The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Eric Kayser!!!!

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lumos's picture
lumos

Eric Kayser!!!!

As some of you already know, my daughter is on  a week holiday in Paris with her friends, with whom she's spent many years together at her old school (some of them since they're only seven) ;  8 girls,  the last time together before setting off to new unis from this autumn.   Before she departed, I gave her a very important mission of buying me a few bags  of authentic, real French bread flour, namely T55 and T65, for me, naturally.

She rang me last night to report her mission was accomplished (3 bags each of T 55 & 65..... Yay!) and asked if I wanted any bread, too.  I told her not to bother, because, even in Paris, it's not easy to buy really good bread, unless you know where to get it or you're very lucky. (Unlike in London, you don't have to be 'extremely' lucky. Just 'very' lucky will still do in Paris. )

But just now, she rang me again and asked if I'd ever heard of 'Eric Kayser.'  With my heart racing, I  immediately said, 'YES! That's one of the BEST!'  Then she said, 'Well, it's not flour, you know, but we just bought a few bread there for lunch.  I've already eaten the one with olives in, and it was quite good, so  I bought another one for you, a plain one.  Thought you might prefer like that.  Is Pain Rustique alright?' 

.......Pain Rustique?   Pain Rustique of Eric Kayser ?! Of course it's alright!!  It's MORE than alright!!!! It's perrrrrrrfect!!!!!

I'm soooooo proud of my daughter!! More proud than when she got the offers from all the unis she applied! :p 

So, my daughter is bringing me back THE LE Pain Rustique by M.Eric Kayser (though more than likely made by his staff, not him-holy-self) tomorrow!!!! If any of those ***** rioters distract any of London transportation network to hinder my bread's daughter's safe return home, I'll ****them! I mean it!

lumos @ over-the-moon

 

lumos's picture
lumos

Sorry for being a serial poster....again.

My daughter's just rang again.  Her friend's find an article on Eric Kayser's 'Boule....something something' (she couldn't remember, but I think it's his sourdough boule.....I...hope...) in her guide book, so she's on her way back to Maison Kayser to get it for me, too!

Have I told you how much I'm proud of her? :p

......Maybe I should contact Metropolitan Police to get them escourt them her back home tomorrow evening.

copyu's picture
copyu

I've had a couple of outstanding baguette sandwiches recently from "Maison Kayser" in Tokyo...just wondering if there's a connection to Eric K that you know of...it's not a particularly common French surname, as far as I know...former students or franchisees, perhaps? 

I'm enjoying your baguette and flour adventures and escapades!

Adam

lumos's picture
lumos

I.  AM. VERY.  JEALOUS, Adam!! .....yes, the Maison Kayser you had your wonderful sandwich IS one of 19 branches Eric Kayser himself opened (not literally, you know...)  in Japan.   'Maison Kayser' is the name of his boulangerie chains, both in France and abroad). It's not quite a franchise. He teamed up with a Japanese baker who became his business partner for the operation of Maison Kayser in Japan. All the senior bakers are trained in Paris and also they have always have 2 French  bakers from their HO in Paris to supervise the business and the actual baking plus training younger bakers.

M. Kayser also often visits Japan to make sure the standard is maintained to his satisfaction, and some years ago he even made a contract with one of the major millers in Japan to produce their flagship own brand flour 'Maison Kayser Traditional' in Japan to sell to Japanese market, which has been one of the most popular flour among both pro-bakers and home bakers. (that means you can buy it, too!!!   ::double JEALOUS::)

As far as I've read in various sources, their baguette (THE famous Kayser Monge) is one of the most popular baguettes in Japan, though there're are so many competitors around. So you can praise your taste bud for detecting its deliciousness! :)

You know what?  Get your wife to buy this book  for your next birthday or X'mas, whichever comes earlier.  You can get all sorts of necessary info about baguettes to buy and where, various flour you can get your own hand on and even the formulae, too. ;)

 

ETA: 

Official Site for Maison Kayser Japan

Article on Maison Kayser in Japan when they opened the first branch in 2002 (Sorry, I can't remember if you can read Japanese or not. If not, please ask your wife to translate it for you....nicely. )

 

ETA2 : You might want to try Viron's baguette next. Heard it's the most popular lately. Your mission : Report me back...please!!

