G. Detou is a culinary mecca in Paris. It is a small shop just off of the busy market street Rue Montorgueil that holds any baking ingredient you could ever need – or not even know you need. Countless Parisian food bloggers, both French and American alike, have written love letters to the store as a necessary supplier for their kitchens, and I am lucky enough to have it at my disposal (though, bien sûr, I got lost for 20 minutes trying to find it. Alas).
In my life, I have had many, many ideas better than making my pilgrimage to G. Detou the Saturday before Christmas. The experience was overwhelming, to say the least, and didn’t exactly lend itself to perusing through the rows of spices and rillettes de canard. My fellow shoppers were on a mission for mustards, rillettes, marrons glacées, and baking chocolate, while I would have been content just looking through the store all day. As the name implies – j’ai de tout – they really do have everything, with signs telling shoppers they can get Iranian saffron in both powdered or threaded form (both of which are stored behind the counter as if it were contraband). Chocolate was sold in bars and in bags for the more invested cook, while the displays of marrons glacées had been severely dented by holiday shoppers.
I was on a mission for only two ingredients to make Clotilde’s easy orangettes, two ingredients which took me quite some time to find as I was so enamored by everything else in the shop (and also couldn’t walk across quickly due to the large amount of people). I begrudgingly passed over rows of mustard in preparation for this week’s trip to Dijon (where I fully intend to buy pounds and pounds of it), and only faltered slightly by adding a bag of sun dried tomatoes to my basket.
Eventually I left with my candied oranges and chocolate and made my way up and down Rue Montorgueil for a while before stopping at a café to work on the menu for Christmas (with my dad who arrives tomorrow!). Across the street, butchers left chickens and turkeys to hang, heads still attached and feathered, while the fromageries pushed the best Mont d’Or, Italian specialty stores displayed panettone, and patisseries set out their best buche de noel. I still have a few presents to pick up and vin chauds to drink, but the orangettes are cooling quite nicely, and I have a trip planned to G. Detou for after the holiday rush…more chocolate is in order, I think. ♦