Saturday, March 22, 2014

Who Invented Crepes Suzette?

Crepe Suzette is a sweet crepe recipe known for its citrus aroma, and brandied taste. Often times, it's served with light flames to give it a tantalizing touch.

It's a popular dessert in French restaurants and highly sought after by self-professed foodies.

But did you know that it was invented---by accident?

Henri Carpentier was a 14-year-old assistant waiter in 1895. He was preparing a dessert for the Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII of England.

Here's his account, from the source, itself. 

"It was quite by accident as I worked in front of a chafing dish that the cordials caught fire. I thought I was ruined. The Prince and his friends were waiting. How can I begin all over? I tasted it. It was, I thought, the most delicious melody of sweet flavors I had ever tasted. I still think so. That accident of the flame was precisely what was needed to bring all those various instruments into one harmony of taste.. He ate the pancakes with a fork; but he used a spoon to capture the remaining syrup.

He asked me the name of that which had eaten with so much relish. I told him it was to be called Crepes Princess. He recognized that the pancake controlled the gender and that this was a compliment designed for him; but he protested with mock ferocity that there was a lady present. She was alert and rose to her feet and holding her little shirt wide with her hands she made him a curtsy.

"Will you," said his majesty, "change Crepes Princess to Crepes Suzette?"

Thus was born and baptized this confection, one taste of which, I really believe, would reform a cannibal into a civilized gentleman. The next day I received a present from the Prince, a jeweled ring, a panama hat and a cane."---"Life A La Henri--Being The Memories of Henri Charpentier" by Henri Charpentier.

This popular crepe dish was created, by accident. If you ever want to impress a date, thank Henri Charpentier whenever you order him/her a Crepes Suzette.