Monday, October 1, 2007

Bread

The first and most important thing one must do upon moving to any new town is locate the nearest purveyor of good bread. Such discovery is paramount. If you have landed in one of the more fortunate cities, the task could be no more than a pleasant stroll in the afternoon when the autumn sun is out. Walk past some leaves. Falling and spinning. Kick some pebbles down the stone lined path. Where is the bakery? Around the corner? And if it’s not, then a simple query of any well-looking person in the neighborhood will surely yield the necessary information. But in other cities (too numerous to mention), the same endeavor might take the form of a three-year odyssey, filled with all the death and destruction, revenge feelings and all that great sorrow that can be expected of any such goal-driven adventure, in which the goal is never (can never be) attained. If it had been a different goal, perhaps the story would have gone differently. If it had been, say, a jelly donut, or perhaps a Stouffer’s menu item. Even a nice cracker. But not bread. Sadly, your friends cannot help you. When the gods have not smiled in the place where you are there is nothing and no one can help you. This I have learned.

From The Guide:

The key to a good bread and butter experience is good bread and butter. For bread, a strong flavored French loaf/baguette is recommended. The way to know if one has the right bread is whether the top end (the end poking out of the grocer’s bag) is still largely intact by the time your carriage reaches home. If this be the case, then indeed this was not the right bread. But if it has been torn at, repeatedly, as if by a savage and starved creature, with an unexplained, but obvious desire for the highest quality baguette, then truly, this is the right loaf.

4 comments:

Lili said...

Were you watching me?? I'm so embarrassed, but you're absolutely right. It is the best way to know if it is the right bread. Irish butter is a delectable choice to have with the bread should it get to your table.

The Metrosexiest said...

Bread Lineage Detail, from the cookbook BREAD by Beth Hensperger.

"The United States boasts a wide variety of traditional breads. Groups of immigrants began to arrive here directly following the American Recvolution, bringin with them their favorite breads: fluffy potato loaves from Germany, Danish pastry, croissants from France, buck wheat blini from Russia, hearty rys and flat breads from Scandinavia. Many commercial bakeries in this country founded their success on the country lovales of Italy and France. Our Southern heritage gave us corn breads and delicate biscuits. Native ingredients such as corn pecans, blueberries, and cranberries have resulted in uniquely American breads."

Lili said...

do arepas and buneulos count??

Cold Bacon said...

they count, if you send them to me.