Friday, June 14, 2024

A weekly notebook about food during the Covid-19 shutdown. Remember, if you’re dining out, doing takeout or getting delivery, the people serving up the food are part of the front line; keep it in mind when tipping.

Takeout treat: Flour Bakery & Cafe


Flour’s mile-high lemon meringue pie. (Photo: Flour via Facebook)

All locations are now open at this local bakery chain run by the affable Joanne Chang. During the shutdown, my wife and daughter have had a blast trying to emulate Chang via her videocasts, which have aspiring bakers buy kits via drop-off or pickup and follow along; Chang makes it look easy when it’s not, but she’s thorough and encouraging. On the pickups, I score a sandwich to top it all off, and not just any sandwich: the applewood smoked bacon, arugula and tomato on focaccia toast. The bacon is crisp and lean, the tomatoes juicy and the arugula adds a necessary bite. But I don’t stop there. I add roasted chicken (never dry) and smashed avocado/guac. The focaccia is notable, because the Italian bread has a tendency to dominate, but here is a thin background player that doesn’t detract from the medley of flavors. This concoction ain’t cheap, but it’s well worth the splurge now and then – like other gems by Chang that will fill your soul from the inside out,  namely chocolate and coconut cream pies. I not a big dessert person, but serve either of these two and I jump in, fork in hand. Her menu also has a mile-high lemon meringue that’s on my radar, also not cheap, but you can taste every penny in every bite. Key lime is my other pie addiction. Perhaps that will come to the menu too.

Flour Bakery & Cafe (Two in Cambridge: 114 Mount Auburn St., Harvard Square, or 40 Erie St., Cambridgeport)