The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Cambodian-French Bread

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varda's picture
varda

Cambodian-French Bread

My daughter is in Cambodia for the summer working on her master's project.    I asked her if there was good bread in Cambodia.   I guess I was expecting some cool and unknown to me Asian varieties.   She surprised me by saying that there was a lot of very good very cheap French bread.   I asked her to send me some pictures to post on this site.   Here is what she sent:

From the looks of it, I think she's right about the quality.   Now I have to go back to David Snyder's post on shaping and see how to recreate the fabulous shapes of these batards.   I also like the cross scoring on the last one.    Any ideas about what these might be?  -Varda

foodslut's picture
foodslut

... the bahn-mi sandwich is based on baguettes - not surprising, given the history, but I'm surprised it's hung on so long.  Spotted this about a bit of the history of French bread in what used to be known as Indochina:

http://wwwbaguetteindochina-somkieth.blogspot.com/

Thanks for sharing the GREAT pix!

varda's picture
varda

for the interesting link.  -Varda

lumos's picture
lumos

Yay, at last!! :D   So she's finally come to a sense there's more important thing in the world than researching for her master's course, then....like sending her mum the bread photos. :p  They're all lovely pictures...and interestingly they look very much like middle-of-range bakeries in Japan, the sort you see in any town.

I've heard there are lots of quite authentic-ish French style bakeries in the countries in that region because of their colonial past, but the darker coloured baguettes in the second photo certainly look very, very yummy!  Is that what your daughter first reported you about, I wonder....  Any report about the taste of any of those?

Thanks for sharing this, Varda, and big thanks for your daughter for taking those and sending it to her bread-geek mother!

lumos

 

varda's picture
varda

we're going to get a taste report that would satisfy us from my daughter.   She has other interests.   And who's calling who a bread geek?   Actually my husband has adopted the term bread-head to describe me.  -Varda

lumos's picture
lumos

My daughter calls me Mrs.Baker these days....

Look forward to the tast report!! :))

fermento's picture
fermento

...on my way out taking a loaf in a basket to my neighbours, my daughter called me Little Bread Riding Hood... (I'm a guy, so I think I resemble the big bad wolf more!)

Kym.

PS, loved Vietnamese bread.

varda's picture
varda

presumably you weren't going over to the neighbors to eat them, so perhaps your daughter's characterization was more accurate.   It seems that there are many names for us home bread bakers.  Hopefully mostly affectionate and well meant.  -Varda (aka bread head)

fermento's picture
fermento

Ha, you may well be right Varda... I don't usually feel the need to huff and puff and blow houses down when I see little piggies.  : ))

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

The breads displayed above are likely from The Blue Pumpkin--a bakery and cafe with several locations in Cambodia, and possibly owned and/or managed by a French pastry chef. It's quite popular amongst tourists. In comparison, local Cambodians aren't familiar with most of the baked goods offered by The Blue Pumpkin. Moreover, the local citizens of Cambodia typically prefer French breads with soft cottony crumb and tender pale brown crusts.

To help substantiate my comment, I have lived in Cambodia for approx. 4 years.

varda's picture
varda

I posted this awhile ago.   In reading about breads in this part of the world it seems to be completely a French import and only people in the cities eat it.   And all the bakers at least at some point trained by the French.   But interesting the other distinction you are making - one bread for tourist tastes and another for local.    I can't ask my daughter if you are right about the bakery, as right now she is off in some other part of the world.   Thanks for commenting.  -Varda