Saturday, April 11, 2009

Fancy Breads, Fancy Prices

While visiting the Bellingham Farmers Market for lunch, I was looking through the crowd as my meal was being prepared and spied these large, round loaves of bread at a booth in the next row over. Still working on my "unofficial" price comparison for artisan bread, I decided to visit that booth.
Would you believe, $10 for the whole loaf, $5.00 for a half loaf and $2.50 for a quarter? I wondered why someone would buy only a quarter of a loaf of bread, and then wondered what would happen to the remaining three-quarters of that loaf. Would it ultimately end up drying out and being tossed? Other types of bread available were medium sized loaves of oatmeal walnut bread selling for $6.50 each, a sour cherry lemon bread for 6.50, a cinnamon twist bread for $7.50 and a potato bread for $5.00 a loaf. Fancy breads!Loaves of ciabatta were selling for $4.75 each, and their long baguettes, $3.50 a piece. Fancy prices!
Inspired by the fancy breads I had seen at the market, I headed back to my own kitchen and decided to create some sort of fancy, comparable loaf of my own. I used some of the peasant bread dough already in my refrigerator made from one of the recipes found in my copy of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, added some fancy gourmet olives I had on hand and made what I called my Fancy European Peasant Bread with a Hint of the Mediterranean.
Here's how I did it!

I wonder if my Fancy European Peasant Bread with a Hint of the Mediterranean is "fancy" enough to yield such a fancy price.

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