Jul 22, 2010

French Food Safari Part 1: Breakfast, Ganache Patisserie, Castlecrag. In Realtime, Preparations For Japan Continue In Earnest.

The air was crisp, the trees bare of leaves and the clouds appeared to be retreating as I took a brisk walk to Central Station, the meeting point for the French Food Safari.  I went on the tour yesterday and returned home with a lot of photos, just as well I had my super massive new memory card installed - thank you eBay.  Fortunately, not all 170 photos made it to this post.  I'm going to report back to you over the next few days.

Whilst almost every other commuter I saw was getting to work with umbrellas, black coats and serious faces, I was climbing on to a plush tour bus to spend the day eating as the French do.  Our tour guide, Marie is a food stylist and hails from the South of France.  She was lovely and was very informative and approachable throughout the day.  Marie impressed upon us many important facts about the French and their food, including these:

  • the diverse landscapes of France have resulted in distinct regions where the different soils produce foods with different flavours that lend themselves to different styles of cooking
  • that 'a meal without bread is not a meal'
  • that French Women Really Don't Get Fat despite all that lovely food. Probably because it's real food and there's no snacking in between solid meals, appreciated at leisure rather than being gulped down on the go.

From the cover of InStyle, Cameron (my unofficial diet buddy and traveling companion) was imploring me to show self restraint because come summer, a winter's worth of buttery pastries and rich chocolates would no longer be able to hide in opaque tights and heavy winter coats.  It's all about living dangerously, Cameron.  You star in a film with Tom Cruise and I head to Ganache for a French styled breakfast....

Ganache, 85 Edinburgh Road, Castlecrag tel: (02) 9967 2882.

Streamy windows from the morning's baking.  In France, bread is often baked several times a day and the locals buy only enough for what they need for the moment.  The bread changes in texture and flavour, even after a few hours.  Different bakers create their own flavours in their bread.  I try not to think about the half loaves of bread in my freezer. I buy bread once a week on Thursday, put it in the fridge until Saturday and whatever doesn't get eaten on the weekend gets frozen.

We entered the cozy patisserie and were greeted with plates of pastries and baguettes for breakfast.

Yes, that is indeed a caffe au lait in a bowl.  When held in both hands, it is the perfect size to keep both your hands pleasantly warm.  This is definitely a drink to be savoured sitting down.  None of those paper cups with plastic sipper lids of on-the-go Sydney and other cities.

I buttered my baguette, added some rhubarb jam and then ate it the French way.  Dunked in my coffee and then eaten straight away.

These are just a few photos of Ganache's range.  Quiches and biscuits above.


Brioche and almond croissants.

After breakfast, we went on a tour of the kitchen and also met the owners of Ganache.  There are so many photos and thoughts to share that I've decided to write a separate post about the kitchen tour.

In the meantime, I've managed to bring a little bit of France into my hum drum working day.

I brought my macarons to work and had them with lunch.  The yellow one was honey flavoured and the brown was a fig and nut - words cannot describe how good these were.  More about macarons and Masterchef (!!) later.

I implemented change by swapping around  my handbag.  I do not do well with structured slim handbags but to be French is to be structured and slim so I will do my best this week.  I tend to get my hand stuck in the zipper section as I delve in to find my wallet, hand cream, iPhone, keys, pager, pen... How can anything get lost in such a small bag?

I am immersing myself in Japanese in preparation for the trip.  I have a long, long way to go.  There is sadly, no iPhone app that speaks for me  in Japanese.

I have a migraine from trying to do an Excel spreadsheet of our itinerary.  There isn't enough space in those little cells.  I switched to a table in Word and it's a little better.  I will report back tomorrow and together we can appreciate the magnificence of Regimented Structured Vacationing.

I am unwinding with a few Belgian chocolates.  Actually, Mr SSG has eaten most of them.

Oh Cameron, my diet buddy, forgive me for I have sinned - big time.

Ganache Patisserie Francaise on Urbanspoon


  1. Ooh! That looks like a fabulous cafe. And not too far from me! Can't wait to read about the rest of the day's activities. I love your Hermes bag - it is Hermes, right??

  2. Hello Miss Kitty-Cat
    Yes, it's Hermes.

    Stay tuned for the next instalment...

    SSG xxx

  3. I like this line..

    'I implemented change by swapping around my handbag.' I am so using it in my next selection criteria!

    I hope your spontaneous itinerary is going well :)

  4. I really love brioches and croissants but the ones shown in the 10th picture are a little bit... burnt ;)

    French online

  5. Your blog is really awesome. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. I like various cuisine food, french culture , french tradition, french language with very much. Last summer i have visited France as well as I have visited French restaurant. I have enjoyed French food very much.


  6. I want them to be on my table. My appetite is now increasing. that's really awesome. http://tablecoversdepot.com/


Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. I'm having trouble importing comments from Blogger right now so using Disqus or sending a tweet would be your best bet. X


Related Posts with Thumbnails