Baguette is a type of French bread that is very popular in France.
For the French, going to the bakery is a joyful and social habit. Every day, 12 million French people visit a bakery, and bakers bake more than 6 billion baguettes every year.
A perfect baguette should have a golden, crunchy crust that crumbles when gently squeezed. The inside should be fluffy and elastic with creamy, honeycomb pores that smell of yeast fermentation.
A traditional baguette is usually 6-7 centimeters in diameter, 55-65 centimeters in length, and weighs about 250 grams. It is made with only four ingredients: flour, water, salt, and yeast.
These ingredients are mixed and kneaded at the right temperature to form a dough. After fermentation, the dough develops the unique aroma of a French baguette.
The dough is then cut into 250-gram pieces and shaped into baguettes. The baguettes are placed on linen for final fermentation.
After fermentation, the baker transfers the baguettes to a special tray in the oven and makes several parallel cuts on them. These cuts make each baguette different from the next.
The oven must have a steam function to ensure that the crust of the bread turns golden brown. After baking, the baguette is placed in a dry, ventilated room to cool down.
The hardness of the baguette is related to its production method. The raw materials used are only flour, salt, yeast, and water. There is no added sugar or cream, and even the flour is unbleached with no additives or preservatives.
Bread made with these four ingredients will be hard.
France has a mild climate with lots of rain and humidity. If the bread is made very soft, it will soon become moldy and inedible. So the baguette is made hard to help preserve it.
When fresh out of the oven, the crust is crispy and the inside is soft. But after a few days in a dry environment, it will become very hard.
Making French baguettes depends on weather conditions. The temperature of the dough, water, and oven must be taken into account. Ideally, the weather should be warm but not more than 22 degrees Celsius. The air should be moist but not too humid.
French people of all ages love to eat baguettes for meals and snacks. Many French people enjoy breaking off a hot baguette fresh from the bakery every morning and dipping it in milk coffee.
Others like to spread butter and jam on a baguette for a refreshing morning snack.