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Real Store-bought French Bread

I don't know how long HEB has been carrying this stuff, but I want them to continue doing so. It's real French bread, made in France. Only 6 ingredients - no added fortification or other chemicals.

"Menessiz" French Bread. Sturdy "modified atmosphere packaging" makes it good for 3 months (expiration date on my packages are sometime in March). They are NOT frozen (but they can be). I just got a package each of their par-baked demi-baguettes and their regular baguettes for $1.50 each. This is GREAT bread. I announce it here in the hopes that HEB continues to make it available.

Picture of the package so you know what to look for:
http://yfrog.com/f7frenchbreadj

I'm going back to the store now to buy at least 6 more packages while they're still there and on sale (2 packages for $3). And then to Costco for a bag of those addicting meatballs to make crispy, cheesy, gooey meatball subs.

-sw (who has no affiliation to any manufacturer, importer, or retailer, yada, yada...)

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  1. I bought those recently to sop up some shrimp ettoufee and was delightfully surprised at the good crust it produced. I will get some more while they're on sale!

    1. My interest is definitely piqued. Which section of the store is it in? Also, which HEB did you find it at?

      2 Replies
      1. re: agoodbite

        I got it at the HEB on Brodie in the bread aisle.

        1. re: agoodbite

          Packaged/sliced bread/tortilla isle at the Slaughter/Manchaca store. But I shop a bunch of HEB's across town from Parmer to Slaughter and will survey other stores as well.

        2. they do not have that at my local HEB (parmer and mcneil) but i'm going to keep looking.
          their selection has whittled down recently so who knows.

          14 Replies
          1. re: dinaofdoom

            Dina, they have them at the Super HEB at the corner of Anderson Mill and 620. I bought a package yesterday and they had more, both baguettes and rolls. They are actually hard to see. They are on the regular bread aisle, not in the bakery area. The packaging makes them blend in too much among the more brightly colored commercial breads, and the fact that the package lays flat made me almost miss them.

            1. re: stephanieh

              oh, i never go to that one (even though it's not that much farther).
              i will definitely check it out! thanks.

              1. re: stephanieh

                They still had a few rolls and three packs of baguettes when I went tonight. Picked up a pack of baguettes.

                Followed the directions to the letter and wound up with slightly underbaked bread. It was still delicious. Now I need to go buy an oven thermometer to make sure the oven is calibrated right.

                1. re: verily

                  Your oven is probably not off. I put the bread in for 12-14 minutes at 410 convection bake and it comes out fine. Even still the bread is sometimes pale, but has the right texture and more importantly, taste.

                  -sw

                  1. re: sqwertz

                    FYI - the directions say "490" degrees F, correct? Most ovens only go to 450 F. My Chambers will do 550, but I hate to heat it just for bread. I've been using the toaster oven, full blast bake, slathered in garlic butter. For the last few minutes, I put the toaster on broil. The top gets nicely brown. Actually, if you use enough butter, it runs down and browns the bottom nicely, too. I get that nice outside crunch with piping hot, soft, steamy inside bread.

                    1. re: rudeboy

                      i think this post may qualify as food porn...

                      1. re: rudeboy

                        Looking back at my first picture I posted of the baguettes, it clearly says 390F on the packages I bought.

                         
                        1. re: sqwertz

                          I guess posting pictures here is kinda useless since it shrinks them down too small to really appreciate the food (Hello Chowhound? How can we post food porn in such a small space?)

                          Anyway. See the first post in this thread, then click on the picture itself to enlarge it to it's intended size. Then the text is very legible.

                          1. re: sqwertz

                            that's because 390F is the translation for 200C (which is what the package I have in my pantry says).

                            If you do it at 375F, you 'll be fine -- it will just take a few minutes longer. (if I'm baking them, I frequently put them in alongside dinner...so they're rarely baked at the recommended temperature, but they always come out fine.)

                            They're not great baguettes, but they're pretty respectable -- most folks keep a package or two on hand for nights when you just don't feel like going to the boulangerie (or it's late, or chucking down rain, or everybody's got the flu...)

                            They are a huge private-label manufacturer here, as well.

                            1. re: sunshine842

                              Yeah, I noticed that I screwed that up (I looked at the package again yesterday). I even did a conversion on 490 F to see what temp that was in C!

                              My baguettes have been kind of toasty.....

                  2. re: dinaofdoom

                    yeah, parmer and mcneil is definitely a no-go.
                    i scoured again tonight.

                    1. re: dinaofdoom

                      Parmer/McNeil has the rolls and baguettes. Got some two weeks ago and saw them again this past weekend. They're right by the tortillas. Oh and the bread is indeed delicious--thanks for the rec from the original poster!

                      1. re: snowymt

                        strange. i looked on thursday, and again tonight.
                        they must have put them out for the weekend and then sold out.

                        1. re: dinaofdoom

                          I saw them at both McNeil and Techridge tonight,.

                          These things suffer from hard merchandising - They are easy to miss.

                          And they're pretty much gone. Last batch seems to be 03/30, but the scraps on the shelves say 03/10. There are plenty of 6-PK rolls left on most shelves, but not the half-baguettes.

                          -sw

                  3. I am a big fan also. HEB at Slaughter and Manchaca hasn't been carrying them lately, but did find them at Slaughter and Escarpment. Instructions say to dampen the bread with water before baking. Delightful!

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: RoxieB

                      I left about 16 packages of them on the shelf for you tonight at Slaughter and Manchaca. Yesterday it was practically the ONLY bread they had on the shelves at 3:00pm - which is probably why I discovered them.

                      I bought 4 more packages today. They have a different expiration date on them today (3/30/11) so they must get them in pretty often. This is what the full packages look like so everyone knows what they look like on the shelves (that always helps, IMO):

                      http://yfrog.com/49frenchbreaddisplayj

                      -sw

                      1. re: sqwertz

                        Yup!! They were really back. Got 4 packs of the rolls today, March 10th expiration. Sure hope HEB doesn't give up on them.

                        1. re: sqwertz

                          I just clicked on that link and was taken to some "Wheezer" site. But then when I closed that window and clicked it again it worked as intended. I'm sorry if anybody else got that. The link is/was genuine. In the future I'll post the direct imageshack link.

                          Or maybe I'll try this "attach photo" link here at the bottom of the window.... Duh.

                          -sw

                           
                          1. re: sqwertz

                            Yfrog and other URL shorteners have been doing that lately. Not your fault.

                      2. You are my new hero - I am on my way. Par baked bread is such a genius invention, especially when 'hounds say it tastes good!