 

 

 

copyu's picture
copyu

Thank you very much, lumos, for the prompt and detailed reply...it just so happens I was a 'September baby'...Hmm! I'll help my wife with the book ordering...

The way you 'waxed lyrical' about the baguettes you've tried and the ones you've baked made me wonder...I'm so happy to hear that "EK" is somehow behind the operation!

I had walked past 'Maison Kayser' many times without stopping very long...not long enough to buy anything, anyway. I was usually in a rush. A few weeks ago, I bought a baguette sandwich with ham and Emmental cheese there, expecting it to explode into my lap with mayonnaise (the way the usual "Parisienne Sando" does from Tokyo bakeries!) This, however, was unadulterated joy. Brilliant, chewy and crusty baguette with excellent ham, Emmental (French Emmental, I could just tell! We preferred the French to the Swiss on both taste and price, but mostly on PRICE. It used to be less than half the price of the Swiss, so we know it well and love it!) There was a smear of good French mustard on the top of the sandwich.

A couple of days ago, I had to get my hair cut and I decided to leave home early and forego breakfast at home, because I knew I could get one of these excellent sandwiches again! I was not disappointed. Brilliant!

I understand your passion for the 'real baguette' (whatever that means to other readers!)

As always, thanks for the great info and very best wishes! (I will report if/when I get the chance to try "Viron"),

Adam   

lumos's picture
lumos

I had walked past 'Maison Kayser' many times without stopping very long...not long enough to buy anything, anyway

If it wasn't long enough to buy anything, what did you stop there for, I wonder....:p

Gosh, your description of how the baguette sandwich tasted and and its texture just makes me drooooool, in a BIG way! ....though I've never heard of French Emmental.....Thought it was Swiss....?

Yes, I know the overload of mayonnaise  in some sandwiches (often in that soft and fluffy Igirisu Pan or shoku pan) from some bakeries in Japan (there're quite a seriously  huge population of severe mayonnaise-addicts in Japan), but there's a quite a number of boulangeries and delicatessen who offer you much more decent sandwiches without the obligatory ocean of mayonnaise in it.  When you get the baguette book for your birthday (Hello, my fellow September baby!) , go through the list of bakeries on the back of the book. I think many of them do sell sandwiches  or other savory bread products of some sort in their premises that is not too Japanised. 

And you know what? .....Study Japanse harder!!! With the language, and you'll be able to get all the useful foodie info you've been missing!! :p

Best wishes,

lumos

 

copyu's picture
copyu

but it's a kind-of 'generic term' as the people who lived in that particular 'valley' didn't demand any special 'rights' to the name, the way the 'Napolitana' pizza or the 'Parmigiano-Reggiano' cheese people did! American and Oz 'Emmental' are pretty good, too...some taste a bit more 'walnutty' than others, but that's only because of the milk they use.

I've been studying cheese a bit from 3-4 books and discovered that 'Gruyere' and 'Emmental' are the same in every way, but ONE! The size (weight/mass) of a Gruyere is half that of an Emmental and the aging is only slightly shorter (sometimes)...the 'holes' in Gruyere are smaller as a result. I had an argument with a friend about this, long before we had the internet and before I'd ever bought books about cheese...A cookbook of mine said to use 'Emmental or Gruyere' in a recipe. I couldn't taste a difference, but my friend 'thought' he could...'real' Emmental and 'real' Gruyere use the identical ingredients from the same cows, the same starter cultures, the same salt sources and proportions...it's only the size that's different. Parma cheese and Reggio cheese, similarly, couldn't be distinguished by the finest tasters in Europe, so it had to be re-named, (if Italian) as 'Parmigiano-Reggiano' (at the insistence of the Reggio cheese-makers, who were upset that people called their product 'Parma' cheese.)

(I hope this post doesn't start a flame-war...people who love Emmental and hate Gruyere or vice versa...)  Looking forward to the book!

BW

Adam

lumos's picture
lumos

Well, Adam, you'd be hanged in that lovely, little, Disneyland-like 'village' square in Gruyere for saying their cheese is same as Emmental to warn the tourists, you know....

