Un Dimanche à Paris :: L’Ami Caouette

By Paris Pâtisseries in Pastry Reviews, Un Dimanche à Paris
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Un Dimanche à Paris :: L'Ami Caouette

During my 2010 pastry adventures, the idea crept into my head that one of the great patisseries really should craft a pastry for me. While some might say that I’m far too offbeat in my critiques to ever merit such an honor, others would recognize that my extreme patronage and adoration of the ultra-luxe Parisian pastry shops does make the notion more than a little reasonable. And I do help bring the world the magic of Parisian patisseries, after all. Why not reward the effort? All I needed was a plan to help speed this process along . . .

Now I’d noticed, as many people have, that the French essentially don’t “believe in” peanut butter. Beloved Stateside, wouldn’t it be fantastic to see peanut butter introduced into French pastry? So before I landed here in April, my scheme was simple: incessantly mention the magical pairing of peanut butter & chocolate or peanut butter & chocolate & caramel. If I talked about it often enough, someone would take “the hint”. Un Dimanche à Paris became the shop that bore the brunt of my harping – from the owner, Monsieur Cluizel, to the director, Perrine, and to the chef patissier himself, Quentin Bailly, I referenced what the French call beurre de cacaouette until, well . . . . until L’Ami Caouette was born!

Un Dimanche à Paris :: L'Ami Caouette

I’m still not sure whether Quentin created this to shut me up or because he was truly intrigued by the challenge of peanut butter. But one day I walked into the shop, and Perrine was like, “You need to see what Quentin is working on.” And I was all like, “What?” And she said, “It’s chocolate . . . with peanut butter!” So we went over to stare at him working on it all, and he quickly arranged the constituent pieces on a plate as a rough prototype for my review. I have to say I was a little surprised by the chocolate + peanut butter + apricot pairing, but he is the master chef. So I nibbled on each of the various bits, as he looked on. Then I gave him some feedback on the weight of the flavors, as well as on the textures – and back to the kitchen he went to continue refining the recipe. Several days later, the finished product was sitting in the pastry case, ready to turn Parisians on to the magic of peanut butter!

Un Dimanche à Paris :: L'Ami Caouette

You might be wondering how I would review it? I can’t. To be fair, I have to recuse myself from this review. If I say anything good, then how can you really trust me? If I say anything bad, how could I show my face at Un Dimanche again? I can just tell you what’s in it: Roussillon apricots, peanut butter cremeux, apricot moousseux, apricot marmalade, peanut “blanc d’oeuf”, and a little dacquoise.

Un Dimanche à Paris :: L'Ami Caouette

So, yes, absolutely go to Un Dimanche à Paris now and grab yourself a L’Ami Caouette so that you can assess it on your own. If Perrine is behind the counter, you can also request it merely as “The Adam”. But make sure to come early in the day, as it’s seriously already become one of the hottest sellers.

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14 Responses to “ Un Dimanche à Paris :: L’Ami Caouette ”

  1. Kaleo says:

    That is so exciting! Though your demure denial of a personal review I respect, I must say that gorgeous photography makes its own pronouncement quite clearly…heck, you may deserve a series of pastries. "What's in that case?" "Those are The Adams." They could even call it The Ad(d)ams Fami– I'll shut up now.

    • Technically, they also have a macaron I helped inspire . . . and another pastry I by so often that Perrine sometimes also calls it The Adam. I'm just happy to have them be so receptive to at least this one idea of using peanut butter. Quentin was very cool to humor me.

  2. Elle Marie says:

    I'm taken down all sorts of notes for the next time I visit family in Paris.

  3. w28 says:

    Sorry Adam, I have to disagree with you on this one. I tried it last time, it just looked so gorgeous in the showcase that I couldn't resist but to buy one and eat it straight away. As much as I like peanut butter, and chocolate, AND APRIOT…the way it's combined somehow is a little bit awkward. This is just my personal opinion, I'm sure there are others who enjoy it very much. I think instead of a milk chocolate shell as a tart, I'd prefer a real pate a sucre, and the two flavours combined in a sphere, the peanut butter half (I actually tasted milk chocolate cream), stole away all the other half of the apriot flavor. And when it comes to the bottom part, I felt like I was only eating apriot marmalade with nibs of peanuts inside.
    Yes, it's a good idea, and esthetically amazing, but the flavors are not too well balanced. It needs more modification.

  4. Ted Niceley says:

    I'm not saying the apricot doesn't rule but, I wonder if you could stroll in reading a book on , say, RASPBERRIES???
    Or wearing a raspberry beret?
    Would the chef scratch his head and say "now that's an acid that peanut butter and chocolate would love….
    That must be nice, to inspire pastry and have it named after you…
    How dare "they" say Paris doesn't have it's charm and warmth toward the ugly ( not you, of course!) American!
    Thanks for the report, Adam!
    Eat some good savory food this weekend, washed down with some great pastry, of course!
    Salut
    Ted

  5. Joel jason says:

    Congratulations adam!!!

  6. Gene Gessert says:

    Congratulations. This must be the first time that any Frenchman has paid the slightest attention to an American, since Benjamin Franklin persuaded Louis XVI to sign the Treaty of Alliance in 1778. You are also to be commended on your high moral standards in refraining from saying anything positive about this pastry. I’m glad that it is “Seriously already become one of the hottest sellers.”

  7. Raphaël says:

    It must be said that the name of your pastry comes from a song from the famous french songwriter Serge Gainsbourg (see : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lowuIou_B8Y). It's one of his lighter pieces, obviously :)

  8. croquecamille says:

    Um, just so you know, Blé Sucré has been making a peanut butter/chocolate pastry for years.

    • It's not that peanut butter was not being used at all in Paris or couldn't be found in the supermarket; I'm pretty sure most any flavor/pairing can be found somewhere. My issue was that none of the high end shops were using it currently. Quentin had used peanuts a few times in recent months, but he just hadn't made the move to peanut butter until now.

  9. Paul Metay says:

    I Tasted Yesterday l'ami couette among 5 other pastries at un dimanche a Paris. and must say it was not my favorite. The look gorgious but there are far too many combined tastes in such a little cake that one can hardly fine the global note.
    what I loved in it was just the combined milk chocolate mousse with the peanut butter taste.

  10. Amrita says:

    Good Gawd Adam! I've missed all of your pastries so much, since I've been gone. So many more of them to drool at.

    And well done! You sir, are epic. That piece looks gorgeous when cut-through…and do go ahead and review it…I'm pretty sure it tasted better than good. Unless the Frenchman screwed up the classic combination in ways only they can.

    - Slobbering on the Keyboard, yet again.

  11. Katarina says:

    I actually really enjoyed eating pb & apricot jam sandwiches as a kid. I will definitely be giving this one a try when I get a chance.

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