The Wood-Fired Blog

A Good Supermarket Baguette?

If it’s a good supermarket baguette, I guess I’m not back in California. Bad supermarket bread is one of my favorite pet peeves, and I’ve been writing and blogging about it for years on FB.com. As an American born in the later stages of the Baby Boom, I grew up with Wonder Bread, Swanson’s TV dinners, and all that goes with along with that. But even the French are suffering, with a growing number of neighborhood bakeries throwing in the towel and buying frozen baguettes from the large industrial supermarket suppliers, and baking it locally. The little dimple pattern on the bottom of the loaf is a sign of frozen dough — and a really awful loaf of bread.

But not in Holland! The baguette below is from the C1000 supermarket chain (this one was from Delft), and it’s really darn good. I think it is on par with the expensive micro-bakery baguette you can find in California, and it doesn’t even compare with supermarket bread. Apples and oranges. The dough was never frozen and it was baked on site. Amazing.

How do they do that?

One thought on “A Good Supermarket Baguette?

  1. Actually, the little dimples are usually from the bread pan it was baked in, and have nothing to do with frozen dough. See, for example, the baguette pan in the KAF catalog here: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/items/baguette-pan .
    Frozen par-baked bread was, in the Bay area developed by Glenn Mitchell at Grace Baking in Richmond. His work on a process to par-bake, then freeze, Pugliese is what got Costco in the fresh bread business. It is an award-winning product.

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