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« Half & Half, PDX and 'zines | Main | old skool shaved ice »

08 September 2005


I pretty much agree with you on everything, though I've never been that impressed with anything but the coffee at Crema. Funny, I updated the St. Honoré Boulangerie review today after finishing up my Ken's bakery review. Criollo has been inconsistent, though is generally trending better as time goes by.

I've never understood the local fascination with St. Honore. I think it's the appeal of what people assume to be a genuinely French bakery--they got a downright fawning article in the Oregonian right when they opened that made it sound like they had lifted a piece of Paris c. 1954 and dropped it right into northwest Portland. It's way too crazy and chaotic in there, and then the food is generally subpar. I really prefer Ken's.

hi shuna-
sorry criollo was pretty much a bust. really, i DID hear good things about it. oh well. since fooddude above says that they're inconsistent, maybe you were there on an off day (hopefully).

> I had trouble sharing the cake

you say that so casually, yet i feel that somehow the words "fisticuffs" and "bloodbath" come into play....

Re cannele: I have never had a real one, but for some reason I have developed an overwhelming interest in them. (I'm really not sure why, I'm certainly more of a cook than a baker, and they are obviously extremely complicated.)
I have not found them anywhere in my Pittsburgh area. If I could find them, I'd buy them, rather than try to make them, much like my baguettes, which I make only because I can't find any I really like locally.
Because of financial considerations, I have not aquired the copper molds. I did buy a silicon sheet of molds, and made some per the Paula Wolfert Slow Meditteranean Cooking method, minus the wax. They were delicious and odd, but not so dark, and I suspect they probably missed the mark pretty widely.
Any advice? Is it hopeless without the molds of copper?
Thanks for stopping by.

Santos!! So nice to have you over here! And thanks for noticing the innuendo.

Lindy, thanks for visiting and commenting.
I think that with the silicon molds they just do not attract the heat, or hold it, as well. But the fact that you attempted making them means that you deserve A Gold Star! That, in itself, is an accomplishment.
I don't know anything about Pittsburgh, but they have some fantastic bakeries in Philadephia. It's fantastic that you are making what fills in the gaps.

Can't speak for Portland goodies, but there's something I am trying to work out. It's part of one's (maybe DNA) constitution.

When I lived on Barrow St. in Manhattan a thousand years ago I could cross the street to a little French bakery and get cunning, small, buttery croissants. They became my standard. But here in California and in other places where I have inhaled them at breakfast they have been the bigger, more shattering, crash-against-your-chest-crumby sort of creation.

What's yer poison, Shuna? I find virtues in each, though I still would prefer to have the smaller butteries available in Marin and have yet to find them.

Shall we deal with this and get on with --- brioche?

Understand: I bake none of these. But I am an obsessive lover.

Kudzu, The best croissant I have ever had was last summer from Lenotre. I like small buttery shattering things.
Know this: it's much much easier to make a few big croissants that a lot of little ones. The dough is delicate and difficult to work with, especially if the air temp is warm. The croissant at Ken's was very good indeed, and much smaller than the ones we have here at Citizen Cake and Tartine. But I must admit that this body has processed a lot of the latter's with butter and seasonal jam, so I don't think we are that hurting.
If in NYC you must have one at CAFE CLAUDE on West 4th st. !!

Thanks for the mini-tutorial on croissants. When Elizabeth had her bakery here in Mill Valley -- pre-Tartine -- we were blessed.

Hi Shuna,
You mentioned that there are some fantastic bakeries in Pbilly. Could you recommend some specific ones?
Most appreciated,

Hey Shuna,
Long time listener, first time caller (actually, I may have commented once before...)
Anyway, here's one to add to your list for your next Portland visit:

Baker and Spice

Just thought I'd share my recent bakery crush with you.

A new bakery/patisserie opened on 185th and Baseline in Beaverton. Excellent quality. (The name is a bit bland, though: La Bakery.)

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