Why les crêpes de la chandeleur in France

French crêpes in France

The Candlemas festival is held every year on the same date, February 2nd.

But why do we eat crêpes de la chandeleur in France?

This festival is above all religious. Indeed, it is celebrated every year 40 days after Christmas, day of the presentation of the baby Jesus in the Temple. The name “Chandeleur” comes originally from the “candles”, traditionally used on this occasion. In churches, they are blessed, replace torches and are kept lit to signify light, purity and to ward off evil. The faithful often take one home and display it in their windows on February 2.

The round shape and golden color of the crêpes represented the solar disk and the return to the light. Indeed, at the beginning of February, the days are gradually getting longer. The consumption of crêpes would thus be a tribute to the cycle of seasons and more precisely to the arrival of Spring which announces better days.

This festival is also accompanied by superstitions. If the farmers did not make crêpes at Candlemas, the wheat would be bad the following year. To ensure that the harvest would be good and the finances prosperous, they had to flip the first crêpes by throwing it in the air with their right hand while holding a golden Louis in their left hand, making sure that it fell perfectly into the pan. The crepe was then placed on top of a cupboard.

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