Friday, 1 June 2012

How to make bread

My favourite bread book has just been awarded the Best First Book at the prestigious Guild of Food Writers' annual awards. I think it is well deserved. I think it makes a good introduction to those new to baking bread, starting with some of the basics you need to understand the bread making process, before giving some basic bread recipes. But it then goes beyond a basic bread book with a thrilling range of recipes including a range of yeasted breads (with rye breads well represented, plus seventeen sourdough breads of which I have baked five and am keen to try all the others, as well as a chapter on pastries. of the latter, the croissants and its variations, the brioche and two stollens stand out. It is all beautifully photographed (I hope the photographer is recognised for his outstanding work). Its diversity is its strength. I am very fond of the River Cottage Bread Handbook which, as a novice, I am finding an excellent resource, but whilst there are more in depth comprehensive books such as Hamelman's Bread which are rightly highly commended, I think if you mastered Hadjiandreou's step by step recipes one would be on the way to be a very competent home baker.

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