The joy of real bread

It’s Sunday so I thought I would write an easy going blog about bread.

Recently Maria and I have really been trying hard to focus on eating well. There is so much stuff flying around about GM foods and what have you that we are very conscious about the quality of food we eat.

Every Wednesday morning our road closes and a market sets up selling the freshest of fruit and vegetables. This is one of the things about Brazil; I am sure the diet here is far healthier than back in the UK, and it is so great not to have to go to a supermarket.

Photo: Simon Robinson

Photo: Simon Robinson

One of the great things about São Paulo is that if you love food, it has everything. It is far cheaper to eat out, and eat well, and Maria and I always try and find new places to eat. It’s our little treat. Last week we found Julice Boulangêre, an amazing padaria in Pinheiros for breakfast. We don’t really have padarias in the UK which is why I have not translated it – they are bakeries with a cafe/restaurant added on.

Photo: Simon Robinson

Photo: Simon Robinson

Yesterday we went to Vila Madalena to try a new one as the one in the photo above was so popular you had to wait half an hour for a table and I don’t really do waiting, especially when it is for breakfast and I’m hungry. This one, Le Pain Quotidien, had a huge communal table made from recycled wood, and we decided to sit there rather than have a small table for two.

Photo: Simon Robinson

Photo: Simon Robinson

I have to say the food was fantastic. I had granola and yoghurt, a cappucino which was served in a bowl, and a basket of mixed breads.

Photo: Simon Robinson

Photo: Simon Robinson

Le Pain Quotidien has locations around the world, and was created by Alain Coumont. Every aspect of their business springs from a philosophy of organic quality and what is right for the earth. Eating there is a wonderful experience and it really feels that every element comes together as a coherent whole.

Photo: Simon Robinson

Photo: Simon Robinson

As for making their breads they say:

Our bread is made today exactly as it was in the beginning: with only organic stone-ground flour, salt, and water, kneaded and shaped by hand and baked in a hearth under the watchful eye of artisan bakers. The process is long, arduous, and delicate…and worth every effort.

Source – Le Pain Quotidien

Now here is the amazing thing for me. I try not to eat too much wheat as it can make me feel really bloated. But after both of these breakfasts, I was full for a long long time afterwards, and although very filled, in no way did I feel bloated. It was quite a revelation finding these breads, and of course Maria and I bought a few loaves from both.

Our next project is to start making our own bread, as we do not always want to have to travel to buy it. I feel so lucky in that we do have the ability to eat as well as possible, and not everyone can. I worry about the dire situation of a degrading food chain dominated by dire GM crops, but this is one great pleasure I now have, the joy of the simplicity of a darn good load of bread.

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