We talk a lot about the landscapes in Brittany, the beauty of its coasts and the charm of its villages. But Brittany has more than one string to its bow! And the gastronomy is one of them. Besides, after reading this article, it will certainly be your first argument to visit Brittany! Let us convince you by presenting you 18 specialties from Brittany that will make your mouth water.
Let’s start with THE specialty from Brittany: the buckwheat pancake. The traditional one is filled with cheese, ham and an egg, but you can let your imagination run wild and add just about anything you want to your galette!
But if you want to eat the galette like a true Breton, take a cold galette, spread some mustard on it and add a grilled sausage! It may seem weird at first, but it’s a real treat.
Another must in Brittany: the butter-sugar crepe. In Saint-Malo, and more generally in Brittany, you can find crepes at every street corner!
Of course, if you don’t like butter-sugar, it is possible to customize your crepes! The most greedy add chocolate spread, but to stay in Brittany, why not garnish them with salted butter caramel?
Know that homemade crepes are offered every morning on the Abers buffet. And they are cooked at the minute so that you can enjoy them hot!
Salted butter caramel exists in different forms in Brittany. We know of course the candy, which can be melting, creamy or hard.
But for a few years now, it has been found more and more as a spread, and this little sweet is delicious on pancakes. We offer them on the breakfast buffet and also for sale.
A small dry cookie that goes perfectly with coffee or tea, the palet breton is very crumbly, but its good little taste of butter will not leave you indifferent, for sure. The palet is recognizable thanks to its thickness, between 1 and 2 cm.
These cookies take their name from the famous “palet”, a game highly appreciated in Brittany, which animates the summer days.
Do we still need to present the Kouign Amann? This little Breton pastry is famous far beyond the borders of Brittany, and even France!
It is prepared with a lot of butter and a lot of sugar! By the way, “kouign amann” in Breton means “butter cake”. In reality, it is simply a bread dough that is folded like a puff pastry.
It is not a Breton speciality to be tested if you are careful about your weight, on the other hand, no hesitation if you want to treat yourself!
For the little story, the Kouign Amann would have been created following a mistake, a bit like the tarte tatin. That’s how history works sometimes.
You’ve probably enjoyed a crêpe dentelle with your coffee or tea. You know, those little crispy, crumbly cookies that can be coated with chocolate?
Like the kouign amann, crêpes dentelles were invented following a mistake: a Breton cook let a very thin crêpe cook too long, which gave birth to a crêpe dentelle!
How to talk about Breton specialties without mentioning seafood? The ideal is of course to taste them on the spot, a few hours after they have been caught. Crab, spider crabs, periwinkles or oysters, the choice is wide according to your preferences.
Depending on the season in which you visit Brittany, the choice may differ, for example, oysters are plentiful during winter, but there are far fewer in summer. Yes, it’s mussel season!
Another rich specialty, the Breton cake is a great classic! Ideal to accompany a coffee or simply to finish a meal, the real Bretons add honey or jam for a little fruity touch, but plain, it is also very good.
The recipe is simply based on white flour, sugar, eggs and of course butter, the trademark of Brittany! The tradition says that the top of the cake must be squared, but everyone is free to do what he wants.
Probably one of the greatest successes of the Breton gastronomy, the far breton is declined in various options.
The most classic one is eaten with prunes, but we also love the version with apples, or simply plain for those who don’t like fruit.
To give you an idea, the Breton far is very similar to the clafoutis, but its flan is much firmer.
Specialty of the city that bears the same name in Morbihan, the Andouille de Guéméné is a delicatessen that can be eaten hot or cold. It is made of pork offal which is smoked, then the whole thing is cooked in water.
Its taste can be quite strong and is therefore not to everyone’s liking, which is why it is increasingly offered in thin slices as an aperitif.
First drink of our list of the best Breton specialities, the Lambig is a cider brandy which is obtained after distilling cider in a still.
An ageing of several years in wooden barrels gives it a very particular taste.
This alcohol was very appreciated by the Breton farmers in the past. Be careful though, the alcohol content is between 40% and 50%, which makes it a very strong drink to be consumed in small doses.
To be consumed in moderation, the Chouchen is an alcoholic drink made from honey. There are different varieties, which allows it to be consumed on various occasions: as an aperitif or as a digestive, it goes very well with seafood, and even foie gras!
We have to name a brand for this Breton specialty, because it has become an institution over the years.
Created in 1915 by Jean Hénaff, the traditional recipe is made with pork, fumet, Guérande salt and various spices. As with all good pâtés, it is eaten with a good slice of thick bread, as a snack or as an aperitif.
We don’t hear much about Kig-Ha-Farz, yet it is a traditional Breton dish. At the time of its creation, it was considered the dish of the poor, because it did not use noble products.
The particularity of Kig-Ha-Farz is its cooking method, which is done in canvas bags, called Far (you understand the link). Breton speciality originating from the region of Léon, it is composed of beef, bacon, carrots, white cabbage, leeks and turnips, all flavoured thanks to the buckwheat flour that we love so much in Brittany.
Finally a Breton speciality made with fish, which strongly looks like the bouillabaisse!
Originally from Finistère, Cotriade is called like this to designate the contents of a pot. It includes red mullet, sea bream, pollack, conger eel, but also mussels, all accompanied by potatoes and flavored with garlic and shallots.
It is a rich dish that we love to taste after a day spent at sea for example.
Much more than a Breton specialty, the cracker is a Malouin specialty! Created in Saint-Malo, this crunchy cookie can be eaten with salt or sugar.
The old Bretons cover it with salted butter and dip it in coffee for example. But the miniature version can be covered with tuna rillettes or Hénaff pâté for example and eaten as an aperitif (yes, we like aperitifs in Brittany 😉 )
We had to finish this list of the best Breton specialties by the one we couldn’t do without: salted butter.
As you can see, we love salted butter in Brittany, we put it in all our pastries (in quantity) and we grill our vegetables and meats in a good little hazelnut butter.
Originally, butter was salted by the farmers, because it allowed a better conservation. Finally, it has become a real treat! In Saint-Malo, the Bordier house has made it its specialty and produces different varieties: seaweed butter, pepper butter, vanilla butter…
So, which one do you prefer? Don’t hesitate to come and try them in Saint-Malo! You will find a large part of these specialties on our breakfast buffet!