The Hungry Ghost

It's getting hot in here.

What is there to say about the Pioneer Valley? The valley has some of the most fertile soil in the country, responsible for producing remarkably delicious potatoes and asparagus. Beautiful in the fall, serene in the winter, the valley is also home to Bill Cosby, Thurston Moore & J. Mascis.

Northampton hid this tiny bakery from me for quite some time. On a friends recommendation we took a walk into town to buy our daily bread. The Hungry Ghost looks like it could have sold bread to King Richard the III in 1483. Ivy vines now completely cover the front of the small building, giving it an age old feel. Stepping inside you can literally feel the heat hit you, it must have been at least 100 degrees inside with each employee glistening. Two wood burning ovens bake the rotating sourdough starter bread selections.

My selection was the semolina fennel seed loaf. The smell alone of this loaf was purely intoxicating. We scurried back home anticipating ripping into this. I can not say that this is the best bread in the world because I have many, many, more loafs to try but, this is best bread I've had in my 28 years of existence here on this planet. Great flavor from the wood oven, slightly liquorice undertones from the fennel seed and a crust I can fully appreciate. The problem I find with most artisan breads is the crust is usually hard as a rock, you have to clamp down and really rip the bread from your mouth to get a bite. The Hungry Ghost has perfected the artisan crust, there is just enough bite for you to appreciate with out dislocating your jaw. We ate half of this loaf as is warm with out butter, and the other half with a bit of good cheese and salami (or your favorite charcuterie).

Another gold star for The Hungry Ghost. The Ghost is ENCOURAGING residents of the Pioneer Valley to grow wheat on their property for the bakery. At one time in history New England was the bread basket of the United States. The plan is to completely bypass middle America, bring down prices, and use only locally grown products.

Why not dig up a 10' x 10' patch of lawn for cause!

NPR has a great segment on this.
Click to listen!

1 comment:

Eat It Brooklyn said...

I loved this bakery when I was living in Northampton. I excitedly watched them renovate the space and once open, I would treat myself often to their delicious loaves. Now I'm back in Brooklyn, but still miss a few of my favorites from the Valley. Nice blog - next time you come to Brooklyn, check out my blog for ideas on where to eat! www.eatbrooklynfood.blogspot.com