Before you should have to deal with stale bread, we should really be talking about how to store your Bush Order bread and bagels as fresh as possible for as long as possible.
In order to do that we need to first understand two things.
The first, Bush Order bread and bagels are simple in the sense that there are no artificial stabilizers or softeners in our bread. For the most part, our bread is only three ingredients: organic flour, water and salt. Our bagels do have the additions of fat and sugar in the form of honey, which do act as natural softeners.
The second thing to note is our variety of packaging. Our end goal is to use compostable packaging, which helps reduce our environmental impact. This has proven very difficult to source. It is also very difficult to source packaging that is compostable and still seals in freshness. Artisan loaves use compostable kraft bags with decomposable window panes, while our bagels and sandwich bread use degradable perforated plastic bags. Both of which do not seal in freshness 100%.
The truth is we don’t mind that our products aren’t sealed 100%. In some cases, we don’t want them to. The mark of a good artisan loaf is a crusty crust with a soft, chewy crumb. If we used completely sealed bags, any moisture within the loaf would try to escape and end up softening the crust too soon. The perforated bags work in a similar way. They are designed to let out steam and moisture while sealing in freshness. They are just not very strong and have a tendency of ripping easily. Not the best for the rough-housing that happens on the Yellowknife Co-op shelves.
So here we have two types of packaging that will ultimately let our rustic loaves go stale if left on the counter for too long.
How do we prevent this from happening?
When you get home from our Saturday Bake Shop or the Yellowknife Co-op with your – baked the same day – Bush Order bread or bagels, either right away or within 24 hours, transfer them to an air-tight container or bag.
How To Store Fresh Bread
There are many different air-tight solutions you could try.
For starters, you could put the entire bag of bread or bag of bagels within an old plastic grocery bag. You know, from the drawer where everyone crams those bags for some future use. This could be just that moment. If you still have one of those drawers that is. Understandable if you do not, admirable even. Viva la Reusable Bags!
Another air-tight solution might be a dedicated container. A tupperware or glass container, if big enough works. If you want to get fancy, you could try this Bread Box, which seems to be just an upside-down tupperware container.
If you would prefer something more bag-like, may we suggest reusable silicone food bags? These reusable, washable, durable type bags are great for either leaving a loaf on the counter for easy eating access or for freezing a loaf for later.
For those who still use it, plastic wrap or cellophane wrap is another option but creates more waste. As a last resort just wrap that loaf up to prevent any surface areas from being exposed to more air.
Additional Storage Ideas
If you have an idea or a go-to solution, we want to hear from you. Leave us a comment.
Refresh Your Bread
If you store your bread or bagels for several days and the crust no longer boasts that fresh-out-of-the-oven crackle, don’t fret.
To refresh your bread follow our instructions in our previous post on reviving stale bread.