FOOD HISTORY: Puff Pastry

Puff pastry, a light pastry made by repeatedly layering pastry dough and fat (usually butter) to form a thin dough which, when baked, causes steam pockets to form that separates the dough into multi-layered and very flaky pastry, originated in France in 1645. It's inventor was an apprentice pastry cook named Claudius Gele, whose sick father could only eat a prescribed diet consisting of water, flour and butter. Claudius, a good son, wanted to bake a delicious bread for his father using only those three ingredients. Gele apparently forgot to cream  the butter into the flour before adding the water so, to mask his mistake, he placed lumps of butter into the already formed dough, folded the buttered dough over several times and formed this dough into a loaf to bake. The Pastry Chef, who watched Claudius' preparation of this "dough", warned him not to bake the loaf because he thought that the butter lumps would melt when heated in the oven and run out of the bread. In spite of the Pastry Chef''s concern, the loaf was placed in the oven. When removed from the oven, much to the great and very pleasant surprise of both Claudius and the Pastry Chef, the loaf had been "puffed" into thousands of flaky layers in the oven. Thus, Puff Pastry was born, even though it was not named Puff Pastry until, much later. When Gele finished his apprenticeship, he left for Paris where he was hired by the famous Rosabau Patisserie. At Rosabau, he perfected his new pastry invention; now calling it, "Puff Pastry". Gele became rich and famous in Paris but later moved to Florence, Italy where he brought his Puff Pastry (Pasta Sfoglia -  in Italian) to the Mosca Pastry Shop. Eventually, other Italian bakers learned how to make Puff Pastry and some of these bakers brought the invention  to Austria where it became popular. When a strike of bakers in Copenhagen, Dennmark went on too long, Danish pastry shop owners imported Austrian bakers into Denmark, where Puff Pastry was transformed, further, into Danish Pastry.