2013 Gift Guide: Day Thirteen

December 7, 2013

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I was introduced to Hot Bread Kitchen through their wonderful tortillas: handmade with stone-ground organic corn, they're like no tortillas I’ve encountered before. Deliciously resilient, they actually taste like corn.

The tortillas became such a staple in my house that I began sniffing around, trying to find out who was making them. That's when I discovered that Hot Bread Kitchen is more than a bakery; it’s an enterprise dedicated to giving low-income immigrant women professional experience.  The breads, which are inspired by the native countries of the bakers, are merely the starting point of a very ambitious program of scholarships and job placement. (Some of their trainees have gone on to work at instututions like Daniel.) But this is a two-way street; part of Hot Bread Kitchen’s mission is introducing Americans to a whole new world of breads.

The breads themselves are wonderful.  One of my favorites is

Moroccan M’smen,

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thin, floppy, flaky flat breads that have the texture of butterfly wings and the flavor of butter. 

Persian Nan-E Qandi,

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a sweet bread made with milk and honey, is a perfect afternoon snack.

Their crisp Armenian Lavash crackers

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have real crunch when you take a bite.

And this time of year they’re making traditional German Christmas Stollen

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filled with dried fruit and nuts. The layer of marzipan running through this sweet bread keeps it moist and tender.

Their Global Bread Box, containing all four breads makes a wonderful Christmas present. (The breads all freeze well.)  At $70 it’s more than just another silly gift: it's a fine way to welcome new citizens to our country.  

 

 

 

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