Thursday, July 31, 2014

M.H. Bread & Butter

M.H. Bread & Butter is a small artisan bakery and cafe located up in San Anselmo.  I haven't ever been there, and I don't think you can find their goods anywhere in San Francisco, although they do distribute to a few places around Marin.

I had never heard of M.H. Bread & Butter until I attended an event, and someone brought a few of their baked goods.  Never one to turn down a baked good, I tried them out, even though I had no expectations.  I was impressed with everything I had, and later found out the owner is a former baker from Tartine, which makes total sense to me, the croissants were very similar.

If I ever find myself up in San Anselmo, I'll be sure to check them out!
Croissant.  $3.25.
The croissant was a textbook croissant.  And I don't mean that as an insult.  The exterior was shiny, flaky, and crisp.  The inside, layered and moist.  It was insanely buttery.

Plain croissants are rarely something I want.  Almond or chocolate croissants make sense to me.  As do savory ham and cheese versions.  To me, a plain croissant is useful only as a building block for something bigger: fried egg and cheese on a plain croissant?  Sure!  Use it instead of sliced bread for a lunchtime sandwich?  Again, no problem.  Use it to make bread pudding?  Oh, yes please!  But just a plain croissant? Meh.

But this was a very good version of something I'm not all that excited by.  And once I added some jam to it, I was perfectly happy.

[ No Photo ]
Banana Date Walnut Bread.  $3.

I didn't take a photo of the banana date walnut bread, mostly because I thought I'd just try a bite and move on.  I'm not really one for breakfast breads, particularly banana bread.  Perhaps every once in a while I like a slice of thick banana bread, toasted, and slathered with cream cheese.  But generally just not something I'm excited about.

An event I was at had slices of this out, and it wasn't labelled, so I didn't even know what it was, besides that it was a thick slice of a breakfast quick bread.  It seemed like a banana bread base, although I didn't really taste much banana.  It was very, very moist.  It was absolutely loaded up with walnuts, which gave it a great crunch.  The entire thing was sweet though, with a complex sweetness that I think may have come from dates (indeed, I contacted the bakery later and found out there were dates).  And the very top had some kind of gooey goodness.  I know, not the best description, and I really wish I'd taken a photo!

I really liked it, particularly with a cup of coffee.  Like I said, I'm not one for coffee cakes or quickbreads, but this worked very, very well.
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