Although it might seem that there is nothing complicated about making a baguette and that they all taste somewhat similar, don’t tell the French that.
On Wednesday, May 10, a number of local bakers gathered in Paris to present their own brag to the jury. The winner of the said competition, which was held for the thirtieth time this year, has the honor of supplying the Elysee Palace with his baguettes for one year and will receive 4,000 euros (95,000 crowns) on top of that, reports CNN.
“It is a real honor for us,” Franck Thomasse, the president of the trade union organization Syndicat des boulangers du Grand Paris, confided on Saturday before the ceremonial announcement.
“It’s an extremely important competition for them (bakers), they’re completely devoted to it,” adds Olivia Polski, who has chaired the competition for almost ten years.
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The jury, which evaluates the appearance, aroma, baking technique and, of course, the taste of the baguette, was eighteen this year and was made up of previous competition winners, officials from the aforementioned trade union, food bloggers and six Parisians who were randomly selected from more than 1,200 applicants.
The victory did not surprise the baker from Sri Lanka
A total of 176 baguettes appeared in the competition, of which 40 were immediately rejected by the jury because they were either too short, long, heavy, light, or the right type of flour was not used for their production.
The winner was Sri Lankan baker Tharshan Selvarajah from the Au Levain des Pyrénées bakery.
“We already finished third in 2018. Since then, we have been thinking that next time we will definitely win, or at least finish second,” Selvarajah told CNN, adding that the victory was not such a surprise to him.
And the secret to his success? The best type of flour, a great recipe and baking individual batches every 20 minutes to keep the pastry hot and fresh all the time – the baker with the best baguettes in Paris didn’t reveal more. Despite winning the baguette competition, you can buy a baguette in his bakery at a favorable price of 1.35 euros (32 crowns).
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