Cranberry Walnut Bread: Superhero And Super Scrumptious

Most people don’t know this, but we have a team of superheroes working double time for us at La Tour Bakery. By day, they are delicious looking, aromatically upstanding citizens. By night, they don culinary capes and protect our palates against forgettable flavors. Today, a momentous occasion will take place. Today, we will reveal their secret identities.

First, we have Cranberry Walnut Bread. You may know this character by its other name – Cranberry Walnut Crisps. Next, we have its partner Raisin Walnut Bread who, when the sun goes down, transforms into Raisin Walnut Crisps. Our third individual is Kalamata Olive Bread, which is the secret identity of Kalamata Olive Crisps, a particularly popular hero in Greece. And finally, rounding out the stellar line-up is Roasted Garlic Bread, also known as Roasted Garlic Crisps, a much feared superhero amongst bland culinary enemies.

Let’s take a closer look at one of our most popular individuals – Cranberry Walnut Bread. This bread is a delicious sourdough with a crunchy crust and soft, moist, chewy interior. But it’s got secret powers – when you take your first bite, you’ll initially taste the familiar, lightly sour taste, but then your flavorful experience will be punctuated by sweet, tangy pieces of cranberry and bitter, crunchy chunks of walnut. There’s a lot going on, but it works. Our Cranberry Walnut Bread handles the pressure of the spotlight with ease, but it can also graciously and deliciously take a supporting role – just check out the following recipe from PaniniHappy: Turkey-Apple Salad Melt Panini.

But when duty calls, our Cranberry Walnut Bread quickly undergoes a transformation  and emerges an entirely new individual – Cranberry Walnut Crisps. How? Well, we take a loaf of Cranberry Walnut Bread and slice it super thinly. Then, we baste the slices with butter, coat them with sugar, and toast them up until they’re crunchy and glistening. What you get is an addictive and sophisticated snack that is both sweet and sour, light yet buttery.

Catch our breads and crisps in action today and every Monday from 3pm to 7pm at the University Avenue market, packing a punch and kicking your taste buds into high gear. They’re saving the world, one palate at a time.

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Brownies: Eating Under Their Influence

Never underestimate the capability of a brownie – it has more power than we can even begin to imagine. There’s something about a brownie that, when you catch sight of one, or may the force  be with you, catch whiff of one, it consumes you. And in just a few swift seconds, against all your better judgment, you’ll be consuming it. Let’s be clear – once you’re under the seductive influence of a brownie, there’s nothing you can do.

Take the following situation. You’re at work, minding your own business and typing away at your computer, when a well-intentioned co-worker drops by, places a brownie on your desk, and exits with an innocent smile, pretending like she didn’t just drop a ticking time bomb in your lap.

Even if you weren’t in the mood for dessert before, now you are. In fact, you’ve got this intense, overpowering craving that can only be satisfied by one thing – a brownie. It sits on your desk, staring at you. it even seems to speak to you: “Forget that resolution you made this morning to only eat granola bars and salad all day. Look at how fudgy, chocolaty, and delicious I am. It’s so easy. Give in to the temptation. You know you want to. Just do it. ” Even though you just hallucinated, you try to convince yourself that you’re sane and in control of the situation. You buckle down, call upon your discipline, and ignore that brownie. You stare at the computer screen, but you can’t concentrate. You glance at it. Then you quickly avert your eyes.  Then it happens. You forget your willpower, your promises to yourself, your judgment, and you dive for the brownie. The first bite is not just good, it’s divine, glorious, awesome. It’s everything you ever imagined, and so much more.

Our brownies are no exception. Believe us, we’re speaking from personal experience. They’re dense, fudgy, and utterly sinful. When you sink your teeth into them, the rich, gooey, and smooth chocolate overwhelms your senses and leaves you on a cloud of sweet euphoria. You take another bite, and this time, you find a chunk of wonderful walnut. The combination of silky chocolate and crunchy walnut is formidable, and your taste buds are powerless against it. You think there’s just no way it can get any better. And then it does. You take a sip of cold, refreshing milk, and the impossible becomes possible.

Sooner than you expect, the brownie’s gone. You rack your brains – where did it go? You want more. No, you need more. And off you go on the hunt for chocolaty satisfaction.

Can you handle the brownie experience? Can you eat just one? Drop by every Friday from 7am to 2pm at the Fort Street Mall market and from 3pm to 7pm at the Momilani Community Center market, and let us know. Even if you’re the most disciplined, rational person in the world, there’s no saying what you’ll do when eating under the influence of the brownie.

Lavosh: Cracker Or Bread?

We’ve been making lavosh at La Tour Bakehouse for quite some time, and we’re pretty sure we’ve nailed down how to make a delicious lavosh by now. It all starts with the dough, which is made from scratch in the early morning every single day. After we run the dough through a machine that rolls it into a nice uniform thickness (or rather thin-ness), we spread it over a sheet pan, cut it into squares (we omit this step if we want full sheets), and bake it in the oven. What comes out is a super natural, satisfyingly crunchy, and surprisingly light lavosh, perfect for any occasion.

However, while we’ve mastered how to produce lavosh, we can’t purport to be experts on all aspects of the topic. For one, we still haven’t figured out the answer to the question “Is lavosh a cracker or a bread?”. And so, we embark on the search for truth. Online, of course.

