For NY bread bakers

Joined Apr 5, 2002
I was discussing hard rolls and breads with a friend from Florida and he asked what it is we do in NY that makes our hard rolls, bagels and pizza crusts taste so great. He said the baker at his restaurant wants to truck in water from NY to see if it's the key to the great taste and texture. I'm not a professional baker and I don't do breads anyway so I was no help to him but I have worked in NY bake shops and noticed some bakeries used bottled water so I don't think it's the water(I told him the key ingredient was NY attitude:D). So now I'm curious, what do you think is the key to our breads, etc? I'd like to know what the experts think:chef:
Joined Mar 6, 2001
I think it's customers that appreciate good products that demand them or you loose business. And bread baking artisians who take bread baking seriously.

Just a note: I live in the Chicago Burbs and the tastes of the majority always rules. Just last weekend my husband and I got bagels at the only relatively decent shop around and they caved in with their formula (now they have soft bagels, yuk!)! Chewie bagels DON'T SELL, you have to drive for a 1/2 hour and find a Jewish deli to find a good bagel. Over and over I've heard friends, co-worker even family say how much they like these big soft bagels. We've had decent bagel shops attempt to crack the market here, only to go under in a couple of months.

Even for a decent hard roll you have to drive into the City...all they sell is soft (non-flavorful) rolls around here.
Joined Aug 14, 2000
I think that's it! I think the water thing is the stuff of urban legend:) I think Anna's attitude comment and Wendy's comment about a demanding audience, add up to why we have great bread in NYC.
Joined Jul 28, 2001
Most of these reports are from snowbirds. It is fact though. You have a hard time reproducing the type of bread that NYer's are used to. Most of the local flours in Florida are spring/soft and that combined with the humidity and highly filtered water gives you a softer product. I have a buddy who ships in a patent from NJ and has a pretty good following there.
Mbcakes, I would tell your friend to ship in some of the hardest flour(KA) I could find and try that before shipping in water. I'm refering to the hard rolls now. I would also suggest to them that they par-bake, then finish for service.
NY has great bread? fnf, hit it on the head.
Also, if you start taking action on the side and increase the size of your gold chains your bread will improve.
Joined Apr 5, 2002
Hey watch it Panini, might be a pair of concrete shoes out there with your name on 'em!:D Eh-oh, I hear swimming in the Hudson is good this time of year----talk about your great NY water :p Seriously now, I'm going to pass on your flour suggestions, etc and see what results they get. Thanks!

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