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October 16, 2019 5:43 AM   Subscribe

 
I've had more of those than I would have thought. Some great stuff in there, and lots to put on my list of stuff to track down. Also happy to see the Montreal bagel. I'd never had one until a couple years ago, and now I feel like I'm being punished a little anytime I'm served a New York style bagel instead.
posted by Fish Sauce at 5:55 AM on October 16, 2019


Now I just want to eat every one of those breads until I become a Creature of Gluten.
posted by xingcat at 5:56 AM on October 16, 2019 [22 favorites]


I'm going to just use this as a bucket list from now on.
posted by soren_lorensen at 6:04 AM on October 16, 2019 [15 favorites]


Is Serbian proja superior to U.S. southern cornbread? It seems like the only straight cornbread mentioned in the list, and since I've never had proja my interest is piqued.
posted by Philipschall at 6:07 AM on October 16, 2019


Happy World Bread Day, friends! Let the puns begin! (Unless you're all just loafing.)
posted by ALeaflikeStructure at 6:12 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


I need to eat all of these. Including the ones I've had before. I'm starting with pupusas for lunch this afternoon from a nearby restaurant that has Salvadoran specialties.

Also want to plug another amazing butter-filled Yemenite bread: kubaneh. I made the recipe from Modernist Bread and it is so, so good. And yes, you do need to work allllll of that butter into the dough.
posted by carrioncomfort at 6:17 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


It's more like “50 of the world's breads”.

Some of them are genuinely good (Icelandic rúgbrauð does have a subtle sweetness to it, and Ethiopian injera is a fine thing to mop up a spicy curry/stew with), though others seem to be placeholders, there mostly because it'd be embarrassing to omit their place of origin as a country devoid of noteworthy bread.

Australian damper, for one, seems to be something that was once eaten out of bitter necessity, now occasionally made in the name of national pride, despite not being particularly appetising compared to modern alternatives; they don't sell mass-produced damper in the supermarkets, nor artisanal damper in gentrified bakeries. Meanwhile, English crumpets are generally a machine-extruded supermarket product and, whilst a serviceable comfort food, aren't done any favours by comparison to continental neighbours like baguettes or ciabatta.
posted by acb at 6:24 AM on October 16, 2019 [9 favorites]


This is a remarkably fantastic list (color me surprised coming from CNN).

Brb, going out to the bakery.
posted by jeremias at 6:25 AM on October 16, 2019


The best bread that I've ever had came from the North Star Bakery in Chicago, now long closed. It was a round, chewy loaf that I could have had every day for the rest of my life.
posted by Halloween Jack at 6:29 AM on October 16, 2019


English crumpets are generally a machine-extruded supermarket product and, whilst a serviceable comfort food, aren't done any favours by comparison to continental neighbours like baguettes or ciabatta.

The industrially produced version of a thing is not the thing itself. Just because we have shitty frozen bagels doesn't mean that bagels made properly in a bakery are also shitty. Homemade crumpets are pretty dang good.
posted by carrioncomfort at 6:31 AM on October 16, 2019 [17 favorites]


Now I just want to eat every one of those breads until I become a Creature of Gluten.

Alas, you are in thrall to the sin of gluten-y.
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:35 AM on October 16, 2019 [14 favorites]


It's more like “50 of the world's breads”.

I concur. I've eaten my share of interesting baked goods and pancakes (blins and Borodinsky bread are sorely missing from the CNN list) and I have always returned to the bakery around the corner for my morning bread with the smug certainty that I wouldn't trade it for all the pretzels, crumpets and pitas of the world.
posted by hat_eater at 6:36 AM on October 16, 2019


German pumpernickel is indeed complex and flavorful but man is it a chore to eat.

What you really want is a fresh warm crispy brötchen roll to eat with your bratwurst while standing in the parking lot of the local supermarket (where the best brat stands are always located).
posted by JoeZydeco at 6:48 AM on October 16, 2019 [6 favorites]


I was expecting to find nothing from the UK but then they included crumpets, so we win.

But I want them all.
posted by dowcrag at 6:49 AM on October 16, 2019


My only complaint with this is that there are no recipes and NO BHATURA!

