What exactly is Artisan Bread?

What exactly is artisan bread? You probably hear or see the term in your local supermarket but the true definition is that it is made by someone with a craft or skill in producing this specific product. In regards to bread – it is a skilled and experienced baker in the craft of bread-making. Something made in small quantities and a far cry from prepackaged supermarket loaves.

Many people think artisan bread ultimately comes down to the texture and colour. It’s by these two features that attract #breadlovers to artisan bread but it doesn’t exactly make it #artisan.

Throughout the centuries, bread has taken on many guises, recipes and results. But artisan #realbread brings us all a gourmet experience which satisfies our hearts and stomachs (and also can bring up nostalgia!).

Made by a craftsperson using largely and predominately traditional techniques, the concentration is on on the core processes involved in producing the bread, including the ingredients, mixing, fermenting and baking processes.

Skill and knowledge are integral to making artisan bread. High quality ingredients has to be conjoined to a experienced and passionate baker who knows how to use them. Quality ingredients are mixed, slowly fermented, hand shaped and then baked in small batches.

Perfecting a craft like this is developed over time and is ultimately a life-long learning process which has been passed down generation to generation. Special attention is taken to each batch – returning to the process and fundamentals of the age-old bread making tradition.

The consumption of artisan breads continue to climb and with it so does our ever-expanding passion to provide the ultimate artisan experience with #realbread.

Provide your customers with the artisan experience – Are you a cafe, venue or restaurant looking for a local supplier of fresh baked ciabatta, sourdough and other artisan breads? Dolce Forno delivers freshly baked artisan breads and pastries within Hertfordshire, St Albans, Surrey, Berkshire, London and Buckinghamshire.

We offer sample trays of our artisan breads and pastries…

Call our team at Dolce Forno Breads on 01727 762 456 or alternatively email contact@dolceforno.co.uk to find out more about our craft artisan bakery and breads delivery services.

The French Baguette

The ‘baguette’ is considered one of the iconic symbols of French culture. A traditional baguette is made with wheat flour, water, yeast and salt, and consists of a crisp crust filled with a soft, fluffy centre.

Like Italy, France has a strong history in bread. Long wide loaves of bread have been around since the time of Louis XIV, and thin ones since the mid-18th century. It’s increasing availability was due to the cheapness of wheat during the 19th century. This meant that white bread was no longer exclusively for the rich.

The first steam oven was brought to the city of Paris in the early 19th century by an Austrian office. This was also when the the croissant was introduced. With the use of deck and steam ovens, loaves could be baked to produce a crisp crust and white airy centre. Deck/steam ovens are a combination of a gas-fired traditional oven and brick oven, a thick ‘deck’ of stone or firebrick heated by natural gas instead of wood.

In 1920, a law passed that prevented french workers to start work from 4.00am. This made it impossible for bakers to get the bread cooked in time for customers’ breakfast. The solution was… to make bread into long thin forms, allowing them to cook faster – and just in time for breakfast!

Interesting Facts about the French Baguette

  • The baguette was not labelled the ‘baguette’ until the 1920s. Stemming from the latin word baculum which became baccheto (Italian) meaning staff or stick.
  • The average French man eats a half a baguette a day, compared with almost a whole baguette in 1970 and more than three in 1900.
  • National law dictates that ‘French’ bread should contain only flour, yeast, salt and water.
  • Baguettes are now widely eaten as sandwiches. Cut a baguette in half then slice each half along the middle. The bread is versatile enough to be sweet or savoury and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  • March 21st is National French Bread Day.
  • According to a legend, it was Napoleon who asked for the baguette to have a long shape. This made it easier for his soldiers to carry their bread around down their pants while in the battlefield.
  • In 2013, a Parisian baker installed the first vending machine for baguettes, available 24/7!

There are ways of telling the difference between a artisan produced baguette and one from a supermarket… Many feel the loaf will smell much more strongly of bread, the crust tends to be darker and richer and the interior is usually a cream colour rather that pure white.

So while you enjoy the memorable taste, texture and sight of the beloved french baguette – take a bite and think about the long history this magic baton has created since its beginnings!

Are you a cafe, venue or restaurant looking for a local supplier of fresh baked ciabatta, sourdough and other artisan breads? Dolce Forno delivers freshly baked artisan breads and pastries within Hertfordshire, St Albans, Surrey, Berkshire, London and Buckinghamshire.

Contact us today to arrange a FREE sample tray of our artisan breads or pastries. Call our team at Dolce Forno Breads on 01727 762 456 or alternatively email contact@dolceforno.co.uk to find out more.

hand crafted breads

Conversation and Croissants

Croissant
French crescent-shaped roll made of sweet flaky yeast dough, eaten for breakfast.

