Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Artisan croutons. If I had not already used my yearly allotment of f-bombs, I might have used one here. ARTISAN CROUTONS!
I worked in a grocery store bakery at age 16. In this brave new world, that apparently makes me an artisan. So let me tell you how I made the croutons.
Step 1: Collect all of the old, expired bread from the shelves.
Step 2: Run it through the slicer, one way for baguettes or both ways for loaf bread, to get cubes. (A definite OSHA violation, BTW, as the slicer was supposed to be off limits to the under 18 set)
Step 3: Drizzle with some kind of trans fat.
Step 4: Sprinkle with paprika and dried herbs.
Step 5: Bake.
Not one of those steps took skill. The old guy in the bakery didn't have to demonstrate technique to me. I didn't have to practice. He didn't have to give me the closely guarded secrets that he had accumulated in his decades as a master baker, save this one: "Croutons are just dead bread. Hurry up."
So, back to these particular croutons - I should point out that the package first calls them gourmet. Which is what I think most people mean when they misuse the word artisan. But then they go on to call them artisan as well. I want to chalk this up to a language issue since these seem to be some kind of French Canadian crouton, but realistically they are probably just intentionally exploiting the word artisan and being douchey - which I think, in French, is still douchey.