Edit: There is luchi which at least is in the same family. So I take my complaint back (with reservation).
posted by Ashwagandha at 6:50 AM on October 16, 2019 [3 favorites]


Besides the milk man, we used to get home delivery from the bread man. I guess various stuff forced them out of business. I don't miss that milk man -- he ran over my Scat Car and never paid for it -- but I wonder whether bread delivery could come back if they delivered stuff like this? I would definitely eat a different fancy bread every day if someone came to my home with it mornings. I wouldn't even care which one they brought each day -- surprise me. But watch out for my toys.
posted by pracowity at 6:53 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


It's a good list! If you're not impressed by the pita, you need to find a local middle Eastern store for some fresh sangak (or honestly whatever flat bread is most recently baked). There's a steep drop off in quality as the hours pass (we literally freeze ours before the second day).

...that said, I googled damper bread and it doesn't sound great. And I'm a little surprised by the lack of pogacsa (Hungary), maybe they decided pão de queijo covered that beat?
posted by grandiloquiet at 6:54 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


My new ambition is to make a bologna sandwich with bolani bread.

Regular German rye bread is far more delicious than pumpernickel though not as distinctive.
posted by Bee'sWing at 7:00 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


I'd also be up for bread home delivery, pracowity. When I was very very little and we were living in Singapore one of my few clear memories is the bread delivery man bringing me my loaf of cinnamon raisin bread for breakfast. It would be handed to me and I'd cradle it and run back into the apartment building so we could eat it right away.
posted by PussKillian at 7:03 AM on October 16, 2019 [5 favorites]


In the rugged mountains of Germany's Westphalia region, bakers steam loaves of dense rye for up to 24 hours

a delightful snack known to the locals as "The Treat Of Westphalia"
posted by Greg Nog at 7:15 AM on October 16, 2019 [48 favorites]


So much better than the Diet of Worms.
posted by Bee'sWing at 7:25 AM on October 16, 2019 [28 favorites]


As a person who lived in S. Korea, I can vouch for the deliciousness of Gyeran Bbangg. I just had to look up a recipe on found one on My Korean Kitchen . Now I'm going to have to make some this weekend. I'm guessing out VitaMix will work for making the caster sugar.

And I'd love daily bread delivery.
posted by kathrynm at 7:40 AM on October 16, 2019


Maybe it's regional. but we called Appam "egg hoppers" (or just hoppers if they weren't made with an egg n the middle) in the Kandy area of Sri Lanka. They are a treat. The bowl shape is ready made for sopping up curries or passion fruit jam, whichever you prefer. An interesting stretch on the concept of bread.
posted by OHenryPacey at 7:44 AM on October 16, 2019 [3 favorites]


Also missing from the list is some variant of cheese-and-spinach-encased-by-pastry; the Turkish börek, or Maltese pastizzi or one of the numerous other variants of that concept that exist mostly around the northern Mediterranean.
posted by acb at 7:51 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


CTRL-F "khachapuri"
...
Ah, there it is.
posted by LMGM at 8:00 AM on October 16, 2019 [4 favorites]




I'm very happy to see Malaysian roti canai and Southern US biscuits, two of my favorite foods in the world.

I found the various daily breads in Slovenia (part buckwheat?) to be extraordinary as well and would have been glad to see them get some love. Oh well
posted by mkuhnell at 8:09 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Pike Place Market has a crumpet shop, fresh is really a tasty treat.

What I don't get is the "artisanal" breads that have crusts that would make a serviceable hammer and bubbles inside, a bit of bread but mostly empty holes.
posted by sammyo at 8:10 AM on October 16, 2019 [5 favorites]


When I was a small child in South Wales we'd have harvest festival where we'd all bring in tins of spaghetti hoops to school to celebrate the harvest.
Part of the celebration was a traditional harvest loaf. Much of this is dimly remembered, because it was a long time, but the harvest loaf was a vast loaf of bread nearly 5 foot high! (This is apparently an artefact of me being at most 5 at this point, it is in fact slightly smaller than a 5 year old, in height, which is still relatively impressive for a bread, I guess....) in the shape of a sheaf of wheat. It is traditional for there to be tiny harvest mice also made of bread in the shape of it.
It was always my ambition to eat the mouse from a harvest loaf.
It looked so delicious and inviting and bready.
We never got to eat the loaf at all. I assume the teachers snaffled it all up with some gin after school was over.