But, really, whatever your cheese book says, I agree with your friend that they are different.  Maybe not so much the taste (though I think Emmental is milder than Gruyere and has a slight hint of sweetness, while Gruyere is more savory), but they definitely smell different, especially when it's cooked. Gruyere is much stronger and sharper than Emmental. Maybe be because Gruyere is brined while Emmental is not.  Even when it's not cooked, the aroma you get in your nose just as the cheese passes the back of your mouth are different from Emmental to Gruyere. The latter is sharper and lingers on longer. So there! Get another cheese book!  :p

Re; French Emmental... OK, I admit I've never heard or had French Emmental. So I have nothing to say about the difference between French one and Swiss one.  But I have heard of and tasted and quite liked French Gruyere, though, in the name of Comte!! :)

copyu's picture
copyu

I'll try to avoid the 'hanging' by biting my tongue if/when I visit Europe. I want to catch up with some friends in Aix en Provence, so it might not be too far in the future. (Next spring, perhaps?) Now you had to mention 'Comte'! <GRRR!>I didn't grow up with it, and don't know it, except by name, so I just look past it, on the rare occasions that I see it in import shops. [BUT: How do we classify "Jarlsberg"? It works very well, when cooked, in any recipe that calls for Emmental or Gruyere! Heheheh!]

When I lived in Australia, we used to have 'blind' wine-tasting dinner parties every couple of months or so...5 (usually red) wines, all domestic, labelled with letters of the alphabet. All participants had to make their notes and try to pick the grape varieties, region, date...even the label, if possible. We also ranked them from "best-to-worst". One of the five was always a 'brummy' picked from a bargain shelf in the liquor store for $5-10. The cheapies often rated quite highly—in the middle of the pack, or one step higher. I think the labels of the cheapest wines, from good wineries, were most often correctly identified, as well...I suppose familiarity breeds...um...familiarity!

I've done a few small, similar efforts with single malt whiskies and beers, but I'd be interested in trying this with some cheeses, as well. The results would be as surprising as the other tasting tests I've participated in. I've tried all my friends and family on the $100/bottle against the $35/bottle of whisky from the same distillery...the cheaper one always got higher ratings, because most people I know are members of the mythical sub-species of person tagged 'Homo economicus'...I'll classify myself as one of those, as well...the chances of me spending $100 for a bottle of anything, ever again, are declining rapidly! ;-)

As always, best wishes!

Adam

lumos's picture
lumos

I like Comte, but not necessarily a huge fan, not because it’s not good (it IS good) but for that sort of hard cheese I have something I prefer…like very mature Manchego or Appenzeller or, better still, my absolute favourite in that category,  27-months matured Parmigiano Reggiano! When I first tasted it, it instantly changed my concept of ‘Parmesan cheese’ completely.

For me, Jarlsberg is in a completely different category from Emmental or Gruyere for me. It’s milder, softer and I find it lacks a sort of ‘character’ Emmental or Gruyere has. And the texture is completely different. I tend to use it when I don’t want the strength of Emmental or Gruyere, never as an alternative to them.

 

I agree, more expensive wine (or many other things) isn’t necessarily tastier, but I must admit the best wine I’ve ever tasted was the second most expensive one. Hope you’ll forgive me for it wasn’t the MOST expensive one. :p

 As for whisky, if you have a chance to pop over to UK while you’re in Europe, this is worth hunting down for.

Lochside 

It is so smooth and rounded, but still with very deep flavour, it almost tastes like cognac though it still has the typical edge of Scotch. You can only get it only at a few places in London, but if you go to Whisky Bar at Atheneum Hotel in Mayfair,  I’m sure you can taste it.  And the bar tenders are so helpful and wonderful, you can also learn lots of things from them. (Even you don’t like Lochside, they’ll surely find you something you’d like) They even have set menus of Scotch + matching cheese!

