Posted On Friday, June 29, 2012 at 08:33:22 AM
Baking is a phenomenon that dates back to over 8,000 years. The Egyptians first introduced round, flat and hard bread, and then the Greeks came along with some more varieties. The Romans started the first recorded baking school, and brought in more and more bakers as they conquered more and more territories.
|Pics: Nikhil Ghorpade
But even though the Roman Empire eventually diminished, they left behind the wonderful art of bread making. And although the Italians no doubt contributed, it was the French who took their baking very seriously, starting the first modern baking schools, and then of course pâtisseries. It is this same French boulangerie experience one can discover nestled away on Boat Club Road.
At first glance you might even be transported to a little pâtisserie nestled on a sidewalk in Paris. Operated by a trained French boulanger, every loaf and croissant here is handcrafted and baked to perfection the old-fashioned French way — no unnecessary ‘Indianisation’ of recipes.
The menu isn’t a fixed one and keeps changing according to the freshness of the produce available — which makes this place an artisan bakery.
Fresh multigrain breads, baguettes and more are available to prepare sandwiches with goat cheese or ham ‘n’ cheese. Sweet and savoury tartlets, stuffed croissants, pains au chocolat and cakes and gâteaux are up for sale too.
I turned up here a little late in the evening when they were winding up for the day, and unfortunately that meant less options for me to tuck into. I went for some delicious-looking Pain au Chocolat aux Amandes (Rs 140) which is simply chocolate bread with almonds.
The bread was sticky, gooey yet surprisingly dry. Slivers of almonds were dotted all over the crust and there was that bittersweet flavour within it as well, best-suited with a sip of your favorite coffee. Their Roule aux Saucisse (Rs 80) is more or less a baked version of a hot dog minus the salads and sauces.
The crust is admirable, with a flaky shiny texture that is very hard to find elsewhere. Their use of some inimitable French ingredients may be what makes every product stand apart. A Mini Quiche (Rs 80) came next and was also very enjoyable.
Spinach ‘n’ cheese and chicken ‘n’ cheese were the options, both with a crusty base and succulent topping. For a quiche, the dough of the tart has to be perfectly rolled so that it doesn’t fall apart till the very end, and that’s exactly what I found on these mini-bites here.
Their coffee list has a few options, out of which I went for the Cafe Latte (Rs 150), enjoyable with the fare, but definitely pricey.
Baking is a precise art. Discipline with the quantity of ingredients during the baking process is the real secret behind a good product. Although new technologies are plentiful and artificial raising agents and stabilizers available, this boulangerie needs none of these.
The flavour of freshness here is absolutely additive free. The items are quite heavy on the pocket, but the value is justified because of the use of the freshest ingredients and experienced hands. Make sure you drop in early to have more options to choose from!
La Bouchée d'or
Gera Plaza, Boat Club Road, Pune -1