A cornerstone of French pastry – the croissant is known internationally. We know that everyone eats it differently depending on preferences.

Should you add butter, marmalade or strawberry jam or should you go for the savoury option with ham or cheese? Warm it up or keep cold? Cut in half or hold it all together?

Tasty, small packages of folded buttery dough that has been handcrafted into the shape of golden crescent smile to brighten up your day. How should you really eat a croissant?

How do you eat a croissant?

  • Go Savoury
    Whether it’s cooked, preserved meats such as pastrami, salami, Parma ham or perhaps Cheese whether it’s sliced, melted – soft or hard cheese. Eggs scrambled or fried. The options are endless and the croissant is as versatile as sliced bread.
  • Get Sweet
    If you have a sweet tooth – chocolate spread would make the croissant even more divine. Perhaps add jam (whether its homemade or bought from the supermarket) or Sevillian orange marmalade. Some argue you don’t have to add butter to an all-butter croissant. But if you’re like us – adding another level of luxury is a guilty pleasure! Spread it on! You can also purchase/order Almond Croissants or Pain au Chocolat if you’re looking for straightforward no-hassle divine sweetness!
  • Back to Basics
    Why add things to it when you can savor the croissant for all its golden glory and richness of life? Wrap one end with a napkin and tissue; eat from one end to the other. This ensures it maintains its form and prevents it breaking and falling apart! Some croissant lovers enjoy it simply with a creamy coffee, which adds a complimentary bitter flavor to intensify the sweet elements of the pastry. Some enjoy it with freshly squeezed orange juice.

Perfectly flaky and buttery pastry. Crispy and soft with a glorious flavour. Are we making you hungry?

Looking for freshly baked croissants for your conference, meeting or event? Dolce Forno delivers freshly baked artisan breads and pastries within Hertfordshire, St Albans, Surrey, Berkshire, London and Buckinghamshire.

Call our team at Dolce Forno Breads on 01727 762 456 or alternatively email contact@dolceforno-breads.co.uk to find out more about our craft artisan bakery and breads delivery services.

Viennoiserie - Dolce Forno Breads

What is Viennoiserie?

Viennoiserie
A baked product made in a similar manner to bread, but with ingredients giving them a sweeter, heavier quality closer to pastry.

Not many people are aware of term viennoiserie. Viennoiserie covers a range of pastries and baked goods including the delicious and irresistible pain au chocolat, cinnamon pain au raisin, small brioches (briochettes) and pastries with an apple/apricot filling. Invented the mid- 1800s, the art of viennoiserie is now widely well known across the world. This is mainly due to the undoubtedly popular and buttery, layered, rich and golden croissant – which we all love.

Now it’s been argued that the croissant isn’t actually French. Many emphasise the croissant’s ancestry to originate from Austria. The story goes that after a failed attack by the Turks during the Siege of Vienna in 1683, Viennese bakers produced pastries to celebrate, shaping it to in the form of the crescent they saw on the flags of the Ottoman Turks. With the German name for crescent ‘kipfel’ becoming popular in Vienna soon after…

The story continues on that in 1770, the Austrian Princess Marie Antoinette travelled to France to marry King Louis XVI. In her honor, Parisian bakers made similar pastries to Kipfel, coining the French term, croissant. Croissants became as popular as kipfel in Austria, perfected by artisans through the craft and technique.

This technique for producing viennese specialties is positioned between the craft of the Boulanger (baker) and the work of a patissier (pastry maker). Made with a yeast-leavened dough, which has similar qualities to bread making, butter, eggs, milk, sugar and cream are added to the dough to sweeten and bring them towards pastry making.

Popular within the range of viennoiserie are many of today’s favourites:

· Croissants

· Pain au chocolat

· Pain aux raisins

· Brioche

· Baguette viennoise

· Chausson aux pommes

Typically eaten at breakfast, but now eaten at any time of day. High quality viennoiserie goods from an artisan bakery combine great taste with excellent texture and aesthetics.

Now viennoiserie goods are available in corporate and company meetings, conferences, trade shows right through to hospitality, hotels and members clubs.

Looking for an artisan bakery? We deliver freshly baked and handcrafted breads, pastries and viennoiserie goods within Hertfordshire, St Albans, Surrey, Berkshire, North London or Buckinghamshire.

Bring a touch of Viennese and Parisian culture to your next corporate event or meeting. Call our team at Dolce Forno Breads on 01727 762 456 or alternatively email contact@dolceforno-breads.co.uk to find out more about our viennoiserie and craft baked goods.