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Jan 5, 2001 08:46 AM

Breads @ Buona Forchetta

  • h

I was given a book written by the owner of this bakery in LA. I haven't been able to find mention of Buona Forchetta on Chowhound, and I was wondering - how do the breads compare in texture and quality to the breads at La Brea Bakery?

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  1. j
    Jessica Ritz

    Frankly, I've never been all that wowed. Their mission statement is quite elaborate, yet I've never had any bread in Italy that seems like an inspirational model for their "authentic" recreations... While some of their breads are good (most notably the focaccia and olive filoncino), they're *extremely* dense and don't have much in the way of a solid crust. You could knock someone out with the weight of those bad boys, that is if the crust doesn't give first. La Brea's hard to beat on that front. B.F. loaves are good for oozy spreadables b/c they won't leak through, if that makes any sense.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Jessica Ritz
      Jessica Ritz

      Part of my last response is unclear. I meant to say that La Brea breads have the best *crusts* in town! By extension, they too may happen to be endowed with a special quality that would be an ideal method for dealing with one's enemies. But I certainly don't intend to advocate ugly physical baguette battles...

      1. re: Jessica Ritz

        Jessica, thanks. that's pretty much what I suspected from the first batch("in just 90 mins!"),of foccacia that I threw together; VERY dense in almost a disagreable way. I'm trying another batch using a starter from 2 days ago plus a slow overnight rise. I was looking for something a bit more instantly gratifying than the Nancy Silverton method of cultivating a wild starter with days of care, feeding, etc., but the difference was staggering. I'll see my next result in a couple of hours. At least I have fodder for delicious croutons and breadcrumbs, and the book(No Need to Knead)is an pleasant enough read from a woman who appears to throw herself in a lusty way towards life and work.

        1. re: Heidi

          Alright, I will move this to General Topics but first....repeat foccacia batch had more developed flavor than first, still a dense crumb and not the big-holed interior I was was promised. Maybe it was pilot-error, but I'm no stranger to bread baking and have had far superior results with some other tried and true recipes I use. I'm not dismissing the book on the whole as I've only tried ONE recipe (apparently focaccia is
          what the business was founded upon), I'm just not satisfied with my focaccia (although young son is happily munching away).
          Anyone else on bread baking this chilly winter? Then please meet me at General Topics.

          1. re: Heidi

            Buona Forchetta is an extremely gimmicky bakery whose breads, loaded with things like hazelnuts and herbs, are more like dried-out savory poundcakes than like anything you might consider solid bread. If you wanted to do a fruit bread or a nut bread or something, the book might be okay.

            The foccacia recipe in Nancy Silverton's book is one of her easiest, most workable recipes.