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personally, i could not tell you the actual reason why a batard is called so - however, a smaller version of the bagette is not the batard, but called a ficelle, - a batard is more like a very squat football with a flat top and bottom.

But like i said, i couldnt really tell you why a batard is so, but i will endeavour to find out.
 

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im just going off memories of a job that i had about 13 years ago - the batard that this particular establishment had used your standard french bread recipe. Along with these loaves, there were others using the white french bread recipe, i.e. Epis, rognons, etc. However, i do believe that there are "batards" made from wholemeal and possibly rye breads.

With reference to ciabatta, i think, that the batards are lighter in texture to ciabatta, due to the lighter crust of the batard - but i can check.

[This message has been edited by Nick.Shu (edited 12-18-2000).]
 

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going on what i remember, there was base french bread recipe made for production and pretty much all off the bread was made from this one base - my assumption, and i shall say that until i confirm this, is that: yes batard would refer to the shape rather than any other production technique.

Unfortunately, my main reference is closed until feb, but i can check other sources and i will try to get back to you.
 
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