Bread 101.2 | How to store île de païn bread

All of our sourdough breads have an exceptional natural shelf life. They revive well for the first few days with a gentle re-heating or toasting.  If you do not plan to use them during the week they also freeze well. Lighter textured and smaller sized breads should be consumed within a day or two, while larger size and heavier textured breads last a few extra days.

Our secrets for exceptional taste, nutrition and shelf life

Once the flours and grains have been blended with water and our sourdough culture, the magic begins. During the ensuing fermentation process of up to three days the enzymes from the bran and germ breaks down the starches and proteins into digestible units and produce organic acid at the same time.

Writing this reminds me of how perfect nature is. By investing time in combination with ancient knowledge we receive a perfect food that is delicious, acts as a pre- and probiotic and has a shelf life that is unlike the bread we have come to accept in the last fifty years.

Extended exposure to water and live culture lactic acid bacteria and natural yeasts develop to culminate into a little gastronomic wonder. This effort is completed by a thorough and bold bake that seals in the goodness, brings out delightful, roasted aromas and at the same time activates the digestive system.  Our directly fired stone oven, built back in 2002, weighs in at over 20 tons and is the perfect edifice to transform live doughs into golden and dark brown bread loaves.

Storage at room temperature

To retain the crust, store your île de païn bread in the paper wrap you receive it in inside our reusable bread bags (pictured above). Use a plastic bag if you prefer a soft crust. The paper balances out the moisture between the bread and the cloth or plastic.

Please reuse paper and plastic bags as much as possible. Never refrigerate bread. It is the most unfavourable temperature for good bread as it exacerbates the staling process.

Slice before freezing

Unless you intend to use the entire loaf of bread within one or two days of defrosting, we strongly recommend you cut the bread into slices of the correct thickness with one of our precision bread knives by Grunter. The recommended thickness for slicing depends on the type of bread. The lighter the crumb of the bread (Bagatta, Companio…) the thicker the slice, about 2-3 cm or even more for a Baguette. The denser or heavier the crumb (Rye and Wholegrain) the thinner the slice, about 1 cm or even less as the bread matures over the week.

We’ll share more about the art of freezing and restoring great bread in our next article. Visit our online shop to discover essential tools for the baker.

Do you want to learn “how to” with Markus? Rent or purchase his fact-filled and beautifully shot film “Baguettes & Ciabattas” here.

Enjoy our delicious breakfast basket of assorted wood-fired sourdough breads from 08:00-11:00 daily at île de païn, Knysna.