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Traditional Poilâne bread

2013-01-03

poilane-1.jpgFresh baguette is a world-wide symbol of France. No tourist in France will avoid a baguette with cheese and a bottle of red wine. Among Parisians, besides the baguette, the bread Poilâne keeps its pride of tradition and quality.

And not only bread has made the name of Poilâne famous, their croissants and chocolate breads are delicious, the most buttery among the prestigious Parisian bakeries. Their apple cakes are often commented as "à tomber par terre" (make you fall down). Trpoilane-2.jpgaditionally dressed sellers, with a pleasant dose of Parisian snobbery fit into the the design of the bakery, decorated in brown and white colours. In Christmas season the inside of the bakery is decorated with hundreds of "sablés" (shortbread cookies) hanging in the windows, give you even cozier impression than the fairy-tale shop windows of the Galeries Lafayette shopping mall.

The bread Poilâne produced with a special procedure of dough yeast, can be bought in the supermarkets all over France. However, if you buy it directly in the bakery, you have a pleasant experience from buying it and the freshness is guaranteed.

History of the Poilâne brand, described on their website, tells the story how everything started in Saint-Germain-des-Près, when in 1932 Pierre Poilâne opened in Paris his firpoilane-3.jpgst bakery. Since then nothing has changed, the procedure of bread production is the same, dough is hand made from yeast, bread is baked in the oven heated by wood. Bread consists of four ingredients: water, flour, salt and yeast. Salt comes from the salt bogs in Guérande, flour is grinded by a grindstone from the best types of cereals. When you buy the pastries, you carry them in a paper bag, with written explanation in French and English on various cereals, their history and characteristics.

Some say that the Poilâne bread has a little acid flavour. I agree with thosepoilane-4.jpg who appreciate this bread just because of this taste and smell, and even my children prefer it to the baguette. At home the Poilâne bread is toasted, so that it’s crispy, so that the butter and cheese melt on it, and nothing represents the weekend mornings more that the long-lasting breakfast with long slices of Poilân bread with cheese, butter and home made currents marmelade or a duck pate.

"Sablés" in Christmas time have the form of the galloping deer, in the Saint Valentine season the shape of hearts and in Easter they have the shape of bunnies. In this January season of "galettes des rois", traditional Epiphany cakes with almond filling, in the Poilâne bakeries you will find one of the best. Many Parisian „brasseries“ propose in their menu "tartines" – the Poilâne bread slices with a sheep cheese and salad or a smoked salmon.

The Poilâne bakeries can be found at the following addresses in Paris: Saint-Germain-des-Pres (8 rue du Cherche-Midi), pri Eiffelovke (49 bld de Grenelle), vo štvrti Marais (38 rue Debelleyme) And two bakeries are in London.

Maria Dopjerova-Danthine, Paristep

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