Wednesday is National Croissant Day & we LOVE croissants! Is there anything better than a hot cup of coffee and a buttery, flaky croissant? Plain Croissants, Almond Croissants, Chocolate Croissants… all so wonderful it’s impossible to choose a favorite.
Croissants are widely celebrated, so it is only fitting that they have their own day. An article in le Figaro magazine in Paris referred to the nine pillars of pleasure (volupt) for appreciating a croissant. The author of the article asked two well-known Parisian patisseries, Pierre Herme and Laurent Duchene to analyze what makes the heart of the croissant beat:
The nine pillars of pleasure from “le Figaro magazine” are:
- The layers (le feuilletage) look for the layers, lots of space, not flat and smooth; crusty exterior, soft inside
- The soft interior (la mie) is light and agreeably honeycombed. When you eat it, it should have crumbs. When you tear off the cornered end, the soft interior should resist a bit and resist a little. It should not be doughy.
- What you hear ( l’oreille) Ideally you should hear the crunch of the crust. It should crackle the whole while you are biting into it. As Pierre Herme says: you should hear the croissant suffer! (On doit entendre la souffrance du croissant!)
- What you taste (en bouche) You should taste the amount of butter rather than the sugar. However, the subtle taste of salt is the crowning point of a good croissant.
- What makes a bad croissant (et un mauvais croissant?) Look to see if the bottom of the croissant is whitish; it was not cooked long enough or was poorly baked. Is the croissant flat is appearance and doesn’t seem to breathe or is it oozing butter?
- The smell (l’odeur) This can be a giveaway, if the croissant smells of yeast or the metal baking sheet, it is not good. It should give off an agreeable smell of creamy butter.
- Shelf life (sa dure de vie) The croissant has a very short shelf life: five or six hours; outside of this, it becomes stale. Don’t eat the croissant too hot, it loses its taste, its heart, it fades.
- The ingredients (les ingredients) The choice of butter is first and foremost. Pierre Herme uses Viron flour, fleur de sel de Gurande, butter from the Viette (Charente) region, course sugar and of course water. But, mineral water.
- The season (la saison) Does the croissant have a season? From the end of October to the beginning of November is not a good time to buy a croissant. At this point the wheat harvests are blended (the old with the newly harvested). The dough is more difficult to control.
So celebrate the croissant with us! If you purchase any 2 croissants on Wednesday, January 30th, receive a free small coffee! Enjoy!