Roberta's Bread at Smorgasburg
Some may not know this, but I've been selling bread at my Smorgasburg booth every Saturday this summer and autumn. Not just any bread, some of the best bread in NYC (actually, the East Coast -- it often gets compared to Tartine in San Fran) made by Melissa Weller at Roberta's in Bushwick.
Melissa, a former chemical engineer and French Culinary Institute alum who has worked at Babbo, Sullivan Street Bakery, and most recently as head baker at Thomas Keller’s Per Se and Bouchon Bakery in New York. Melissa kneads her bread by hand, rather than machine; this allows for slower fermentation, which gives the bread the fullest flavor possible. The loaves are then wood-fired in Roberta’s house-built oven.
The current menu is:
French Stick This is what you grab to accessorize dinner (and eat half of on the way home): A slim, crunchy-on-the-outside baguette made with Sir Galahad bread flour, water, natural leaven, sea salt, and the tiniest amount of fresh yeast. $3
Batard (aka: Fat Stick) A heftier version of our crusty French stick—it’s great for bigger dinners and heroes. Ingredients: Sir Galahad bread flour, water, natural leaven, sea salt, yeast. $4
City White In a more bucolic setting, we’d call this a country white. Coming from Bushwick, we call it a hearty city white that’s great for sandwiches; it’s made with Sir Galahad bread flour, Cayuga whole wheat flour, natural leaven, water, and sea salt. $6
Whole Wheat The star ingredient in this soft, chewy wheat loaf is flour from Cayuga Pure Organics in upstate New York. The only other ingredients: a little Sir Galahad bread flour, natural leaven, water, and sea salt. $6