Baguettes from the Placid Baker

placid baker baguettes peeking out from bags

By Daniel B.

The Capital Region has no shortage of great bakeries, each with at least one thing they do better than anyone else around. Many of them have been profiled on AOA, such as:

+ Mrs. London's classic croissants
+ Crisan's fanciful sweet treats.
+ All Good Bakers and their mean grilled cheese.
+ TC Bakery's meticulously-made macarons.
+ Bella Napoli's excellent donuts (just not the glazed ones).
+ Fluffalicious's cupcakes, especially the buttercream part of their cupcakes.
+ Eastern Parkway Price Chopper's flour dusted bialys.

But there is also a great bakery in Troy that makes great croissants, sweets (including macarons), sandwiches, and breads that has gone without praise for far too long. Where's the love for The Placid Baker?

Well, let me tell you what makes their baguette my favorite in the region.

When did crusty bread lose its crust?

I'm not kidding. The elongated loaves that try to pass for baguettes in most places are anemic shadows of the form. All you have to do is give their sides a squeeze and feel the crust yield under gentle pressure. Baguette crust does not yield. Baguette crust holds firm. If it does succumb to pressure, it cracks or breaks with shards of crumbs cascading in every direction.

With real crusty bread you have to be careful, especially when it's a 22-inch long baguette. You could hurt somebody with that thing. And if you aren't mindful about chewing, that somebody could be you. Because crusty bread can have sharp jagged edges that can pierce the roof of your mouth.

placid baker baguette crust

This is bread that commands your respect. Even if its outsides are a little rustic looking and flour dusted like the loaves produced at The Placid Baker. This is serious bread.

Biting through the substantial crust you get to the crumb within. This is surprising because there is clearly some amount of whole wheat flour in the dough, but there are plenty of air pockets to keep it on the lighter side and the whole wheat flour adds to the grainy, savory, and satisfying flavor.

placid baker baguette closeup

But the thing that puts this loaf over the top is that if you can to the bakery shortly after 10 am your baguette will be warm from the oven. Then you may just have to buy two. One to eat immediately, and one for later in the day.

The downside is that these loaves aren't cheap. Two of them set me back a total of $7. That may not seem like a lot, but that's about twice the price at famous boulangerie during a recent trip to Paris. But wine and cheese are also less expensive there, too. (For what it's worth, we can apparently get a much better deal on iPads here in our region than you can in France.)

placid baker troy exterior

I could eat the baguette from the Placid Baker for every meal. Spread it with butter and maybe some jam for breakfast. Tuck some meat and olive spread inside it for lunch. Eat it alongside cheese and a bottle of wine for dinner. Any bread that was left over could be turned into French toast, savory bread pudding, a thickening agent for soups, or even simply breadcrumbs.

Bread should never go to waste. Because even when it gets hard, it's good for something. And when it's this good, you want to eat every bit.

Daniel B. is the proprietor of the FUSSYlittleBLOG.

Find It

The Placid Baker
250 Broadway
Troy, NY 12180

Comments

a Placid Baker croissants was one of the last items i ate before having to give up wheat for health reasons. it was delicious and brought me back to Paris. Placid also makes these delicious "flat breads" that are excellent avec fromage.

go eat placid now.

I couldn't agree more. This is the only local baguette I'm willing to buy and it is worth the price. A hunk of this with some good salt butter is heaven. And if you don't want to drive to Troy, a batch of these baguettes is delivered to the Honest Weight food co-op Saturday mornings, I believe.

One of the things I miss the most when I'm dieting is the bread from Placid Baker. Their products are truly high quality, better than stuff I've had in Paris. Their pre-made sandwiches are delicious as well, and although the combinations seem unusual (and I'm finicky) just try them, you will love them

The baguettes I had in Paris recently were around € .80 or $1. People buy them by the arm load. Perhaps it's an economy of scale thing. All I know is that at $3.50 a pop I can't afford to eat bread like a Parisian.

i recommend eating a baguette w/the interesting hummus made in house - i was recently turned onto both the carrot and butternut squash varieties... delish

I've been a long time fan of the Crown Point Bread co. as well.

You are so right, Daniel. My mouth is watering from the photos! They sell at the Tuesday delmar farmer's market also. The whole loaf rarely gets home without a heel or two missing.

I stand corrected -- the baguettes are delivered to the Honest Weight Food co-op on Fridays. They also sell The Placid Baker's most excellent ciabatta.

couldnt agree more...the only thing better is a Placid Baker baguette with some Buddapesto! Like Mr. Food used to say....Its sooooo good

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