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托福阅读背景:牛角面包的历史

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2016年03月16日

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托福阅读背景:牛角面包的历史
  牛角面包这种法国美食是很多人的心头爱。它的法语名字croissant是“新月”的意思。新月形是牛角面包的经典造型,这其中的缘故,就要牵扯到奥地利与土耳其之间的一场战争……

  The croissant is a widely known and enjoyed kind of pastry made from leavened laminated dough and baked plain or with some sort of filling or topping, most commonly chocolate.

  The word itself is translated as “crescent” into English, which is the shape most typically associated with this flaky pastry, although it can be found in other forms as well.

  There are countless stories and legends about where this pastry originated and how it was made. In 1683, Vienna (the capital of Austria) was under siege by over a hundred thousand Ottoman Turks. After several months of trying to starve the city into submission, the Turks attempted to tunnel underneath the walls of the city. Fortunately for the entire city, some bakers hard at work in the middle of the night heard the sounds of the Turks digging and alerted the city’s defenders. This advance warning gave the defenders enough time to do something about the tunnel before it was completed. Soon, King John III of Poland arrived at the head of an army that defeated the Turks and forced them to retreat.

  To celebrate the end of the siege and the part they had played in lifting it, several bakers in Vienna made a pastry in the shape of the crescents they had seen on the battle standards of the enemy. They called this new pastry the “Kipfel” which is the German word for “crescent” and continued baking if for many years to commemorate the Austrian victory over the Turks in 1683. It was not until 1770 that the pastry came to be known as the croissant.

  In that year, Marie Antoinette, a 15-year-old Austrian Princess, married King Louis XVI of France. To honor their new queen, the bakers in Paris made some “kipfels” of their own. The only difference was that they called it by the French word for crescent, “croissant”. The pastry proved as popular in Paris as it had in Vienna and Parisian bakers have been making it ever since as have bakers around the world who learned it from the Parisians.

  The flavor of a croissant should be intensely butterywith a natural dairy sweetness. It should not taste like added sugar or be cloying. It should be well-seasoned, but not so salty that you can’t imagine eating it with jam or preserves. The ideal crust should be distinct from the softer interior. It should be extremely flaky and shatter when torn or bitten into. It should be extremely crisp, but not crunchy or tough. Each layer of flaky pastry should virtually melt on the tongue, but not feel greasy in your hands. It should be an even, golden brown color all around.

  The interior should be feather-light with many layers. It should be tender and moist but not gummy ordoughy. The layers of dough should show plenty of stretch and separate gently from each other when you pull at them with your fingers.

  Today, the croissant is both a symbol of French culture and tradition.牛角面包这种广受欢迎的糕点是对擀成薄片的发酵面团进行烘烤制成,或者是纯面团,或者配上馅料和装饰配料,通常是巧克力。

  croissant这个词在英语中译为“新月”,新月形是这种酥饼最普遍的形状,不过也有做成其他形状的牛角面包。

  关于这种面包的起源和做法有数不清的故事和传说。1683年,维也纳(奥地利的首都)被一万多名奥斯曼土耳其人围困。他们先是截断粮食来源,逼迫这座城市屈服,几个月后,他们又尝试从城墙下挖地道进行偷袭。幸运的是,一些在夜里工作的面包师听到了地下的动静,并通知了城市的守军。这个情报让守军有足够的时间在隧道完工前挫败了敌人的阴谋。不久,波兰的国王约翰三世带领部队赶到,击败了土耳其人,迫使他们撤退。

  为庆祝城市的解围以及他们所起的作用,维也纳的几位面包师制作了一种新月形糕点,这是他们在敌人军旗上看到的图案。他们将这种新糕点命名为“Kipfel”,这是“新月”德语的叫法,之后许多年,它一直被用来庆祝1683年奥地利对土耳其人的胜利。直到1770年,这种糕点才以牛角面包的名字流传开来。

  在那一年,15岁的奥地利帝国公主玛丽•安托瓦内特嫁给了法国国王路易十六。为了向新王后致敬,巴黎的面包师制作了他们自己的“新月形面包”。唯一的区别是,他们用“新月”的法语来为之命名,那就是“croissant”。这种糕点在巴黎和在维也纳一样受到欢迎。从此,巴黎的面包师就一直做这种糕点,而全世界的面包师都是从巴黎学会了制作牛角面包的方法。

  牛角面包应该是奶油味浓郁,有一种天然奶制品的甜味。它吃起来不应该是感觉加了糖或者甜得腻人。它的味道应该均衡,但不会太咸,无法配着果酱或者蜜饯来吃。理想的牛角面包应该是外焦里嫩。面包皮应该非常酥脆,但是不会嘎吱作响或太硬。面包的每一层应该是入口即化,但是拿在手里又不会觉得太油腻。面包在整体上应呈现一种均匀的金褐色。

  面包心应该很轻盈,有很多层。它应该很柔软潮湿,不黏也不软稠。面包的各层应该有足够的延展性,用手去拉时,能够很容易分开。

  如今,牛角面包已经成了法国文化也是法国传统的一种象征。

  Vocabulary:

  leavened 发酵的

  laminated 薄片的,层压的

  filling 馅料

  topping 装饰配料

  flaky pastry 酥饼

  siege 围攻,围困,围城

  advance 预先的,事先的

  lift 撤销,解除;结束,停止

  buttery 涂有黄油的,有黄油性质的

  cloying 倒胃口的,使人感到腻烦的

  crunchy 嘎吱作响的

  gummy 黏性的

  doughy 又软又稠的


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