An assortment of petits fours
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French assortment of petits fours
A petit four (plural: petits fours) is a small confectionery or savoury appetizer. The name is French, petit four (French pronunciation: [pə.ti.fur]), meaning "small oven".
Petits fours were traditionally made in the 18th century during the cooling process of coal-fired brick ovens to take advantage of their latent heat, thus exploiting coal's high burning temperature and expense relative to wood.
Petits fours come in three varieties:
In a French patisserie, assorted small desserts are usually called mignardises, while hard, buttery biscuits are called petit fours.
See also 
- Garrett, Toba. Professional Cake Decorating. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2007. Page 226.
- Kingslee, John. A Professional Text to Bakery and Confectionary. New Delhi, India: New Age International, 2006. Page 244.
- Maxfield, Jaynie. Cake Decorating for the First Time. New York: Sterling Pub, 2003. Page 58.
- Rinsky, Glenn, and Laura Halpin Rinsky. The Pastry Chef's Companion: A Comprehensive Resource Guide for the Baking and Pastry Professional. Hoboken, N.J.: John Wiley & Sons, 2009. Page 214.