“Anytime a person walks into a delicatessen and orders a pastrami on white bread another jew dies”  Milton Berle..

What I have been learning and experimenting with lately is how to get lightness and large holes in breads.  Every book I read is a different story.    Right now that is my preference in bread but as I have learned, my preference will again change as soon as I have a new challenge right?    There is a man named Chad Robertson who started Tartine Bakery in San Francisco.. He developed this technique of stretching and folding the dough over a period of 5 hours or so to help develop the gases which when baked turn out to be holes…  When I tasted his bread 3 years ago, yes it was a revelation because he not only got the “holiness,” he got the crust too with this extraordinary bronzed burnished look.  The bread is saying: “You know I am the greatest thing you will taste today” and it was true..  The deal is the Italians and the French and the Germans have been creating extraordinary breads forever and this surfer dude (chad robertson) is the one here on the West Coast (san francisco to be exact) who is one of a few great bakers to try and capture what it is we love about the European breads.  It turns out it  is the long fermentation,  the high quality mix of several flours, the way the dough is mixed and the kind of vessels we use in which to bake the bread    In the East coast you have Dan Leader of Bread Alone bakery and Amy Scherber of Amys Bread and  Jim Sullivan of Sullivan Street Bakery in Soho.   What Chad  has done now is create another book where he  uses ancient grains like Einkhorn,  Kamut, Teff, Spelt ,Amaranth, Chia,Farro, and sorghum to create fabulous tasting bread.

I would like to acknowledge some of my favorite baking teachers that have kept me running home to “watch the dough” and see what is happening with it..

1)Tassajara bread book:  long ago I  tasted the bread the monks made at  Tassajara Monastary and made my first loaves from the Tassajara bread book.. I will never forget the sweet and  whole grain flavors of those breads.

2) Beard on Bread:  this classic by James Beard (1974) introduced me to  the incredible  variety of breads there were to bake.. Breads I had never heard of like Graham bread, Walnut Bread, Cracked Wheat Bread, Italian Feather Bread, Potatoe Pumpernickle to list just a few..

3)Sunset magazine breads:  This magazine held my hand  thru the steps of making bread in a very clear and concrete way

………and then we fast forward to the slow fermented breads of the past few years using home made sourdough;;

4) Local Breads by Dan Leader.. He showed me the breads of Italy, France and Germany and got me excited about why it is important to preserve those ancient flavors….  In france it might be the Auvergne Dark Rye,, In Italy: it could be the corn-rye rounds; where corn and rye grains grow well in the Dolomites, northwest of Venice as you get into the foothills of the Alps.. or it might be In Germany; a bread called Dreikornbrot which is made with flax, sesame and sunflower..

5)Secrets of a Jewish Baker by George Greenstein.  This guy was the first to introduce me to Altus ( a mash made of slicing and trimming the crusts from leftover sour rye bread) Altus intensifies the distinctive flavor of pumpernickle and rye bread helping them to retain moisture.. also he taught me with very good pictures how to make the different shapes of bread like torpedo, batard, baguette or round..

6)How to make bread by Emmanuel Hadjiandreou:  this guy taught me the best formula for sourdough.. 1 tablespoon starter, 2/3 cup water and 1 cup flour..   It works the best for so many breads.. and last but not least

7)Bread for all Seasons by Beth Hensperger..   She has breads taking you thru the 4 seasons with great explanations of breads served in Mexico, Greece, Sweden and other scandinavian countries..

so I have learned a little from a lot of people which adds up to all the breads that you all have been eating.

so yes I am going on thru the winter to spring months January  thru march 2015 $30 subscriptions due. 2 breads each month for 3 months..

Mail to: anina marcus 95 corona way, carmel california 93923  Thanks  for staying on the journey with me.. keep in touch, laugh often  and eat good bread.   image of bread man

**I might end up looking like this guy if I keep up the way I am going…


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