David Lebovitz, an American living in France, describes the automated French bread making coin-op machines at his local late-night convenience store, a shop whose clientèle are said to be les célibataires (
But everyone, single or otherwise, has the right to fresh bread, even if they have to suffer the indignity of buying five leaves of lettuce with a plastic packet of dressing and calling it "Salad for One." And when I saw this giant machine, the size of a small truck, right in the store, I had to try it out. You drop in a €1 coin, wait about 60 seconds for the bread to bake, then it cools the bread for another 30 seconds. A touch screen lets you monitor the progress every second of the way. It also lets you know the ingredients&Mdash;but would it kill them to put in a window? I'd love to what's going on in there.
Then it's ready and you slide the door open and pull out your presumably fresh, hot baguette du jour. I won't comment on the taste or texture, but I don't think they're going to put any bakeries out of business soon.
(via Super Punch)