Feb 1, 2011

Happy Crepe Day: La Chandeleur

Crepes in Paris
Thin, sugar and butter soaked crepes are so heavenly I’d tape them to my body and pluck them off as snacks throughout the day if it weren’t too obscene a thought. This is why February 2 might just be my favorite day in France. The French have a knack for turning any occasion into a reason to eat. In the Christian community, February 2 is Candlemas, La Chandeleur in Frencha celebration of the presentation of Jesus at the temple. To stomach focused France, it's also “Crepe Day” and for Christians and non-Christians alike, egg cracking, feverish whisking and luck-determining crepe gymnastics are the activities du jour. 

With a coin held in the writing hand, hopefuls flip the first pancake from the pan into the air with the other.  If the crepe lands back in the pan, good luck follows. If it falls to the floor, the dog is the lucky one.

Roland, an ice cream maker and dear friend who hails from the Dordogne region of France, told me that his grandmother used to have him take a crepe to the chicken coop on La Chandeleur, to encourage the egg Gods to be generous.  "You know the chickens only ate half the crepe,” he revealed.   

I leaned in, eager to unravel the mysterious will power of these French fowl.  “Why?” I whispered.

“Because I ate the other half on the way to the chicken coop,” he laughed.

I really do love the French. And their crepes.   
 (This article is featured on Leite's Culinaria February 2).  Click here for recipes and article.                                                     

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