Préfou, the Vendée’s garlic bread
The Préfou today is often served as a starter or with an aperitif but its origin is rather an unusual story. Starting with a simple piece of bread dough which was placed beside wood fired ovens. This simple gesture helped to determine if the oven was hot enough to cook the bread. At this time nothing was wasted, so once the small piece of dough was cooked It was rubber with butter and garlic... and then eaten!
The simple “Origins” of the Préfou- garlic bread
The Préfou was born many years ago in the Vendean countryside near Fontenay le Comte when ovens (fours in French) did not have thermostats. In those days, we cooked in wood-fired ovens and tested the ovens temperature with a piece of bread dough.
Once this little ball of dough was cooked, we knew that the oven was hot. In order not to waste the bread, the little ball of dough was rubbed with garlic and butter before it was eaten. This bread was original called "prefour" which now has become "préfou".
The Préfou and its recipes go well with a French aperitif
Nowadays, the Préfou is known throughout France, as a delicious accompaniment (served hot) when having an aperitif. There is still the authentic butter and garlic flavour, but many new seasonings have been created with goat’s cheese, Roquefort, chorizo, or sun-dried tomato ... all equally tasty!
Some good addresses to taste this Vendean Garlic Bread
LES P'TITS VENTRES DE TERRE IN LA ROCHE SUR YON
The restaurant serves traditional Vendean dishes. Here, the prefou has been revisited by the chef and is presented as an appetiser or as a starter. Opened in 1980, the reputation of Les P'tits Ventres de Terre is well established throughout the Vendée.
Read more about Les P'tits Ventres de Terre
BOULANGERIE GEORGES IN SAINT GILLES CROIX DE VIE
In 2019, the Boulangerie Georges, barely a year after its inauguration, received the Prefou Gold medal from the Vendée’s bakery and pastry federation. A real recognition for these connoisseurs, who have chosen to use local product when creating their homemade produce.
LA LUTINE À l'ORBRIE
The Lutine bakery in the Southern Vendée, not far from the birthplace of Prefou makes delicious treats.
Read more about La Lutine