There was another Scotch I also liked as much as Lochside, but my aging brain is refusing to recall it….. There was a small specialist whisky shop on Greek Street, Soho, where you could buy both many years ago (it was the ONLY place you could buy these in London), but I don’t think it’s there anymore.  

best wishes,

lumos

varda's picture
varda

Your daughter deserves a medal - most teenagers would not make a bakery stop.   -Varda

lumos's picture
lumos

She's got a frightening mother she has to please. :p

 

ETA :Forgot to ask.... Have you got the baguette photos from your daughter yet?

varda's picture
varda

Apparently pictures have been taken, but not posted or emailed as of yet.   Darn her for preferring to work on her master's thesis instead of helping me to obsess about bread.  -Varda

lumos's picture
lumos

Yeah, I know. Some people don't seem to have any sense of priority.... Have to make sure my daughter won't work too much when she starts her uni. The uni she's going to have a reputation that you can only choose two from 1) study, 2) socialize, 3) sleep.  Eating seems to be out of option.....

lumos

moma's picture
moma

Lumos - I bet you taught your daugther well ;)

lumos's picture
lumos

Thanks, moma. Yes, she has learned well enough not to mess with her mother. :p

 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

heheheheheheheh.... Lumos!

Congrats on your New Flours, looking forward to see your bakes with them.

lumos's picture
lumos

You know, Khalid... I have actually been afraid someone would say that.  I mean, with those new, properly French, authentic T55 and T 65, I've got not excuse anymore about the result of my baguette making at all!! 

::sigh:: Maybe I should've kept quiet about it.....  Or maybe I can blame English weather for my failure. A lot of people do that here for anything, you know. Handy!  :p

Mebake's picture
Mebake

At ease Lumos! I have nothing but time :)

lumos's picture
lumos

Yes, time is eternal, as always has been, but I'm only getting 6 bags!

lumos's picture
lumos

French flour update:

My daughter rang just now, a bit worried if a custom officer wouldn't be too suspicious of her carrying so much 'white flour' in her suitcase....  Told her carry the bags in a carrier bag from the supermarket she bought the flour from, and it should be alright. (PLEASE be it alright!!!)

IF  worst cames worst and they're confiscated to be incinerated, I'll send the officer a detailed procedure for how to 'burn' those flour to make beautiful loaves of bread.

Daisy_A's picture
Daisy_A

Ha, ha, ha, lumos - you must have brought her up well, taught her the right values and so on...

Also, historically, getting bread and flour back to one's family at times of civil unrest has frequently been a major priority...

Think the flour in the supermarket bag idea is a good one. 

Go girl! Hope she passes all the barricades. 

Best wishes, Daisy

lumos's picture
lumos

... historically, getting bread and flour back to one's family at times of civil unrest has frequently been a major priority...

LOL  (literally!)  Never thought about that! Brilliant one, Daisy!

 They're at some good restaurant (to their standard during the stay. They put themselves on a self-imposed tight budget, so they'd been cooking by themselves most of the times) to celebrate the last meal in Paris at the moment.  So the only remaining worry is if they enjoy themselves too much and miss the Eurostar this evening.....or forget the bags of flour and bread at the restaurant....

BW, lumos

p.s. Reply to PMs is on the way....almost....!

 

lumos's picture
lumos

If anyone is interested, I just posted a blog about the first tasting of one of the breads my daughter bought for me.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi lumos,

Eric Kayser is one of the bakers featured in Kaplan's book "Good Bread is Back".

I'd love to acquire a copy of his Baguette Technologie.   Don't suppose you know whether it's ever been published in English?

All good wishes

Andy

lumos's picture
lumos

The most detailed explanations  about his method I've read are in Japanese, I'm afraid.  But if you could give me a few days, I'll be very happy to translate them and send you by PM.  Though they're all articles from internet or a book aimed for general public (with a bread geek gene),  not for pro-bakers. So it may not what you're looking for.  But in the baguette book (which is called 'Baguette Techniques' in Japanese)  I have, I found a formula of levain based baguette by a baker who was trained by Eric Kayser. Not sure how close his recipe is to M.Kayser's, but if you're interested, I can translate it for you, too.

lumos

bikerbaker's picture
bikerbaker

His website is available in French and English. Here's the link to the English version.

http://www.maison-kayser.com/en/

In the "Our Books" section, "Baguette Technologie" is not listed listed...nor is it in the French version! But there is a "Contact Us" link that you might find helpful.

lumos's picture
lumos

The website is a HP of Maison Kayser (the link posted in the top post of this thread) for a promotional purpose and all the information there are for more general public, including the book list. The book Andy is talking about was, I believe, written  for the professionasl.