Luckily for us, we don’t have to venture too far. According to the Epicurious Food Dictionary, lavosh (pronounced lah-vohsh and also spelled lahvosh, lavash, lawaash, and lawasha ) is an Armenian cracker bread. So, there’s our answer we’ve been looking for –  lavosh is both cracker and bread. That makes sense. On the one hand, it’s light and simple enough to serve the function of a cracker – a fine accompaniment for jams, cheeses, and meats or a healthier, less salty alternative to  potato chips.  On the other hand, though, it’s substantial and complex enough to provide the base for entire meals.

To help convince you of its magical powers, here are several recipes courtesy of the Food Network, the Good Food Channel, and a fellow blogger that showcase lavosh in a multitude of ways.

Appetizer: Lavosh Nachos with Cauliflower Guacamole

Salad: Mixed Green Salad with Lavosh

Entrée: Smoked Cheese and Ham Lavosh Pizzas

Dessert: Apple and Cranberry Dip with Lavosh

There you have it, folks. The versatile cracker bread that does it all. Don’t waste any more time, energy, money, and mostly importantly, taste, on those generic saltines or high-end pita chips. We have an array of lavosh flavors to suit all of your needs and desires – plain, sesame, taro, mango, polenta, fennel, and macadamia nut – and we’re serving them up today and every Thursday from 5:30pm to 7pm at the Kailua market . Get crackin’!

Puffs: A Bite That Won’t Bite Back

Most people associate bakeries with buttery, calorie-laden goodies like croissants, Danishes, muffins, and scones. It’s true, La Tour Bakehouse does produce scrumptious versions of all of these. However, it would be a huge mistake, and we’ll even go as far as to say injustice, to assume that guilty pleasures are all we have to offer.

Here at La Tour Bakehouse, we make a consistent effort to develop and produce healthy items such as granola, or, the topic of today’s post, Puffs. To produce our Puffs, we start out with whole grain cereal base of corn meal and brown rice. Then, we stick this combo into a special machine that “puffs” the base into round, crunchy balls. After we add spices and various toppings, these goodies are as delicious as they are healthy. That’s right, this snack food is light, oil-free, and tasty.

We offer three main flavors. The Whole Grain Puffs are sweet but not too sweet, the Furikake Puffs are a perfect balance of sweet and salty, and the Savory Puffs combine cheese and chili pepper. They’re a perfect snack for any occasion at any time – in the middle of a workday rush or during a late-night showing of your favorite movie.

It’s the snack that not only tastes good, but also feels good. Get your crunch on now and every Wednesday from 4pm to 7pm at the Blaisdell Center market and from 3pm to 8pm at the Windward Mall market.

Macarons: Mini Masterpieces

Today, it seems appropriate to introduce the delightful concoction known as the macaron, both because we’ve received questions about the picture heading our blog and because we’ve been doing a lot of macaron tastings at the bakery lately.

Yes, the “sweet hamburgers” greeting you from the top of our page are a French invention called the macaron (not to be confused with the macaroOn, a similar yet completely different dessert). A macaron can best be described as a sandwich consisting of a cream or fruit jelly encased in two almond-flavored meringue cookies. Contrary to what I just said, that description is far from being the best and doesn’t quite do these sinful sandwiches justice, so please check out the greatest resource known to man for more information – Wikipedia.

Our in-house pastry mastermind Rodney Weddle recently started rolling out delicious macarons for La Tour Bakehouse. So far, our flavors include chocolate, strawberry, green tea (the three that you see in our header), coffee, mango, vanilla, passion, and coconut. However, we are far from satisfied with this assortment, so we are constantly trying out new flavors and combinations. Yesterday, we tasted guava. Today,  we tasted plain peanut butter, peanut butter and jelly, and peanut butter and chocolate. Imagine biting into this delicate dessert and feeling the initial soft crack of the meringue cookies. Immediately and simultaneously, the cookies melt in your mouth, the indulgent combination of peanut butter/peanut butter and jelly/ peanut butter and chocolate floods your senses, and your teeth hit a chewy center.  The complete experience is contradictory – crunchy and silky, fleeting and time-stopping. If you haven’t figured it out by now, Chef Rodney is THE man.  And if you haven’t tried these sweet sandwiches yet, get your hands on them ASAP.

Right now, we know you’re frantically looking for your car keys and wondering WHERE, WHERE, WHERE can I find such treasures? Luckily for you, we sell them Tuesdays and Fridays from 7am to 2pm at the Fort Street Mall market and Saturdays from 7am to 11am at the KCC market. Try them out and tell us what you think. We’re betting you will enjoy them as much as we do. Oh, by the way, if you thought they couldn’t get any better, think again – we’re exploring Nutella macarons next.

The Last First Post

Looks like it’s just another day at the bakery. The delicious smell of baked goods permeates the office and makes it that much more difficult to concentrate. Our pastry chef Rodney Weddle is overseeing our employees who are pounding out pizza dough, shaping breads, decorating cakes, cooling brownies, and packaging macarons. The bakery is a nonstop whirl of organized chaos. Literally nonstop since it’s open and operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Everyone is excited and ready to move into the newer, shinier, and much bigger baking facility on North Nimitz Highway. There, the entire bakery will fit on one level and feature new appliances and gadgets. Just as importantly, we’ll all have our own expansive offices with fancy, official looking desks and comfy swivel seats. Unfortunately, construction is taking longer than expected so the move-in date has been postponed for a few months. The delay is forcing us to practice patience, but hey, anything worth having is worth waiting for, right? In the meantime, check out some of our mouth-watering goods today and every Thursday from 5pm to 7:30pm at the Kailua market. If that’s not enough of a distraction, please “like” our Facebook page and follow our tweets