My wife and I were so blessed to celebrate our 5th wedding anniversary with a trip to Paris years back. One of our favorite daily delights was breakfast in our very small boutique hotel in the 7th Arrondissement. Each day we would come downstairs to the whirling and gurgling and vibrations of an orange juicer behind the hotel’s small bar. A single server was waiting on the few guests who were all served a traditional Parisian Breakfast each day. "Arrd ooou soff?" she would ask each English speaking guest. After the 2nd day we realized this was "hard" or "soft" referring to the consistency of our hard boiled eggs. Ooo la la! We were fueled up for a day of touring French Gardens and Chateaux.
"Petit-déjeuner a la Parisienne" as the French call it, is now a guilty pleasure for our family and it's oh so simple. You really don't even need to know how to cook to prepare this for your family or guests. Breakfast is actually my favorite meal to serve to company. Why, you ask? Most of the prep-work is done the evening before, the meal is usually low cost and clean up is fairly easy.
What is a Parisian Breakfast?
Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
Coffee or Cafe Au Lait
Hard Boiled Eggs Served in the Shell with Salt and Pepper
Fresh Fruit Compote
If you have loads of time, (and certainly all of us have so much these days, not!), you could make your bread, jams and even yogurt in your kitchen. Let's get real here! You can easily buy all of these ingredients at the market.
I love Oui Yogurt, which reminds me of the creamy yogurt sold in France. You can even serve it directly in its small glass containers. Even our two sons love these and they are worth the extra cost.
Any local bakery will have croissants and imported French jams like Bonne Moman and many others are easy to find or use a local jam. As for fruit, use whatever is in season at the farmer's market; berries, melons, etc. Cut them up and serve in small fruit bowls or compotes.
Toast your croissants under the broiler. I like to split them and cover the insides with butter and reawaken them with just a bit of heat. If you can't juice your own orange juice which is the best elixir of all in the morning certainly a juice from the refrigerated aisle at the market will work in a pinch.