Bread Basket

Why is France Trying to Add the Baguette to the UNESCO Heritage List?

Bread making is one of those things that gained interest among people seeking to do something during the pandemic, and no wonder! It is one of the first artisanal professions in the world, and especially in Central Europe, it has become a huge business that is part of people’s everyday lives.

In France, those long shaped breads called baguettes have always been part of the national identity, and most of us are familiar with the stereotypes of the French walking or cycling along the Seine while carrying one. But why is French bread so good, then? Why has it become such a key part of the society that France is seeking international recognition for it? 

According to France 24, around 10 billion baguettes are eaten in France each year - not to mention how many baguettes are bought every day. This level of consumption only shows the importance of baguettes to the French society and how they fit into people’s daily lives. Although it might seem very ordinary to a layman, the making of baguettes is more of a science than you might think. Artisanal bakers and industrial factories alike have to work within strict rules, including how long and heavy the bread can be. For over a century, baguettes have developed into the standard we now take for granted.

Of course, those of us not living in France don’t have unlimited access to fresh local baguettes every day. But with those numbers, how hard can it be to make a baguette yourself? Why not try it yourself at home?

What you need:

- Flour

- Water

- Salt

- Yeast

Yes, it’s really that simple - four basic ingredients are all that is needed to make a typical French baguette! Now, many of these recipes that you can find online require “starters” and thus ingredients most of us don’t have, so I’m providing a great link I found for making the baguettes as easily as possible. One word of warning, though - while the bread doesn’t take many ingredients to make, it does take a lot of time! Make sure to reserve an afternoon, evening, or indeed an early morning if you want to do it the way the French bakers do!

Here’s the link! Don’t worry if you’re not a fan of this one in particular, there are plenty of good baguette recipes out there. The sky's the limit!