Baking French - pâtisserie, boulangerie, viennoiserie...

During July, the Franschhoek Valley celebrates its French heritage. Even in Covid times when the charming little village might not be its festive self, the culinary delights the valley is renowned for, get a French interpretation.

The Pierneef à La Motte pastry team joins in the festivities with French-inspired baking available from the La Motte Farm Shop. Pâtisserie, boulangerie and viennoiserie are available to enjoy as delicious tea-time treats, dainty desserts and for all the occasions when you enjoy a freshly-baked slice of bread!

But what are the differences between the very specific baking disciplines the French are so passionate about?

Pâtisserie refers to sweet French pastries and also the shop where they are sold. In France and Belgium only a pastry shop with a licensed maître pâtissier or master baker, is allowed to be called a Pâtisserie. Typical pâtisserie such as Mille-feuille, Macarons, Paris-Brest en Croquembouche are light, delicate and seductively sweet.

Boulangerie is what we usually understand as a traditional bakery. Here the focus is on bread although pâtisserie and viennoiserie may also be sold. The French love bread and they even have a law that determines the ingredients that may be used! Only two ingredients can be added for variety to the basic four ingredients of flour, yeast, salt and water and they are rye and Ascorbic acid. The ingenious French bakers therefore have to use their kneading, proofing and baking technique to differentiate between the various French breads. To be called a Boulangerie, the breads like Baguette and Pain de campagne have to be baked on the premises.

Who does not enjoy reading your weekend paper with a freshly baked croissant in the hand? Although these delightful pastries are regarded as French, they have their origin in Vienna and therefore the word Viennoserie refers to breakfast baking in the style of Vienna, Austria. The style is somewhere between pâtisserie and boulangerie and other than the decadent croissant, there is of course also the lovely brioche - similar to our own mosbolletjies!

The La Motte Farm Shop reopens on 16 July with a variety of delicious French favourites!


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