No trip to Paris is complete without a visit to L'as du Fallafel. It's not French food, and it's definitely not haute cuisine. It's a dive, but they make some really tasty falafels and the price is even better (7 euros for a falafel and a soda). I'm not the only one who thinks so, either. During lunch time, there is always a wait for a table; and I've never been there when there wasn't a line to purchase a falafel to go.
(The To Go Window)
I had to get my falafel fix in before tomorrow when my friend from Israel gets here; he's supposed to bring me a great fallefel recipe, so I can make them when I'm not in Paris. (Moshe: if you're reading this, don't forget my falafel recipe.) He's not going to want to go there because going to Paris and eating a falafel for him is like an American going to Paris and eating a hamburger. (Oh no, I've just used the American/hamburger stereotype.) But when we all lived here while going to school, he at first made fun of us Americans going to the L'as du Fallafel. After a few months though, he asked me to go with him because he was missing falafels. And, he kept going back.
Falafels are what I would call fried chickpea (garbanzo beans) meatballs. They take the chickpea flour and add spices and herbs; then fry them. They are then stuffed into a pita type bread along with cucumbers, cabbage, and sauteed eggplant. They top it with tahini sauce, and a spicy sauce if you want. You're supposed to eat the HUGE falafel only with your hands. I can't do it without spilling sauce and a few falafel balls all over me, so I use a fork. I guess this is a big no no because Moshe, rolls his eyes and scolds me when I use a fork. Then he starts looking around to make sure he doesn't see anyone he knows. Heaven forbid he is seen with someone eating a falafel with a FORK! Messy and good, and also vegan. Aren't most things that are messy also good? In any case, no matter what kind of budget you're on while visiting Paris, you should definitely make L'as du Fallafel one of your stops. Sunday's are one of it's busiest days as it's in the Marais (the Jewish section of Paris---and nowadays also the gay and trendy & chic section) and most stores in this area are open on Sundays. The address is 34 rue de Rosiers; the closest metro is St. Paul.