Continental breakfast is one of the expressions that influenced the name of our blog.
According to www.wisegeek.org and www.businessdictionary.com, a continental breakfast is a light morning meal that traditionally includes bread products, with butter/jam/honey, cheese, meat, croissants, pastries, rolls, fruit juice and various hot beverages.
It seems that continental breakfast is an easy way out; not as elaborate as cooked English breakfast. This doesn’t make it less enjoyable. On the contrary: quick and tasty!
Possibilities are endless. Pick your bread from German rye to French baguette, get your favorite jam flavour and add a pastry or two. This should get you started.
Brioches and marble cakes can also be part of the menu.
I have always been a sweet person in the morning. (Strictly in food terms; I am the grumpy type when I wake up.)
My absolute favourite: chocolate croissants or pains au chocolats (pictured) with sugar icing on top. I have never found these anywhere else than in the North East of France though; a secret well kept. True croissants lovers
might scream blasphemy, but they are so good served with a café au lait (a homemade latte basically).
Having said this, I remember fantastic breakfasts in Austria where I used to start with various charcuteries and cheeses, before moving on to my usual (bread, butter and jam or croissant).
Someone asked me the other day if you could eat continental breakfast everyday.
Why not. But we are all rushing out the door, mornings on weekdays, getting to work or/and dropping kids to nursery and school. So it’s not always easy to properly enjoy breakfast. Well, that’s what we tell ourselves.
Breakfast was so important growing up in France that I remember my parents setting the table up the night before so we could all sit together and enjoy a toast or a piece of baguette while listening to the radio, before getting on with our days.
It’s all about moderation anyway so it shouldn’t take you ages: limit yourself to one pastry and don’t eat the whole baguette! Only exception to the rule: week-ends and holidays when breakfast can easily take up to an hour.
It is well known that surroundings are a key element to any meal. So to set the mood for a continental breakfast we suggest the following:
– Weather permitting, eat it outside in the garden or on the balcony. We have the luxury of being able to do so when visiting relatives in France and Greece. Here we simply open our kitchen window on sunny days. It does make a difference!
– Set the table with a bright tablecloth. Let the stereotypes kick in and go for red or blue vichy pattern.
– Listen to French or Italian music. Anything! I personally just enter ‘French’ on Spotify and go with the flow.
– To complement your baguette, grow a moustache and wear a beret. Or maybe not…
Tell us where you get the best bread and croissants where you live.
Here are some suggestions if you are in one of these cities:
Paris’ Top Croissants in 2013
– Benjamin Turquier of 134 RdT, 134 Rue de Turenne, 75003
– Djibril Bodian of Le Grenier à Pain des Abbessess, 38 Rue des Abbesses, 75018
– Anthony Bosson of Boulangerie L’Essentiel Mouffetard, 2 Rue Mouffetard, 75005
– Frédéric Lalos of Boulangerie des Belles Feuilles, 22 Rue des Belles Feuilles, 75016
– Frédéric Pichard of Boulangerie Pichard, 88 Rue Cambronne, 75015
– Philippe Marache of 92 Avenue de la République, 75011
Paris top baguettes in 2013
– Au Paradis du Gourmand, 156 Rue Raymond Losserand, 75014
– Boulangerie Raphaëlle, 1 rue Feutrier, 75018
– Boulangerie Damiani, 125 avenue du Clichy, 75017
– Christian Vabret, 27 rue Francois Miron, 75004
– Maison Cailleaud, 104 Cours de Vincennes, 75012
– Yosuké Fijié from Maison Landemeine, 56 rue du Clichy, 75009
– Dominique Saibron, 77 avenue du Géneral Leclerc, 75014
– Le Grenier à Pain Lafayette, 91 rue Faubourg Poissonière, 75009
– La Parisienne, 12 rue Coustou, 75018
– Claude Besnier, 40 rue du Bourgogne, 75007
– La Barantine, 202 Brunstfield Place
In New York
and also, for the best baguette according to a true New-Yorker
In Hong Kong
Categories: Food & Drink