The whole family had a great time chowing down on all kinds of foods during our trip to Paris: crusty baguettes, croque monsieurs, camembert, croissants, pain au chocolat, crepes and more. Sadly, we didn't get a chance to have snails or frogs' legs, but we did manage to sample some new cuisine -- at the local McDonald's.
I know what you're thinking -- eating at an American fast food restaurant in France?? It's not as crazy as it sounds. I've always known that international McDonald's restaurants often carry menu items customized to local palates -- fried chicken with rice and spaghetti with sweet sauce and hotdogs are top sellers in McDonald's Philippines -- so I wanted to see (and taste!) for myself what sorts of things Parisiennes were ordering with their French fries (or frites) and drinks. And during the McDonald's Family Getaway I attended in June, I learned about all the healthy menu items available in kids' Happy Meals in other countries, so I knew the kids would be able to eat a well-balanced meal. Besides, we had been driving all day and wanted someplace fast and inexpensive to eat (in a city where you can spend 30 Euros for 5 drinks at a cafe, that's important!).
Alfie and I had a beef patty on something that looked like ciabatta bread, with tomatoes, cheese and -- oh yummy, yummy day -- sauteed mushrooms. Instead of ketchup, we got little packets of frites sauce (it tasted like aioli or garlic mayonnaise).
And the Happy Meals? Pardon my French, but they were freakin' awesome! Aside from the usual burger and Chicken McNugget options, kids could also have a Croque McDo, which is basically a croque monsieur, which is available everywhere in France.
Toasted bread with ham and cheese... guess which sandwich my kids chose?
In the US, kids can choose Apple Dippers with caramel sauce instead of fries; in France, their apples have grapes mixed in, and I didn't see any caramel sauce packets around.
Other Happy Meal options include applesauce in an easy-to-slurp package and yogurt. All healthy stuff that my kids love to eat.
The dessert menu included a McFlurry with Daim candy bars, fruit crumble, pineapple spears, chocolate mousse and chocolate muffins.
It was a great experience knowing that you've just eaten at a McDonald's, but still feel like you've eaten local food!
Want to find out more things I learned about McDonald's? Click here to get read about my visit to the McDonald's Headquarters during the McDonald's Family Time Getaway, enter to win a McDonald's Prize Pack.