It is now my ambition to eat that mouse AND all of these breads.
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 8:13 AM on October 16, 2019 [7 favorites]


Khachapuri is a sandwich, not bread. Mind you, shoti is delicious, especially straight from the oven.

The insufficient representation of non-white bread is a very Anglosaxon bias, mind you. Pumpernickel barely counts. The proper non-caramel-flavoured stuff - staropolski, Russian black, Lithuanian rugine duona scattered with caraway seeds - is where it's at. The bread with crust you can cut people with.

Last time I was queuing in a proper Polish bakery, I counted the varieties on offer. An utterly unhipster rural place had about 15 different white/wheat breads and 20 different ryes, never mind the various bread rolls, toast bread etc. We take our bread very seriously. (And I would totally pick staropolski, a rye-wheat blend with pronounced crumb and supreme bounce, as the Polish representation.)
posted by I claim sanctuary at 8:15 AM on October 16, 2019 [6 favorites]


I understand how this makes me sound, but truly there are few better things in life than wandering down a narrow street in Paris munching on the end of a baguette.

One glaring omission from this list is a classic west coast country sourdough batard.
posted by Lutoslawski at 8:26 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


I would totally pick staropolski, a rye-wheat blend with pronounced crumb and supreme bounce, as the Polish representation

I need this recipe. Actually, all the recipes--if anyone has a great recipe for one of the breads listed in the article or your 'no, really, they should have included this bread', please share or PM me!
posted by carrioncomfort at 8:35 AM on October 16, 2019 [3 favorites]


They missed one!
(/hamburger)
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:39 AM on October 16, 2019


One glaring omission from this list is a classic west coast country sourdough batard.

Yeah, I was just coming to write that San Francisco Sourdough ought to be on here, because it's very much it's own thing, even if "sourdough" as a category is too broad for the list.
posted by dnash at 8:40 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Hey, Norway is featured!

We do have at least four main kinds of flat bread up here, though, for those of you who, like CNN, did not consider Northern Europe to be flatbread country. There's lefse, as mentioned, also going under other names like kling where I live. They can have both sweet and savoury fillings depending on the occasion. I think the supermarket stock something like 6-7 varieties. There's lompe which is mostly potato, and often used as a wrap around hotdogs.

On the not-floppy side there's knekkebrød which is used a substitute for regular sandwich bread. And flatbrød, often used plain with soup or stew. The supermarket will have at least half-a-dozen varieties of each.
posted by Harald74 at 8:41 AM on October 16, 2019 [3 favorites]


The insufficient representation of non-white bread is a very Anglosaxon bias, mind you. Pumpernickel barely counts.

The resident German agrees. Where’s the Roggenbrot and Graubrot and Schwarzbrot in its countless varieties all over central Europe?

(Aren‘t pupusas sandwiches? Or...dumplings?)
posted by The Toad at 9:00 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


When I was in third grade we toured the local (since closed) Wonder Bread factory and I got to eat a slice of Wonder Bread right out of the oven and in third grade that was the best bread in the world.

I've since moved on to better breads.
posted by bondcliff at 9:03 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


Also happy to see the Montreal bagel. I'd never had one until a couple years ago, and now I feel like I'm being punished a little anytime I'm served a New York style bagel instead.

I have to ask: are Montreal bagels like Philly cheesesteaks, in that the places that are known for it are actually terrible examples of it and basically tourist traps? I ask because I've been to St. Viateur and I was beyond underwhelmed. The problem wasn't "it's not a NY bagel", the problem was it was a dense, tasteless bread product that I can't imagine going out of my way to eat again.
posted by tocts at 9:05 AM on October 16, 2019


Are crumpets bread?

That list seems to be consciously avoiding sweetened and enriched breads, but honestly for the UK I’d rather have a hot cross bun, or a Chelsea bun, or Bara Brith or something.
posted by Bloxworth Snout at 9:05 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Also, this list is missing Moroccan harcha which is really easy to make and really tasty.

