Indulgence Since 1401
Discover St Pierre’s rich, sweet baking history
The Normans arrived in France, and with them, the secrets of making butter. Recipes for traditional brioche – passed down through the generations to St Pierre’s bakers today – may also have originated here.
Crêpe pancakes first appear in Brittany, getting their name from the Latin word for curled –‘cripsa’. They were made using buckwheat, ground into a batter, added to a hot surface with butter, and pressed into a round shape – before being flipped and folded.
White flour is favoured today, but the recipe and method used by St Pierre remain largely the same!
Crêpes grow in popularity, traditionally served on Candlemas (La Chandeleur) a religious festival in France held on February 2nd. The day soon becomes known as “Le Jour des Crêpes” – “The Day of the Crêpes”. We now celebrate “National Crêpe Day”.
The first recorded mention of the word ‘brioche’ is found. It could have derived from the words bris and hocher – to knead and to stir. Or it might have been a reference to Brie, the cheese originally contained within the bread, or to the inhabitants of Saint Brieuc – the Briochines – who baked the delicacy and shared it around France.
Crispy, rich snacks are sold on the streets outside of churches in Belgium. Barley and oats were easy ingredients to access, and these tasty Belgian waffles – as they soon became known – eventually evolved into the two distinct varieties – Brussels waffles and Liege waffles. St Pierre today specialise in baking the Liège waffle.
As famine grips France, bread becomes too expensive for the average family to afford, and butter becomes a status symbol. With the amount you use reflecting your wealth. Brioche is an enriched bread, and a French princess (that may or may not have been Marie Antoinette) encourages peasants to eat it.
Carrs Foods (the original name for St Pierre Groupe) is founded, bringing together master bakers who share their recipes, knowledge and secret learnings – passed down through generations of European baking. They have the ambition to be true innovators in the bakery field – and to deliver the very best European baked products to customers around the world.
Carrs launch the St Pierre brand in the UK, combining their expertise in food science with authentic European recipes, the tastiest ingredients and the best baking methods. Their range of French produced brioche rolls, pains au chocolat, croissants and baguettes bring a little taste of Europe to your home.
St Pierre goes from strength to strength, growing in popularity and in range. Customers enjoy more brioche products and new delights from Europe – including traditional crêpes and waffles. Demand overseas grows too, and the St Pierre team launch into the US markets in 2014. It’s an immediate success, bringing an authentic taste of Europe directly to the USA.
St Pierre is now the fastest growing ambient European Bakery brand in the US*, chosen by families for its delicious and authentic taste. The range now includes over 30 different baked products, showcasing the finest European recipes and flavours. St Pierre is sold in more than 12,000 stores worldwide.
*Source: Nielsen ACN report, to December 30th 2017 AOC