Growing up with a father who loved bread, and a mom who was a fabulous baker, it's no wonder I share both of their passions. Learning to bake my own bread was one of the first things I set out to do in my own kitchen. Happily, I discovered I had a knack for turning out delicious sandwich and sweet breads which we enjoy each week. This year, I decided to educate myself on the process of creating sourdough and whole-grain recipes with age-old-bread-making traditions. I borrowed an armful of Artisan bread cookbooks from the library and have been studying up. I'm amazed by not only the process, but the science behind it as well. First up, was the simple baguette which I baked on Sunday.
A baguette is a great place to begin as it doesn't require any liquid levain, or starter. A starter can take up to ten days to create. I must confess my first attempt at cultivating a liquid starter failed miserably and I had to throw it out. Although disappointed, I'm going to start again tomorrow. As for my baguettes, they turned out beautifully.
Crunchy artisan breads are best eaten right away so check back later this week to see what meals we've been enjoying them with.
Local Breads, by Daniel Leader, was my favorite book from the lot I borrowed from the library. Interesting reading and recipes. Definitely will be purchasing a copy to add to my cookbook collection.