A baguette is one of the most versatile types of bread: Because of its crusty nature and long shape, it's ideal to be made into garlic bread, it's perfect to be used for sandwiches, it's great to be partnered with dipping sauces, and can even transform into a base for a bruschetta or crostini. This multi-dimensional nature should be maximized, so no baguette should ever go to waste. Here are some tips from Food magazine on how to extend its shelf life:
• Never refrigerate a baguette. The humidity and the cold temperature dampen the bread and make it lose its crusty texture. The cold also draws out the moisture, thus making the bread go stale faster.
• Store baguette and other crusty breads like batard, pugliese, rye or wheat-grain breads at room temperature. Wrap the bread in a clean cloth and place in a paper bag to avoid trapping in moisture that can moisten the bread.
• If you won’t use the bread for more than three days, tightly wrap it in foil and freeze. Just heat it straight in the oven toaster, no thawing necessary. Where to Buy Baguettes can be easily sourced from local supermarkets and bakeshop chains, but if you’re hankering for the “real thing,” try the baguettes baked fresh daily by Paris-trained baker John Kui. He uses wild yeast and 24-hour retardation, and hand mixes his dough to produce crusty baguettes, sourdough, brioche and croissants, among other artisan breads.
See exciting recipes where you can use baguettes in Food Magazine. Original article by Mitchie Sison, photograph Paulo Valenzuela, styling Tina Concepcion-Diaz.