(granted: it's basically butter and semolina bound together lightly and pan fried, so how could it be bad?)
posted by tocts at 9:07 AM on October 16, 2019


This list has kare pan for Japan, which reminded me of a very fun anime series called Yakitate!! Japan. The main character is a boy on a quest to create a national bread for Japan (the entire series being based around the pun of "pan" being the Japanese word for bread so he wants to create "Ja-pan"). Using his special "Solar Hands" which are warmer than normal human hands, he enters the country's most prestigious bakery and engages in absurd bread-baking battles to create, as the show's opening narration puts it, "a Japanese bread made by and for the Japanese people, which can be presented to the world proudly". It's a goofy parody of shounen battle anime like Naruto or Dragon Ball based around baking and puns.
posted by Sangermaine at 9:11 AM on October 16, 2019 [6 favorites]


Seattle has a long history of crumpet shops.
posted by Bee'sWing at 9:11 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Since being instructed by my doctor to reduce my carb, intake, I eat a lot less bread than I used to.

Thanks to Mrs Potato and this list for reminding me that that's all the more reason to make sure, when I do eat bread, that it's really good bread.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:22 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Am I the only person who's a bit disappointed by the trendiness/ubiquity of ciabatta? It's never as crusty or glutenous as I want it to be.
posted by Faint of Butt at 9:37 AM on October 16, 2019 [4 favorites]


Another voice for why include damper, it's not good to eat.

I don't know what breads they were, but the other day a friend who works at a bakery brought leftover breads to my place, and the best bread is bread eaten at 3am that you're passing around with friends & dipping into a jar of horseradish mustard because there's nothing else.

The only downside is I'm still finding crumbs that got into the mattress.
posted by Acid Communist at 9:49 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


Australian damper, for one, seems to be something that was once eaten out of bitter necessity, now occasionally made in the name of national pride, despite not being particularly appetising compared to modern alternatives

This reminds me of my surprise at how damp bread was in England (kind of like the country itself). You just couldn't get a crispy crust on a baguette and the moisture content of just your basic loaf was much higher than what I get in Canada, the United States or even France a mere 100 miles away. It turns out that it is product of deprivation and hardship during WWII and just after when the government in the face of food shortages mandated the weight of a loaf of a bread for rationing purposes and to keep bakers from ripping people off with smaller loaves. Except the bakers figured out how to cheat people by increasing the moisture content. Then it became what people were used to. Kind of like the way marmite was a way for people with insufficient diets to get vitamins and minerals from brewing sludge and people just go used to it. Then these culturally developed tastes propagate and persist even after their initiating causes fade. Much like cured meats have persisted despite ubiquitous refrigeration.
posted by srboisvert at 9:50 AM on October 16, 2019 [6 favorites]


tocts, I am a Jewish American/Canadian, for reference. Montreal bagels are made differently from New York bagels, there is honey in the boiling water in Montreal, changing the flavour. Plus they are in general smaller, but that's not a requirement as far as I know, and they are denser and not as chewy, but I'm not 100% sure how that's accomplished.

I do not like Montreal bagels. Note I did not say they are bad, I said I do not like them. I was raised on New York style.
posted by wellred at 9:55 AM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


I used to get weekly fruit and veg deliveries by a company that also did some dairy, eggs, bread type stuff, and they had this bread from a local SF bakery that I miss still. A pullman loaf of pain au lait, cut into thick slices, like an inch thick. It made the best damn toast. Sadly first the bakery and then the delivery company went under. Acme is the only place I've found an equivalent, but they only sell it out of their two direct shops and I don't get up to Berkeley or the Ferry Building very often these days.
posted by tavella at 10:05 AM on October 16, 2019


Poor Ireland. Forever cursed by soda bread.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:26 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


I have to ask: are Montreal bagels like Philly cheesesteaks, in that the places that are known for it are actually terrible examples of it and basically tourist traps? I ask because I've been to St. Viateur and I was beyond underwhelmed.

Nope, lots of locals swear by St-Viateur and Fairmount, which are the two best-known bagel bakeries. They're legit.
posted by oulipian at 10:48 AM on October 16, 2019 [2 favorites]


I've been to St. Viateur and I was beyond underwhelmed.

See you should have went to Fairmount instead!
posted by Ashwagandha at 11:00 AM on October 16, 2019


Surprised not to see sourdough on there.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:22 PM on October 16, 2019 [3 favorites]


We have a "chain" of Montreal Bagel shops in Seattle, (Altana).

So good...
posted by Windopaene at 12:22 PM on October 16, 2019


Poor Ireland. Forever cursed by soda bread.

