A Brief Story of Le Gateau Basque

A Brief Story of Le Gateau Basque

If you are wondering about the origin of le gateau Basque, it revealed its delicious smell in a welcoming home southwest of France. The kind of smell you follow out of curiosity and excitement. The kind of Holiday smell that makes you happy.

Let’s peek into the kitchen in the 19th century. You would see a mother taking the time to show her daughter the right moves and teach her how to make this cake called in Basque "etxeko bixkotxa", the house cake. That you know as the Basque cake.
For centuries, it proudly sat on the dessert table on Sundays and happy days. The honor here goes to les maîtresses de maison* who have perpetuated the tradition until people talked about it.

Marianne Hirigoyen, a pastry chef from Cambo-les-Bains, decided to take this cake out of her kitchen and display it on the market stall in Bayonne in the 19th century. She said:

“We need to bring this savoir-faire to all inhabitants of the region!”

Cambo-les-bains, a city renowned for the quality of its thermal baths, was then talked about for its cakes which even bore the name Cambo cake for a while.

It is said that Napoleon 3rd and Eugénie de Montijo would have come in 1856 and multiple times later to taste it.

Like many French gastronomic dishes, a Basque cake festival was created in 2003, a brotherhood in 2009, guarantors of the original recipe as well as a museum. That’s right, the Basque cake museum.

maîtresses de maison* stands for housewives

Join our Community!

Follow us on @breadstoryny to stay current on all things Bread Story.