In a nutshell: Dense and delicious bread packed with whole walnuts works brilliantly with all cheeses. or simply slice and slather with butter and jam.
This deliciously dense and wholesome Walnut Bread is made with stone-ground wheat flour, whole walnut kernels, and the Poilâne natural sourdough starter. Each handmade loaf is baked in their wood-fired brick ovens. It pairs perfectly with all cheeses, especially Brie, Camembert, or Vacherin. Lovely also with any fruit jams.
Details: 300g loaf, suitable for freezing. Stored in a cool, dry and place either in its bag or wrapped in a cloth this loaf will keep fresh for 3 days. No additives or preservatives.
Long before the urban bread revolution and the rise of the high street bread chains came along, there was Poilâne. Created in 1932 by Pierre Poilâne, this celebrated Parisian bakery has stood the test of time by preserving the purity of its ingredients and making the highest quality sourdough breads and other baked goods in its wood-fired ovens. Pierre retired in the 1970’s and his son, Lionel, then in his mid-twenties, took over and revolutionised the family business by also selling their breads though a network of other stores and restaurants around Paris; all proudly displaying the sign “Ici, pain Poilâne”( ‘Here, Poilâne bread’) almost as a badge of honour. Quite simply, at a time when bad bread was increasingly being eaten even by the French, he was practising and preaching the sourdough gospel. His passion for bread was legendary and some of us were lucky enough to be invited into his inner sanctum above the bakery where he had amassed an enviable library of books on the subject.
Then, tragedy struck on 31st October 2002 when both Lionel, and his wife Irena, were killed when he crashed his helicopter in a thick fog into the sea off the Brittany coast. Aged eighteen, his daughter Apollonia took over and has preserved and expanded the family business globally whilst still staying true to its founding principles—making high-quality bread for all—and in creatively joining the arts of both living and eating well. Three Poilâne generations - Pierre, Lionel, and Apollonia - have followed in each other’s footsteps, each driven by the same purpose and mantra: to offer breads made from diverse grains and slow fermentation, prioritizing quality over quantity.
As Alice Waters says: “The Poilâne bakery and the Poilâne family have revolutionized the way we think about bread, and it is deeply important that we preserve and learn from their legacy.”