It is well known in France, many pastry chefs have invented the wonders we enjoy today in French pastries but also all over the world. Sometimes when we eat a pastry we don't really know its origin.
Here is a top 3 of French pastries that the French love!
Top 1: The Paris-Brest! A cake for a bike race
The story goes that the Paris-Brest was invented by the French pastry chef Louis Durand at the request of Pierre Giffard. Who is Pierre Giffard? He is the founder of the bicycle race that took place from Paris to the city of Brest in 1891. He is said to have asked this pastry chef to create a cake in homage to this race and its runners.
This is why the Paris-Brest has a round shape that represents the shape of the bicycle wheel.
Top 2: The tarte tatin! An origin full of legend
Legend has it that the Tatin sisters, owners of a hotel-restaurant in Lamotte-Beuvron, accidentally invented it. One version is that one of the sisters, while trying to make an apple pie, forgot to put the dough on and added it on top during the baking process. Another version of the legend says that she would have spilled the dough when it came out of the oven. Wanting to make up for her mistake, she would have picked up the tart and served it upside down.
However, according to the Grand Larousse Gastronomique, this is indeed a legend. Indeed, it was never the result of a mistake because this recipe has existed for many generations before the two sisters, and was handed down from mother to daughter. The tart was therefore popularised in their restaurant at the end of the 19th century.
Top 3 : The chocolate lightning bolt! Or otherwise known as "duchess' bread".
This pastry is very much loved in France, but where does it come from and why does it have this strange name?
Chocolate eclairs are neither lightning nor thunder-coloured. Yet here are the two main reasons behind their name.
The first reason is that even before having this name, they were called "Duchess's bread" because the recipe is simple and very much appreciated by high society.
The second reason is that they are eaten very quickly, as they are said to have been eaten "in a flash". A second version, very close to this one, is that they were so appreciated that they were sold "in a flash".