If there was any time ripe for comfort food, it’s now. Indeed, the warm smell of baking bread has been wafting across the country since March, when Covid lockdowns sent us home for safety. The pandemic baking boom led to flour and yeast shortages last spring, but ingredients are now available for aspiring bakers. Which is all to the good.
As Vox writer Emily VanDerWerff put it, “The world is scary and uncertain. Bread is just science. Or it’s magic. Or it’s both.”
THE GLUTEN’S GOT IT
True baking aficionados know that the King Arthur Baking Company makes some of the finest flours for baking bread. Jane’s Cake & Chocolate Supply in La Cañada Flintridge packages and recommends its unbleached Sir Lancelot Hi-Gluten Flour at the tasty price of $4.99 for four pounds. (Forgive me, gluten-phobes, but yum!)
King Arthur’s Sir Lancelot Hi-Gluten Flour is available at Jane’s Cake & Chocolate Supply, 645 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada Flintridge. Call (818) 790-5900 or visit JanesCakeAndChocolateSupply.com.
YOUR DAILY BREAD MAKER
The Breville Custom Loaf Bread Maker is so popular, it’s sold out on the manufacturer’s website, but fear not. Williams-Sonoma still offers it for $299.99, although you may have to wait for delivery due to high demand. Why so high? Reviewers praise its ease of use, even dough mixing and reliability. Banana bread, anyone?
And at 142 Lake St., Pasadena. Call (626) 795-5045.
A LABYRINTH OF PANS
Dedicated bread bakers will want to expand their repertoire with shapes popular in la belle France. You can inject a dash of je ne sais quoi into your recipe with the USA Pan Triple French Baguette Pan ($30). Or whip up your own rolls, biscuits and brioches with the ceramic Emile Henry Crown Bread Baker ($134.95), made from Burgundy clay.
Both pans are available at Sur La Table. You can visit the Pasadena location at 161 W. Colorado Blvd. through Sunday, when it closes permanently, or shop online at SurLaTable.com. Call (626) 744-9987.
BACK TO BASICS
Now that you’re mastering the traditional task of home baking, store your bread in retro style with the charming Home Basics Steel Bread Box in fire-engine red (on sale at Target for $24.99).
Home Basics Steel Bread Box is available online at Target.com.