That's not the Irish curse that I'm familiar with...
posted by slogger at 12:24 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


lots of locals swear by St-Viateur

Well, color me confused though. Maybe they had a bad day? I love bread products of all kinds, so I don't think it's because I was comparing it to a NY bagel. I also particularly like sesame seeds on bagels or bread. St-Viateur's was a total flop for me, though.
posted by tocts at 12:37 PM on October 16, 2019


And as a New Yorker I need to formally register a snort and a huff at the mention of Montreal bagels (unofficially I'm not fussed, but officially I think I'm compelled to at least tut).
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:51 PM on October 16, 2019


No slot for lángos, the Hungarian fried bread?

Think of a savory elephant ear. Then cover it with pressed garlic, sour cream, and cheese. And if that doesn't sound good to you, who even are you? Go away. I don't trust you.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:00 PM on October 16, 2019 [11 favorites]


It's funny that they associate challah with Israel: the large plaited brioche-style bread that North Americans think of when they hear the word is actually Polish. Jews in/from other areas have other fancy breads, which they also call challah, reserved for their Sabbath meals.
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:49 PM on October 16, 2019 [4 favorites]


tocts: I've been to St. Viateur and Fairmont a million times and actually think the best Montreal bagel in the Montreal area is a couple of hours south at Myer's in Burlington, Vermont.

The owner, Lloyd Squires, started at St. Viateur. Here's an an amazing piece about his personal history and a day in his life.
posted by rossmeissl at 3:04 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


That "Southern biscuit" is a little too fluffy. Biscuits should be drier, preferably beaten, without leavening -- but nobody does that anymore. Anyway, those flabby things that they give you at KFC? Not biscuits.
Also, salt-rising bread -- disgusting to make at home, delicious from a bakery -- is the potato bread from NZ a cousin? Otherwise, another lost bit of baking.
posted by CCBC at 3:07 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


My dad used to buy salt-rising bread...

About the worst smelling thing I can recall being in our toaster oven. Was there a reference in this list?
posted by Windopaene at 4:18 PM on October 16, 2019


My earliest "flavor memory" is of some delicious bread, eaten only once, brought to our home by a Scottish neighbor and friend of my mother's. (It would undoubtedly have been home-baked.)

I remember it as being on the sweet side, brown rather than white, almost cakey, and fairly dense (but not buttery). I was hoping it might turn up in this list, but it's not there. Anyone have an idea what bread I might have tasted so so long ago?
posted by tenderly at 4:25 PM on October 16, 2019


Brown and slightly sweet sounds like an oat bread, which would fit with Scotland.
posted by tavella at 5:03 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Salt-rising bread is not on the list, but that NZ bread sounds a bit like it -- yeast starter from potatoes. Difference is they leave the potatoes in. Making the starter is very stinky, smells like vomit, kind of. But this should not be noticeable in the finished product which is dense but light and perfect. toasted or not, with butter. (From another topic: sugar sandwich = sugar + butter. This on salt rising bread was a staple of my childhood.)
posted by CCBC at 6:08 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]



In the rugged mountains of Germany's Westphalia region, bakers steam loaves of dense rye for up to 24 hours

a delightful snack known to the locals as "The Treat Of Westphalia"
posted by Greg Nog at 7:15 AM on October 16


but y?
posted by lalochezia at 7:27 PM on October 16, 2019 [1 favorite]


Then there's brown bread in a can. That was a staple of my childhood. Best with cream cheese on it. Pity, I haven't seen it in Cleveland in ages.

Clearly this isn't in the world's best breads, but pretty damn tasty.
posted by kathrynm at 7:35 AM on October 17, 2019


I'm sad Finnish bread was not mentioned
posted by Mrs Potato at 8:36 AM on October 17, 2019 [1 favorite]


Best bread of Finland: Archipelago bread (svartbröd/mustaleipä). Worst bread of Finland: Tree bark break.
posted by ikalliom at 9:43 AM on October 17, 2019 [2 favorites]


I *love* mustaleipa, with smoked salmon is my fav
posted by Mrs Potato at 11:47 AM on October 17, 2019


tenderly: I had a look at F. Marian McNeill's "The Scots Kitchen", and it lists breid o'mane, ankerstock, balk, bakin-lotch, bawbee rows, birlin, clod, derrin, fadge, foal, meldar, nacket, snoddie, sod, tivlach, toddie, wafrans, whig and wine-bake as varieties of bread.
posted by offog at 12:16 PM on October 17, 2019


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