I arrived in Paris a week ago and have been in a state of culinary bliss since the minute I stepped off the plane. I am staying in the apartment of some friends while they are away on their own vacation, and I must say that this is the only way to do Paris. Sure I have to make my own bed and open my own doors, but in exchange I have a kitchen to cook in and a place to store all of the delicacies that I accumulate throughout each day. This also means that, unlike most tourists, I am not limited to dining only in restaurants and that the gorgeous plump figs, perfectly ripened cheeses and vast incarnations of foie gras that scream out to me as I walk past, can find their way home with me to be delighted upon for days to follow. The problem is that I am starting to find my miniscule, Parisian fridge difficult to close as I keep cramming it with more and more.
Every neighborhood in Paris is lined with small food shops. In the few blocks that I walk each day from my flat to the nearest metro station I pass two patisseries, a cheese shop, a produce shop, a butcher and charcuterie, a shop featuring caviar and smoked and pickled fish, a foie gras shop and a candy shop. The temptation is overwhelming and the quality of ingredients is so high here, that it’s tough to restrain myself. Soon I’ll return to the States, though, where the patisserie and cheese shops will be replaced by 7-11′s and KFC’s and I know I’d better take advantage of what’s around me while I can.