Bakers and Baking

Humanity has been making and eating bread – at first unleavened and then later leavened with a variety of yeasts – for thousands of years. It was about 10,000 years ago that man began to domesticate the cereal grains that would become bread.

This collection of exclusive GoodFood World articles introduces you to bakers – large operations and small – and bread baking.

Wonder Bread or Wonderful Bread?

Chances are your family’s daily bread is just another item on your list when you shop at your favorite supermarket. Let’s take a closer look at what you’re bringing home; your bread may be “in disguise.” It’s pretty clear that fluffy loaves of mass-produced soft, damp, nutritionally deficient, chemical-laced bread made in large industrial “bread factories” and sold in tightly sealed plastic bags contain additives and preservatives to make them easy to process and to give them a long shelf life. But what about the rest of those loaves lined up just asking to be dropped into your shopping cart?
Read more: Wonder Bread or Wonderful Bread?

The Business of Bread and Baking: Kneading Conference West

Whether it’s the urge to start a small bakery to sell a better loaf to the community or just a wish to make and eat a better loaf of bread than that available at the grocery store, the poor quality and poor nutritional state of our daily bread sends hundreds to gatherings like the Kneading Conference West to learn more.
Read more: The Business of Bread and Baking: Kneading Conference West

The Mad Baker in the Bread Lab

Walk past any college laboratory and you could probably identify the subject at hand by the smell. The chemistry lab reeks of chlorine and sulfur, the biology lab sends off whiffs of formaldehyde, and even the botany lab smells earthy, fruity, and sometimes sweet. But never have such wonderful odors come from a lab until you pass something called the Bread Lab!
Read more: The Mad Baker in the Bread Lab

Dishing on Pollan's Cooked

I am a novice baker trying my darnedest to learn how to make good bread. I would rather have bought a book by Michael Pollan called Baked. In his book, Cooked Michael talks about his time with guru bakers, farmers, and millers. He reminds us that to make good bread you only need a few basics: flour, water, salt, yeast, time, and heat. Here’s our take on local and regional grain and flour, and baking bread.
Read more: Dishing on Pollan’s Cooked

Local Grains: Taking Back Our Wheat

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Our “National Hymn,” America the Beautiful, opens with the image of endless skies over fields of ripe golden grain that reach to purple mountains on the horizon. Poet Katharine Lee Bates would probably be appalled to realize that she was eulogizing one of the worst examples of mono-cropping in existence – second only to the carpeting of Iowa with corn.
Read more: Local Grains: Taking Back Our Wheat

When Did Our Daily Bread Take a Wrong Turn?

Grains

Bread went from being a major part of our ancestors’ food intake to being a very small part of the food we eat today. Heavy, rich, and nutritious bread was once a daily staple; today commercial “industrialized” bread is produced in fully automated factories and is full of chemical additives and preservatives, too much salt, and has too little nutritive value. What went wrong?
Read more: When Did Our Daily Bread Take a Wrong Turn?

Essential Baking - Seattle’s Biggest Small Bakery

Essential Baking Bread

When he was a child, George DePasquale’s quintessential (and large!) Italian-American family gathered every weekend to make food for the coming week – for the whole family. Fresh pasta hung drying over the backs of the sofa and chairs and lay curled on the beds, pots of sauces simmered on the stove, and piles of fresh fish were cleaned and frozen. And Mama always baked bread for the family. It was the homemade bread and exposure to the bakery down the street that made those years so important to George. He literally grew up with “flour in his hair;” baking bread all his life.
Read more: Essential Baking – Seattle’s Biggest Small Bakery

Let them eat bread!

Tall Grass Bakery

Amanda Irving and René Featherstone are an unlikely partnership and yet it takes both – the farmer and the baker – to turn an ancient grain like spelt into delicious bread. American consumers have strayed a long way from real food and real bread. René and Amanda are on the path that farmers and bakers have followed for millennia: growing good grain and making good bread. Long may that partnership last!
Read more: Let them eat bread!