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Not As Good As Pork Cracklins

misadventures in cooking

Friday, October 26, 2007


Today's bread is Pugliese, pronounced "pool-yee-AY-zee".

A lovely photograph of it graces the cover of The Bread Bible. It's described as a simple, crusty bread from Puglia, the Apulia region of Italy. It is made using part durum flour, the hardest of all varieties of wheat, low in gluten, and supposedly gives the bread "an especially delicious, nutty/sweet flavor, pale golden crumb, and exceptionally fine, chewy crust."

Except that durum flour was nowhere to be found in Austin, TX. I found semolina (which is the same wheat, but coarsely ground) everywhere. No durum. Rose says that it may be labeled "extra fancy pasta flour" or "patent durum flour" or "farina grade". So I kept my eyes peeled for any of those terms. Nada.

I resisted ordering it from King Arthur Flour. It just seems silly to pay $5.95 in shipping for $4.50 of flour. But after weeks of thinking about it and checking every local source I knew, I caved. I decided that in the grand scheme of things, $10 wasn't that much money, and I'd get lots of loaves of bread from it.

No sooner did I order it, than Central Market began carrying darling little two-pound bags of farina. I kid you not. I spent $10 for something I could have paid $1.89 for. This better be some darn good bread.

The dough was incredibly soft and silky. I just wanted to hold it. I did bake it, and the resulting bread is very good. In fact, I might even say "excellent", but for the fact that I've been hopelessly spoilt by the homemade sourdough.


At 11/02/2007 5:23 PM, Blogger brian said...

Whoa, whoa, you're in Austin? I've had your blog in my RSS reader for a while now and only just managed to notice that. I'm in Austin, too!

The bread looks great. I'm about to start tackling that, myself, now that I'm about to renew my athletic regimen with a big more vigor and my waistline won't tolerate much more of the dessert-heavy cooking I've been doing. Your bread looks fantastic.

At 11/02/2007 5:30 PM, Blogger Amy said...

Why thank you. You're very kind. I'm not sure how we found each other's food blogs; we must have some mutual cooking friend.

Yes, I am in Austin. Not sure what your renewed athletic regimen is, but I coach for Rogue Running and if you ever want to join us for a run, you'd be highly welcome. Just let me know and I can make it so.

At 11/02/2007 5:39 PM, Blogger brian said...

Unfortunately I don't run - bad knees. Although I was thinking recently of trying capoeira. For now, I bike, climb, and practice yoga (Iyengar) and infrequently swim. My friend Ali's a runner and triathlete, though; I wonder if you know her. Personal trainer, thin, petite, cheerful.


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