Like most good things in life, the deliciousness of bread is fleeting. It seems that humans are locked in a continual struggle with the gluten gods to keep bread fresh for as long as possible. Seriously, is there a bigger affront to a sandwich than stale bread?
Fortunately, chef-turned-writer Lindsay D. Mattison recently endeavored to discover the best way to keep our precious loaves moist and supple for as long as possible. And what she learned was that mama’s good old-fashioned breadbox really is best.
Mattison’s experiment involved four different storage options: plastic wrap, the plastic bag the bread came in, a paper bag, and lastly, a bread box. She monitored the unsliced loaves of bread for three days before slicing them in half and assessing them for two more days. When it was all set and done she shared her findings on Taste of Home .
Some of you might be surprised to learn that the paper bag fared the worst. “By day two, it was hard as a rock,” Mattison notes. “By day three, I could barely slice through its crusty exterior to cut it in half for the second half of the testing.”
Though they managed to keep the bread fresher than the paper bag, the plastic bag and plastic wrap methods proved equally disappointing. “The plastic suffocated the crust,” Mattison recalls. “By day three, the bread was still edible, but it was completely soft.
So that brings us to the winner: the breadbox. Mattison observed that “the box creates the perfect humid environment to keep your bread at its peak for three or four days.”
It’s also worth noting that breadboxes are the greenest alternative. Fresher bread and less waste? Yes, please!