One of the chief impediments to my happiness in Lubbock is the lack of a really great bakery in this town. We are limited to grocery bakeries, donut shops, cupcakeries, and a couple of other pretenders. Ideally, we would have a little French bakery where I could grab a croissant in the mornings before taking the subway to work. But we have neither the subway nor the bakery.
When I was in Provo, I visited a wonderful bakery, Eliane French Bakery, for breakfast. They don't have a website that I know of. I imagine that it's because they don't speak English very well and that's how authentic the French bakery is. But I imagine a lot of things. I'm a romantic.
Wendy and I sampled a few things. First, the pain au chocolat, which was amazing, and second, the croque-monsieur, which was equally amazing.
A croque-monsieur is a ham sandwich with cheese. Typically the sandwich is covered in a Mornay sauce and grilled or broiled. When I made a croque-madame, a croque-monsieur with a fried egg on top, I made the Mornay with Gruyere. The croque at Eliane's had cheese on top, but not in a thick sauce, and the cheese was melted but a little crunchy. Magnifique.
We saved the best for last. The best was an almond croissant. The almond croissant at Choice Market in Brooklyn was among the best food I ate in New York. However, Eliane's had it beat.
Almond croissants are similar to regular croissants, but they have an almond filling and are usually covered in toasted almonds and powdered sugar. Here's a recipe for them that I intend to try soon.
In the interest of full disclosure, I bought the croissant to take back to Mom, who elected not to go to the bakery with Wendy and me. You know what they say about the best laid plans. I thought I could take one bite and stop, and Mom wouldn't mind if I tried her croissant. However, one bite of the croissant with its creamy almond filing, and I was hooked. I corrupted Wendy with it, too. Then I started rationalizing: "Mom won't know we were going to bring her this," and "Well, Mom could have come with us." By the time I'd finished rationalizing and eating, there was only half a croissant left. Sorry, Mom, I know you raised us better.