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In France: The buttered one

Posted by guest  October 3, 2008 08:44 AM

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QUIBERON - A Provencal friend of mine who claims to be "allergic to butter" would perish in this town. Good thing she’s not here – more for me! Last night I had wonderful crèpes at La Duchesse Anne where melted butter is brushed on the hot galette (a crèpe made with buckwheat flour) before the ingredients are added and often brushed again before the finished dish goes out to the floor.
This morning, I stopped at the Boulangerie Bihan “Trois Marches” and picked up a pair of kouign amann – Breton for “cake” and “butter,” though they should have also added Breton for “lots of extra sugar,” which caramelizes around the whole thing and makes life good. Though they’re not particularly large, I learned that eating two is a bit like trying to get through an entrecôte pour deux personnes alone.
Luckily, my arteries and I were up for it. There’s a moment of crunchy, sugary goodness where your teeth stick together, then all at once, the butter gives up the ghost and becomes a liquid, full of so much flavor, I giggle.
Later, on the train back to Paris, I tasted another kouign amann that I brought from Quiberon’s famous Maison Riguidel - touted to be the city’s best. These were excellent – flatter and more cake-like in form, but Boulangerie Bihan’s got them beat, hands down.
SPECIAL NOTE: People of Quiberon, unite! Go to the Boulangerie Bihan (where I found my favorite kouign amann) and encourage the good woman running it not to close the bakery doors for good following the death of her brother the baker – she’s kept on running the bakery, but is talking of shutting it down within a month, taking one of the city’s tiny treasures with her.

Boulangerie Bihan “Trois Marches” 34 rue de Verdun QUIBERON – 02.97.50.14.96
Creperie Duchesse Anne - 10, Place Duchesse Anne QUIBERON 02 97 30 49 33
Maison Riguidel – 38, Rue de Port Maria, Quiberon. 02.97.50.07.41

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Globe travel correspondent Joe Ray writes own blog, Eating The Motherland and contributes to the English language version of Simon Says! the French food and lifestyle blog run by French food critic Francois Simon.

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