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Paris bakers attempt world's longest baguette

Genevieve Mansfield
Genevieve Mansfield - [email protected]
Paris bakers attempt world's longest baguette
Baguettes during the annual 'best baguette in Paris competition', in 2023. (Photo by ALAIN JOCARD / AFP)

A dozen French bakers have set their minds to beating the world record for the world's longest baguette - hoping to join a long list of French records from stretchiest aligot to biggest tarte tatin.

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On Sunday, 12 Paris bakers will attempt to beat the world record for the longest baguette, as part of the Suresnes Baguette Show, which was organised by the French confederation of bakers and pastry chefs. 

The current record is held by Italian bakers, who in 2019 baked a 132.6 m long baguette - roughly the height of the Great Pyramid at Giza (which is now about 138.5 metres tall). 

By contrast, the standard French baguette is between 60 and 70 centimetres long, and roughly 5-7cm in diametre.

The French boulangers will have some challenges - they'll need to knead all of the dough and then put it together on site. The only ingredients allowed are flour, water, yeast and salt. In order to count, the bread will have to be at least 5cm thick across its entire length.

According to the press release for the event, cooking the giant baguette will take at least eight hours.

Once it's prepared, it will be up to the judges from the Guinness Book of World Records to determine if the record was beaten or not.

Then, the baguette will be cut up and Nutella will be spread across it, with part of it shared with the public and the other part handed out to homeless people.

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What about other French world records?

There are official competitions every year to mark the best croissant and baguette, plus plenty of bizarre festivals in towns across France.

The French also like to try their hand at world records. 

Stretchiest aligot - If you haven't come across aligot before, it's basically a superior form of cheesy mash - it's made by mixing mashed potato with butter, garlic, cream and cheese.

The traditional cheese used is Laguiole but you can also use tomme or any cheese that goes stringy when stretched. That stretchiness is very important - it makes aligot is a popular dish for world records. 

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In 2020, three brothers managed to stretch the aligot 6.2m, and apparently in 2021 they broke that record too (though unofficially), by adding an extra metre.

READ MORE: 5 things to know about aligot - France's cheesy winter dish

 

And in 2023, in Albi in southern France, local media reported that a man had made the world's largest aligot (not the stretchiest). He reportedly used 200kg of potatoes and 100kg of Aubrac tomme cheese. 

Cheesy pizza - A Lyon-based pizza maker, Benoît Bruel, won a spot in the 2023 Guinness Book of World Records for creating a pizza with 1,001 cheeses on top of it. 

 
 
 
 
 
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Biggest raclette - In March, the city of Saint-Etienne in France claimed the world record for the 'largest raclette'.

There were 2,236 people who participated, and the raclette involved 620 kg of cheese, 350 kg of cold meat and one tonne of potatoes. 

 

Largest omelette - Unfortunately, France does not hold this title anymore, though it did in 1994, when the town of Montourtier in the département of Mayenne cooked up an omelette on a giant pan with a 13.11m diameter. 

Currently, the title is held by Portugal, according to Guinness. In 2012, the town of Santarém cooked an omelette weighing 7.466 tonnes.

Still, France cooks giant omelettes all the time. Every Easter, the 'Brotherhood of the Giant Omelette' cooks up one, cracking thousands of eggs and passing out portions to the people in the town of Bessières.

Largest tarte tatin - The French town of Lamotte-Beuvron also beat a world record in 2019 for making the largest tarte tatin, which weighed 308kg. 

This isn't the first time the French have experimented with gigantic apple pies. In 2000, the country made history (and the Guinness Book of World Records) for creating an apple pie that measured 15.2m in diameter. It used 13,500 apples and required a crane to be lifted (as shown below).

(Photo by MICHEL HERMANS / AFP)

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