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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

French Boulangerie or Patisserie?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Every town in France, regardless of size, has at least one boulangerie (bakery)
 that sells freshly baked croissants, baguettes, éclairs, and/or tartes.  
To be called a pâtisserie, the bakery must employe 
a licensed maître pâtissier (master bakery chef) 
who has completed extensive training 
and passed a written examination.

The Maison COLLET Boulangerie/Pâtisserie is in Paris. 
 Notice the two freshly baked baguettes partially wrapped in paper 
that the customer is hand carrying. 
That's how baguettes are carried all over France.  

The green bag she is carrying contains carefully packaged pastries.  
Even the smallest shops hand wrap pastries with the same care.


I do not remember whether my first tarte aux fraises (strawberry tart) 
came from a pâtisserie or a boulangerie, 
but I do remember how wonderful it tasted.  
Each time I return to France, I wonder if the strawberry tarts 
will be as good as my mind remembers them 
or if I have just fantasized the taste.  
Each return trip, I am delighted to find a tarte aux fraises 
does taste as wonderfully as I remember!

I see five framboise (raspberry) tarts.  
But, wait!  I see four tarte aux fraises with kiwi!

The boulangerie in Carsac, France [population 1473 in 2008]
 is on the main street in town.  
In September 2011, I traveled with my sister and her husband to Paris 
and to the French Dordogne region.  
We were excited to find that the local boulangerie in Carsac sold 
baguettes, tartes, croissants, and pain au chocolate (bread with chocolate inside).  

Chances are your kitchen cannot legally be called a pâtisserie, 
but you can still make a tarte aux fraises with the recipe below. 

CHOW online recipes

Botanic Bleu has French-style white stoneware tart dishes 
and pie plates this Christmas season.

If you make a tarte aux fraises, write a comment about it. 

Do you have a favorite American pâtisserie?  
Post a comment telling about it.

 I would love to hear from you.

One of my favorite American pâtisseries is la Madeleine in Arlington, Texas.

See la Madeleine on Facebook at
Until next time, keep watching for pâtisseries in your neighborhood.

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