Tuesday, April 7, 2009

European Peasant Loaves

Still considering myself in the "learning" mode for baking artisan breads, this morning I made my first European peasant loaves. The recipe, from the book Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, promised to make beautiful artisan loaves with a more rustic flavor than their basic recipe by adding rye and wheat flours to the dough. The authors of the book say that these whole-grain country-style loaves are reminiscent of the rural French, pain de champagne, and Italian, pane rustica, made by the European poverty class as the white, more refined flours were reserved for the upper class in their society.

One for my neighbor and one for my kitchen, my European peasant loaves were placed on the baking stone in my hot oven made humid by the addition of a pan of water placed on the lower shelf.
Baking the loaves.
Cooling on the rack.
I enjoy a more peasant-style bread so looked forward to taste-testing my first slice. Delighted, this European peasant bread is perhaps my favorite yet!

Curious as to what similar breads sell for locally, when we were in Haggens doing our shopping over the weekend, we took a minute to stop by their bakery to check out their artisan bread selection. Would you believe, loaves similar to these were selling for $3.99 and $4.99 each!

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