Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Bread Project Bakery ... French baking with none of the fanfare like Paul or Kayser but simply trés bien

I came to experience the taste from The Bread Project eating their marvelous Orange Cream Tart even before knowing that they exist. Yes, I recall it was in Toby's Estate and then I saw this same bright irresistible tart sitting happily on the counter of Jewel Coffee. I came to learn about The Bread Project Bakery from the February 2012 issue of the Epicure Life Refinements magazine that put it alongside big names like Paul Bakery and Maison Kayser. But guess what draws me to this bakery? It's their Promise to make bread the artisan way, without short cuts, with only the highest quality ingredients, not unlike the 2 big French bakery that came into Singapore with a big fanfare. But mostly the draw is their Épi de Blé, a love at first sight for me.

The Bakery is located in one of the shop houses along Joo Chiat Road, at the stretch nearer to Joo Chiat Place and a few shop spaces from Hong Mao Mian Jia. As you enter the bakery, you'll find the space where they showcase their fresh bakes really small. There's a little counter for their tarts and pastries that double up as the cashier counter, a little rack for some bread and a shelf that tells you what they are capable of churning but is not necessarily available. If you know the layout of these shophouses, you'll know that the floor area is much bigger than that. So the rest of the space is dedicated to kneading and baking. I guess a big chunk of their business is to supply to the many cafes that's booming in Singapore and most importantly, I think it's in their belief to provide fresh bakes so there's no need to showcase quantity. If you do walk-in, whatever is available, closer to the end of their day (not much because regulars will just come and swipe them off the shelves), will still be quality fresh bakes.

Here's the Orange Cream Tart that I can easily spot over the counters of Toby's Estate and Jewel Coffee. The tart base is not the crusty sort but a soft bread that lends itself as a base to the cubes of orange cream. Sweetness from this tart was refined and the taste of citrus was consummate.

The Bostock is another one that caught my eye as HY and I love almonds. This pastry looks like two pieces of toasts heaped with some coarsely grated almonds. That's not wrong. However, these 2 pieces of toast were crunchy on the outside and as they were used to sandwich come almond cream, still soft and light on the inside. It was sweet and my Nespresso Ristretto shot which I had with this Bostock needed no extra sweetness.

Even sweeter than the Bostock and another intense almond pastry was the Almond Croissant.  You'll actually find a croissant engulfed in this sweeten milky dough coat over the light flaky croissant. 

Here's a nicer look at the piece of Almond Croissant, the last one on the shelf that I swiped home.

As I was saying before, this is the shelf of French bread that showcase the variety of breads that The Bread Project is capable of. These are not for sale as they believe in giving you the freshest, you'll have to order them if they are not available over the counter. Usually, it takes 3 days to pre-order the bread but they manage to get me my Épi de Blé the next day. I was glad that they indulged me even when I'm just ordering one.

So here's the Épi de Blé that I so wanted to get my hands on. Like I told you, it was love at first sight. Have I ever told anyone how much I love baguette? I can single handedly swallow a whole loaf if my mum or HY didn't stop me with the "Are you sure you are going to finish that?" question coupled with looks of disapproval. When it is freshly out of the oven I can eat it on it's own, or simply with butter. I'll be most willing to trade the bowl of premium Hom Mali Thai rice for a loaf of baguette and stuff myself silly dipping it into chicken curry. OK, sorry I digressed. Anyway, when I saw the Épi, I knew my days of slicing baguettes, messing up the place with crumbs and getting mad at myself for that was over. I can simply tear off each section as I need them. That's why the French made this for the convenience and enjoyment in picnics. When I brought the Épi de Blé home and amused myself by snaking it in the air for a photo shoot, my CL must have thought I'm probably going nuts, and whereas HY knew better than to disturb me when I'm having fun with my new "toy". As I told you, it's love at first sight with Épi. Wouldn't you agree?

174 Joo Chiat Road
Tel : +65 6440 9228
The Bread Project Bakery Website


E Food said...

I am getting mighty hungry, bread is one of my favorite things and as soon as you mentioned the almond croissant.. I was salivating. I think many people have a special connection with bread, it is a comfort food, and the variety of bread is huge, I cannot even think of one culture where bread is not a major part of the diet or meals in general. French baking is for sure the height of the bread baking world and a pleasure to taste, tres bien and ooh la la.
Great food blog, very much enjoyed, now I must get a snack!

Unknown said...

Glad that you enjoyed. Good bread is hard to come by that's why I see the need to share my Bread Project Bakery escapades with everyone. Cheers!

Yukari Sakamoto said...

I love Bread Project Bakery. Have you tried any of their hearty breads? Amazing rye, cereal, and my favorite, the sunflower. All of these are great on their own, with a bit of salted butter, cheese, or as the base for a sandwich.

Unknown said...

Hi Yukari, I did not try their hearty breads yet. The sunflower with a little butter ... Hmm sounds like my kind of bread. Will take a walk to get some Thanks for the tip :)


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