Meet my Parisian friend Pauline!
Pauline is my coolest friend. I mean coolest in her style but also in her way of life : her apartment is cool, her neighbourhood is cool, her husband is cool (he's an actor so of course he is), her way to be a young mum is cool and even her baby Gabin is the coolest I've ever seen. Always calm and sweet, Pauline makes me a better effect than hours of yoga to relax.
I met her in mid school and really discovered her personnality during a memorable school trip to Roma. We were sharing the same room and she was the one making us laugh at night with good jokes.
Pauline welcomed me in her new apartment, in the XIXth of Paris, area I must admit I didn't really knew before. She has the chance to live right in front of the canal de l'Ourcq, seeing swans sometimes by her windows.
She shares with us a "gratin" recipe, perfect with a glass of red wine for large friends dinners.
Where do you come from?
My mum is from Bordeaux and we lived there until my 11 years old. Unfortunately I was too young to enjoy good wines from the Region, but my grandmother was sometimes offering me few drops saying it was very good for health... She was also very often preparing peaches poached into red wine for dessert. And of course I was having amazing cannelés all the time!
It's a very nice city to live, with large parks and the beautiful Garonne's banks. Only 2 hours from the beach and 3 hours from the Pyrennées mountains, it's the perfect localisation.
You live in the XIXth arrondissement, what do you enjoy most in this area of Paris ?
It's a very dynamic area of Paris, with new bars and restaurant openings all the time and I love it! I have the chance to live right in front of the canal and this is priceless. It's so lovely to see water while opening my windows, with this clear and luminous view. Close from the Buttes Chaumont park and La villette, we have a lot of green spaces around and this is important with a kid. And something very nice to do here is to rent a little boat on the canal (no need to have any driving license) and enjoy a stroll, having a little drink on the water with friends at the end of the day or having fun with kids.
Which other area of Paris do you enjoy for a stroll?
There are so many... But I would say that my favorite Parisian stroll for Sundays is starting in le Marais little streets, continuing on the banks of the Seine to end at the Natural History Museum.
How would you describe your cooking habits?
I'm not a chef, and I'm not cooking a lot during the week. But as soon as I have friends or family coming home it's a real pleasure to cook a good home made dinner. I ask recipes to my mum who is a very good cook, or search for new surprising recipes on internet. What I enjoy most are "amuses bouches", preparing a lot of different little things. My husband loves to cook and we share some good moments cooking together.
What region or city would you recommend to people wanting to discover something else than Paris?
The "cote basque" which offers so many various activities: beautiful landscapes, surfing classes, or for the most courageous people climbing on the top of the Rhunes (905m high mountain of the Pyrénées).
Pauline's good tips in Paris :
L'Hôtel Amour : for a romantic dinner in a little garden.
Le Pavillon des canaux : for a lovely girl friends lunch.
Le Nüba : to have a drink in summer enjoying an outdoor party on the Seine.
La Rotonde : for a Sunday brunch.
Which recipe are you sharing with us ?
A chicken and zucchini gratin that my mum used to do at home.
Market check list for 4 people :
- 2 chicken cotlets
- 2 zucchinis
- 1 onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- a bunch of basil
- a bunch of parsley
- a bunch of chive
- 200 ml of liquid cream
- 2 eggs
- 20 gr of grated parmesan cheese
- a pinch of breadscrumbs
- a pinch of grated comté
- some olive oil
- salt, pepper and espelette pepper
Slice thinly the onion and cook it with some olive oil in a frying pan. Wash the zucchinis and cut them into slices. Add them to the onion with the crushed garlic cloves. Cook for about 10 min and add the chiseled herbs.
During this time, cut the chicken into small pieces and cook it with some olive oil.
In a bowl mix together the eggs, the cream and the parmesan. Season with a pinch of salt, pepper and espelette pepper.
Put half of the zucchinis into a plate (don't forget to remove the garlic gloves), add the chicken and put the rest of zucchinis on the top. Put the cream and eggs preparation and cover with some breadscrumbs and comté (or another grated cheese).
Cook for about 20 min at 200°C / 390°F.