February 12, 2016

12/02/2016: The team from South Korea: World Bakery Champions

South Korea's bakery sculpture of an archer on horseback
From Saturday 6th to Tuesday 9th February 2016, 12 international teams competed in an effort to win the 'Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie' that was held as part of the Europain & Intersuc trade show at Paris-Nord Villepinte, France.

Performing live in front of an enthusiastic audience of supporters and professionals, the contestants from South Korea - Chang-Min Lee (Baguette and Breads of the World), Jong-Ho Kim (Viennoiserie and Savoury Baking) and Yong-Joo Park (Artistic creation) - as well as the teams from Taiwan (2nd place), and France (3rd place) pulled out all the stops to earn a place on the podium for their country.

A selection of the Koreans' Viennoiseries and savouries
The 12 teams competed against each other in the following categories: Baguette & Breads of the World, Viennoiserie & Savoury Baking, and Artistic Creation. For this latter, the team from South Korea conjured up an astonishing sculpture celebrating the representative sport from its country - archery on a running horse - by integrating, amongst other items, miniburgers and salted viennoiseries that were extremely creative and delicious.

The contestants’ technical skills enabled them to improvise and come up with the most surprising creations, both when using the ‘mystery ingredients’ that were drawn randomly at the last minute, and for the imposed recipes for bread and savoury baking of the world.

Following the drawing of lots, South Korea prepared:

  • Bread of the world: Hallah (a speciality from Israel)
  • Savoury bakery of the world: Kanelbulle (speciality from Sweden)
The Koreans improvised using the ingredients revealed at the last minute to prepare:
  • Bread containing oat flakes, cardamom, anise (seed) and orange
  • Savoury baking product with orange flower water, apricot syrup, coffee powder and blackcurrants
For the latter recipes the contestants had the choice among a selection of flours, fermentation methods and doughs.

'Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie' Podium: 
  1. South Korea: Chang-Min Lee, Jong-Ho Kim, Yong-Joo Park  
  2. Taiwan: Chung-Yu Hsieh, Yu-Chih Chen, Peng-Chieh Wang
  3. France: Cyrille Martin, Déborah Ott, Claude Casado
South Korea achieved a place on the podium for the first time in the history of the contest, so finishing in first place is quite an achievement. 

Taiwan achieved second place in this edition with an impressive sculpture on the national sport: baseball. This was an improvement on its 2012 performance when it won the Bronze medal. 

France, World Bakery Champion in 2008, came in third place thanks to an artistic and delicate creation on cycling.

The other countries that took part in the competition were: Brazil, Canada, China, Japan, Mauritius, the Netherlands, Russia, Turkey, and the United States.

Baseball is big in Taiwan - and this was reflected in their bakery sculpture
In order to take part in the next edition of the 'Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie', in four years’ time, South Korea, Taiwan and France will have to put their title back into play and take part in the international selection of the Louis Lesaffre Cup to try to win their place for the grand final in 2020.

The contest according to Christian Vabret, Jimmy Griffin and Thierry Marx
Christian Vabret, President of Honour, Thierry Marx, patron to the 2016 edition, Jimmy Griffin, president of the jury and the 6 international experts (nationalities not represented during the contest) who sat on the jury all agree that the competition was tough but the result gave the most exceptional creations.

Some of the Taiwanese team's Viennoiserie and savoury creations
"I had announced that this 2016 edition would possibly be the very best given the level of the contestants and creations," says Christian Vabret.

"We saw some brilliant teams, well prepared, with the quality this entails, with men and women who understand the spirit of the contest, and results that are beyond exceptional. The most difficult challenge was deciding among them, and the task of the jury was not easy. We wished for an outstanding contest, and that is what we got! Watching the teams at work was a sheer delight and the result was superb!"
From Le Tour de France...
"The quality of the competition was impressive," says Jimmy Griffin.

"Each time I come to the Coupe du Monde it gets better and better! This year was no exception. It’s amazing to see the level of technical skill and excellence. The decisions were very difficult to make because there are so many aspects to judge in different categories. The standards were very high and it has been a huge honour for me to be here in France and in Paris, the home of the croissant and the baguette, as president of a very experienced and excellent jury."
"This contest is packed with talent, there’s a lot of work involved and the recipes are inspiring in an artistic and artisan way! One of the problems for bakers today is to combine two hats and two brains in a way: one as an artist to create new recipes and one as a tradesman to produce these recipes 365 days a year. Working with a quality-based approach will win new customers and sales by offering the best possible quality. For bakers this is even more difficult than for chefs, because we create value by using very few raw materials: water, flour, salt, and a pinch of leaven. That is what is really at the core of the artisan bakery trade," says Thierry Marx.
...to La Tour Eiffel
Top experts gathered on stage at the 'Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie'

A new feature this year: the roundtables brought together prominent personalities in the trade such as Eric Kayser, Jean-Pierre Crouzet of the CNBPF (National Confederation of French Bakery and Pastry) and Dominique Saibron, who discussed topical themes and issues facing the bakery industry. 

Visit the Coupe du Monde de la Boulangerie site HERE.    

The Global Miller
This blog is maintained by The Global Miller staff and is supported by the magazine GFMT
which is published by Perendale Publishers Limited.

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