly the world).
At 5:15 am, I woke up and left my fiancé on a secret mission to visit at Du Pain et Des Idees, a bakery which was ranked as being the best Parisian bread maker in 2008 and 2012. After I walked several blocks and made two train transfers, I arrived 15 minutes early. It was cold and I was anxious to enter, but I’ll never forget peering by the window to see an old French lady pulling freshly steamed bread out of the oven. I knew I was in for a treat. At 6:45 am, I was the first customer to arrive and felt like a kid entering a candy store. Baguettes, fig pastries, almond croissants, plain croissants…everything looked so good. I must have grabbed at least five pastries in addition to their prized baguette. I think the lady was a little impressed that a foreigner was willing to arrive at the crack of dawn to purchase her bread. She was courteous and helpful, even though I was badly stumbling in my spoken French. Despite getting lost, waiting outside in the freezing cold, and making the long trek, I was able to traverse back to the hotel and surprised my beloved partner with some treats. I thankfully have the bragging rights to say I gave him some of the best baguettes and pastries in Paris!
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