It's Christmas time in Paris and to me it means chestnut & buche de noel season. Chestnuts is one of my absolute favourite flavour of all times and the mere fact of seeing the dazzling varieties of chestnut desserts in pasty shops makes my heart skip a beat. Buche de Noel is the ubiquitous Christmas log cakes that signifies the last rush of holidy shopping to me. The traditional buche typically looks like a festive jelly-roll tempered with plastic figurines and too much chocolate frosting. However, most of the modern buche found in pastry shops in Paris are streamlined and so very chic (check out page 18 of the Fauchon Christmas 2005 catalogue). Of course, getting a full-size buche is not at all practical for me during my trip so I was glad to sample the miniature version of individual size called buchette.
More likely than not, pastry shops offer more than one flavour of buche de noel and being chestnut season, a marron flavour buche is a given. For example, I had the buchette de poires et marrons from Fauchon for breakfast this morning and it was a very tasty chestnut concoction. The tiny cubes of poached pears in the middle made for a nice contrast of flavour. I have two more buchettes from Laduree (chestnut and coffee). I will definitely report back!