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Ten Fun Croissant Facts

Crescent-shaped pastries have probably existed since classical times (they resembled the crescent moon or the horns of a bull, both worshipped at different times).
August Zang, who brought the croissant to Paris, is still known in France, but for bringing... the baguette. (Which he probably didn't.)
The kipfel was already being made in many different flavors and shapes when one type became the croissant, which remained plain through most of the twentieth century (until the appearance of chocolate croissants, almond croissants, ham-and-cheese croissants, etc.)
Nineteenth century croissant came in two sizes (one sou, 36-37 grams, and two sous, 60-80 grams).
Before the croissant took over, France had a whole range of colorfully shaped rolls: braids, baskets, birds, bears, pine cones, pigs, rats, goats, walruses, even (though accidentally)... phallii.
Charles Dickens and Henry James both mentioned the croissant.
The glaze on croissants has been obtained by milk, butter, egg yolk or steam.
The croissant was not made of puff pastry until the twentieth century.
Before the modern croissant, puff pastry was used as a garnish or shell, not to eat on its own.
Croissant started as a luxury product, but by the end of the nineteenth century, it was middle-class (the rich preferred a good brioche).

Interested in the baguette? Visit About the Baguette.

Or return to August Zang and the French Croissant.