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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

S.F. Rising: European Foods' Triangle Rye

Posted By on Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 2:29 PM

European Foods' triangle-shaped rye bread. - JONATHAN KAUFFMAN
  • Jonathan Kauffman
  • European Foods' triangle-shaped rye bread.

A weekly survey of bread in San Francisco ― the baked and the fried, the

artisan and the novelty.

Triangle-shaped German bread
Source: European Foods, 3038 Clement (at 32nd Ave.), 750-0504.

Price: $4.99

Toast-appropriateness: 4/10

SFoodie has resigned ourselves to the fact that we will never again find the Vladimir Putin sausage that European Foods carried at the height of the Russian prime minister's popularity. But on a spin around the market shelves last week, we picked up another curiosity: a solid, seed-covered, triangle-shaped loaf of rye, still radiating residual warmth from the oven. When we quizzed the staff about it, they said it was baked in-house, but ignored our specific questions -- What's it called? What kind of sandwiches do I make with triangle bread? Is it rye or whole wheat? -- with a shrug. "It's German bread," the counterwoman finally admitted.

A little Googling for the origins of triangle bread led us to Bäcker Bäck, a Sacramento bakery that parbakes loaves and sells them to private and commercial customers -- such as European Foods -- who finish the baking on site. We've haven't been all that impressed over the years by airier yeasted breads prepared and finished the same way, but European Foods' dense triangle loaf turned out great: A naturally leavened rye and whole-wheat bread, studded with cracked grains, the triangle had a subtle sourness and stayed moist throughout the week. Its toasted-seed exterior kept its crackle and amplified the nuttiness of the whole grains. As toast, the triangle didn't fare so well, but sliced into thin triangles and topped with butter, smoked beef sausages, and marinated artichokes or mustard and cheddar, it made great open-faced sandwiches.

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Follow me at @JonKauffman.

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Jonathan Kauffman

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