I love bread. A base of flour, water and (sometimes) yeast can yield seemingly endless possibilities. How many shapes and flavours of bread are you familiar with? With the recent rise of ancient grains and artisan bakeries, lemi take you on a journey across the world to discover one of the its most staple foods.
𝗔𝗿𝗲𝗽𝗮𝘀 is a cornmeal bread hailing from pre-Columbian Latin America. The base is 𝘮𝘢𝘴𝘢𝘳𝘦𝘱𝘢 (cornflour cooked in water, much like Italian 𝘱𝘰𝘭𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘢) mixed with water and oil, and formed into a round patty that cooks to a cake-like consistency: golden and crispy on the outside, fluffy and spongy on the inside. Bonus points? It’s gluten-free. The stuffing varies from simply melted cheese and beans to steak and avocado. A Colombian classic is shredded chicken and avocado, while in Venezuela you can find deep-fried arepas filled with eggs. They’re a staple food in Colombia, Venezuela and Tenerife. In recent years arepas have gained world-popularity, with arepas cafés, restaurants and food trucks popping up all around the globe.
33-07 36th Ave, Queens, NY 11106, USA
My first time trying areas! I recommend the 𝗯𝗲𝗲𝗳 𝗮𝗿𝗲𝗽𝗮𝘀, with extra sauce and a generous amount of jalapenos to go along with it. As for the shredded chicken version, the texture was a little too close to tuna flakes for my liking.
No. 137-1號, Shida Road, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
Venezuelans Gus and Kathe Salguero opened 𝗔𝗿𝗲𝗽𝗮 & 𝗖𝗼 in 2014 (followed by a second branch in 2019) with the mission to introduce London to the flavours of the Venezuelan cuisine. You can get all the classics like shredded beef with black beans or chicken avocado. https://www.facebook.com/Arepaandco/
58A De Beauvoir Cres, Haggerston, London N1 5SB, UK
When it comes to bread, there is nothing as good as a crispy, fluffy, fragrant, freshly baked 𝗯𝗮𝗴𝘂𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲. Not all baguettes are created equal, though, and in South East Asia getting your hands on a good one without breaking the bank, can be a real challenge. 𝗣𝗮𝗿𝗶𝘀 𝗗é𝗹𝗶𝗰𝗲, though a fast-food chain, imports all its bread directly from France, with people assuring you it has the best baguettes in Manila.
Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines
𝗕𝗮𝗴𝘂𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲𝘀 have a lot going on for them. Not only the source of the flour and the water, but even the way the dough is worked, can all radically change its taste. And Parisian baker 𝗟𝗲𝗿𝗼𝘆 𝗠𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗶 knew it well, when in 2019 he snatched the first prize of the annual 𝘎𝘳𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘗𝘳𝘪𝘹 𝘥𝘦 𝘭𝘢 𝘉𝘢𝘨𝘶𝘦𝘵𝘵𝘦. If that is not enough to make you want to try out his bread, I don’t know what is.
203 Avenue Daumesnil, 75012 Paris, France
𝗣𝗮𝗻𝗲 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗮𝘀𝗮𝘂 is a thin and crisp flatbread with a 3000-year-old history. Sardinian shepherds often left their homes for months at a time, so they invented a bread they could carry with them and could be stored for up to a year (much like elven 𝘭𝘦𝘮𝘣𝘢𝘴). It also makes one mighty souvenir. In Italian, pane carasau is also called 𝘤𝘢𝘳𝘵𝘢 𝘥𝘪 𝘮𝘶𝘴𝘪𝘤𝘢, referring to how thin the dough is, a music sheet can be read through it.
12 Dartmouth Park Hill, Tufnell Park, London NW5 1HL, UK