Chicagoan Headed to Olympics of Bread Baking

By Laura Oppenheimer in Food on Jan 8, 2008 5:30PM

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Anytime an event is held every few years instead of annually, it takes on some added importance (we're thinking, for example, presidential elections, the Olympics and the World Cup). In the culinary world, this event is the Coupe De Monde De Boulangerie, a bread-baking contest that takes place every three years in Paris. This year, it's part of the Europain exhibition, held March 29–April 2.

How it all goes down, via Slashfood:

Started in 1992, the Baking World Cup gives the three competitors — from twelve teams — eight hours to make from scratch all of their breads. (E)ach teammate is responsible for a specific category; baguette and specialty breads, vienoisserie (which is all of the croissant and puff pastry type breads), and artistic design (this person spends the day making a showpiece from bread). This year there is an additional category called savory selection which requires that all three teammates work together to create a selection of savory rolls, pastries, and small sandwiches.

The last time the Coupe De Monde De Boulangerie was held, Team USA returned victorious in competition, and we're especially rooting for them this year since Chicagoan Peter Yuan, owner of La Patisserie P is on the three-person team (sponsored, of course, by the Bread Bakers Guild of America). Yuan will be competing in the vienoisserie category. We think he'll be right at home on the team, based on his extensive competition history.

Image of vienoisserie via the BBGA.