Breads around the world

I’m a bread person and make a point to try the local bread(s) wherever I visit. It’s 1 of the reasons I like going to Germany. I remember eating breads on my holidays in China… Bread in China? Yes, it’s possible (though they tend to be a bit sweet). Any Muslim enclave will have breads. I had the best flatbread baked in an old oil drum in Lhasa, Tibet.

I’ve started going through my holiday photos looking for breads I ate. If you have come across some good breads please share. Would be interesting to see breads from around the world.

Breads I had in Songpan, China. Songpan (in northern Sichuan province) has a big Tibetan enclave.

The thickness

Also in Songpan

I think it’s baked in a pot.

And on the pavement where it’s sold.

In northern Greece. In Turkey it’s known as Simit.

I did make photos of the flatbread I enjoyed so much in Lhasa. Will find them on my CDs.


Are these enjoyed solo or are there toppings or spreads? Looks amazing.

The oven bottom muffin (scary cousin of the barmcake). Lancashire, northwest England


No photos, but hands down the best country for bread in my experience is Denmark. (Sorry, France, you’re not it.) The Danes make absolutely stupendous multi-grain, whole-grain, and dark breads… I could go back there and eat nothing but.

Best in Asia is definitely Vietnam (I will give the French credit for introducing bread culture here).


I like bread and butter,
I like toast and jam,
That’s what my baby feeds me,
I’m her loving man.
He likes bread and butter,
He likes toast and jam,
That’s what his baby feeds him,
He’s her loving man.
She don’t cook mashed potatoes,
She don’t cook T-bone steaks,
Don’t feed me peanut butter,
She knows that I can’t take.
He likes bread and butter,
He likes toast and jam,
That’s what his baby feeds him,
He’s her loving man.
The Newbeats

I’m here!


Thing is, I never saw anyone eat bread in public (in China). All the places that sell bread put it in a plastic bag and you take it home. I did have small flatbread (a lot like little pita pockets) filled with grilled lamb at muslim eateries.

Is it specific to the Northwest? If not it probably has a different name elsewhere, which to confuse us all.

Looks light and soft. What’s the texture like? Is it also for roasted pork with scratchings and apple sauce? Photos on the manufacturer’s site suggest these muffins are versatile.

Yes, I’ve heard about Danish breads. Danmark is on my (beer) list. I am especially interested in the dark breads. I prefer Vietnamese baguette. Some rice flour is added to achieve the lightness and sharp crust. Had Banh Mi in Cambodia but it was not so good. Vietnamese Banh Mi blows it out of the water!

@RedJim, bread is our carbs of choice! :punch:


Yes, specific to the northwest and, perhaps, specific to the Lancashire area.

I mentioned the barmcake - our local name for a soft bread roll. This muffin is a much firmer texture and ideal for the hot roast pork, scratching apple sandwich (but, then, what bread isnt good for a roast pork sandwich.

I’ve mentioned regional names for the bread roll on other threads and it is indeed very regional. Here, it’s a barmcake. In the town where I used to work, about 10 miles form home, the same roll is a bap. A bit further south east and it’s become a cob. In the south of my county, Cheshire, it’s become a batch. 'Tis tricky. You go into a sandwich bar to order your breakfast sandwich and don’t know whether to ask for bacom barmcake or a bacon batch. I mean, you don’t want to be thought of as an outsider, do you?


Would you agree with this illustration? (photo borrowed from this site) Notice Yorkshire has 3 different names for the roll?!

From your descriptions I would prefer the oven bottom muffin. This is the one I had in Sheffield. It’s certainly not firm despite the thickness.

With scratching to fight over.

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The very first bread I had in China. Thought it was a hamburger but it wasn’t. Just landed in Peking and immediately boarded another plane going in the reverse direction to Chengdu. We got the last possible 2 seats (separately). They were actually about to close the plane door, got a phone call to wait for us. We walked the entire length of the plane to get to our seats whilst everyone was looking at us so intensely in silence (we found out it was like that til we left China).

Don’t remember what meat it was but it was very dry, as was the bread. Just the bread and meat, nothing else.

This one is still a mystery to me. It was not meat. Ate it on the street in front of the long-distance bus station in Emeishan.

The filling. Probably some kind of taro. The grain-like thing is not rice.

I still remember how good it was. The rig is on a tricycle parked on the side of the busiest main street in Lhasa. I came back several times to eat and to snap some photos each time. Back then I was not such a blatant tourist paparazzi.

The baker

Almost done

Those ingenious Chinese. This looks like an oil drum to me.

She makes 2 kinds, this is the plain one.

This one has scallions and pork mince (so little mince you hardly notice its existence but there’s a faint taste to make you lick your lips). Notice an old tin with holes punctured on 1 end to hold some kind of seasoning.

Quite a bit of Sichuan chilli oil.


It’s more nuanced than the map suggests, at least for the northwest. Even within Greater Manchester, you’ll find barmcake, bap and cob.

As for your Sheffield photo, that looks like the softer barmcake (or whatever they call it there), rather than an oven bottom muffin. The muffin is flatter than the barm.

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That map confuses me. At least, I’ve never heard ‘bridie’ used to refer to a bap or a roll (the terms I hear in East/Central belt of Scotland). I only know of ‘bridie’ as a pasty of sorts.

Worth a mention. Bordeaux-style crown bread. Online, I find more information on how to make one than the history of this bread.

Bought this one in Paris.

More about it in here: [France] In search of best bread and viennoiseries


Another bread in the crown shape, Couronne (or La couronne lyonnaise) from Des Gâteaux et Des Pains (Paris 15e). Made with flour T65 and salt from Noirmoutier. it looked very burnt, crust was quite hard but soft and moist inside. Quite good. Unit price 4€.


Super-long Afghan bread:

Photo credit East Bay Ethnic Eats.

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I usually buy breads here when in Düsseldorf. It’s often busy and you see people look at the window display in awe. Over the years I have bought just about all the breads they have.



Peek through the window.

Pure rye

“Black Forest”

They also have sweet things.


Inside, waiting for my turn to order.

Everybody looks.

My breads are being wrapped.

It’s common to this bag on the street.

Mine. All sourdough and either pure or half rye. No white bread for me.


That’s a lot of bread, You will eat them instantly or freeze them?