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Monday, February 6, 2012

Sub Zero Temperatures, Pancakes and Proverbs

Sub zero temperatures caused havoc all over France.
 Flights were cancelled at Nice airport, schools were closed, and even the busy A8 motorway was affected.

One good thing though, the bad weather coincided with Fête de La Chandeleur (Candlemas) also called La Jour des Crêpes – Pancake Day.
February 2nd is a feast day and the main pancake eating day in France; 40 days after Christmas, this is supposedly the day Joseph and Mary presented baby Jesus at the temple.
Gourmets, kids, everyone loves pancakes; this French tradition just happened to fall on one of the coldest days this year.

Making Perfect Pancakes

Everyone has a basic recipe for making pancakes but here are some tips for making them perfect.
n  Adding a tiny bit of crème fraîche will make a smother batter.
n  To make them lighter and even more wafer thin, use half milk and half water.
n   Make sure your pan is moderately hot.

And, you don’t just toss pancakes in France.  Tradition says that the person making the pancake must hold a coin in his or her left hand while flipping the pancake... If the pancake lands back in the pan, it means good luck and prosperity for the cook and his family.

Back to the weather – here are some proverbs connected with Pancake Day.
n  If it rains at Chandeleur, it will continue to rain for 40 Days.
n  If February is clear, winter is behind us.
n  If the Chandeleur is over cast, winter will last another 40 days.

I prefer this more positive Candlemas proverb -- Eating crêpes on Candlemas will bring a year of happiness.

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