Toronto and I are celebrating our 1 year anniversary in 20 days, and yet today is the first time I’ve bothered to step foot in Nadege: one of the city’s most talked-about patisseries. It was far too early in the morning for macaron and cake, but I am a huge fan of Kouign Amann. This flaky, caramelized pastry, was perfect. Crispy on the outside, slightly gooey on the inside, and with not another soul sitting in the shop at this hour on a Monday morning… I couldn’t ask for more.
The origination of Kouign Amann according to Wikipedia:
Kouign-amann (pronounced [,kwiɲaˈmɑ̃nː] (kween a-mon), Breton pl. kouignoù-amann) is a Breton cake. It is a round crusty cake, made with bread dough containing layers of butter and sugar folded in, similar in fashion to puff pastry albeit with fewer layers. The resulting cake is slowly baked until the butter puffs up the dough (resulting in the layered aspect of it) and the sugar caramelizes. The name derives from the Breton words for cake (“kouign”) and butter (“amann”). Kouign-amann is a speciality of the town Douarnenez in Finistère, in the west of France, where it originated in around 1860.
Even though it’s said to have been around since the mid-nineteenth century, it’s really only become common and ‘fad-like’ here in North America for the past few years. Unlike odd creatures such as the “Cronut” (which I have not yet tried, and am still deciding about)… this flaky gem is the real deal and not some strange mixture of cookie/croissant/donut/car-parts/what-have-you! If your eye brows are raised it’s because you haven’t heard of said “Cronut”. To satisfy your curiosity, here’s a photo courtesy of Foodbeast.com. Yes, this really is a ‘donut-croissant’. Deep fried croissant dough. As if croissants aren’t bad enough for you.
I shouldn’t judge having not tried it yet, but I’m thinkin’…. what’s next? Fast food burgers that use meat sandwiched between more meat, instead of a bun? OH WAIT! We do already have that! Thanks KFC!
The Cronut: Click HERE to read more from Foodbeast.com
Want to have a look at the bunless heart attack in a paper bag from KFC too? Hell, you might as well have the cronut for dessert after the ‘double down’ bunless heart-attack-wich.
The Double Down: Click HERE to read more from Outdoorherbivore.com
So the question remains: Tradition vs. Fads. I’m not big on fads. ‘Gazilllions’ of cupcake shops, sandwiches with no bread, deep-fried car parts… blehhhhh. Not buyin’ it.
I’ll stick to the real deal, thanks. Nadege satisfied me, and I’m glad I got my butt out the door and went this morning. Recommended.
Here’s a peak inside:
My Kouign Amann, partially devoured:
Now I’m off to make, for the first time ever, Challah bread from scratch. The sponge starter (dubbed Shelly) was made last night, and had already burst out of it’s sealed plastic container within two hours! Stay tuned for my Challah recipe and the braided loaf itself…