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In the dough

Did you ever imagined flying off to Paris and visiting its two hundred and fifty bread shops? If you did, it's time to pull out the dough recipes and learn about the art of bread making.

Gems of gluten-free baking : breads and irresistible treats everyone can enjoy
Wendy Turnbull.
North Vancouver, BC : Whitecap, 2010.
Those who suffer from a gluten intolerance often miss out on the delicious baked goods most people get to enjoy. In her first book, Gems of Gluten-Free Baking, former nurse and baker Wendy Turnbull unlocks the secret to baking all your favourite treats while still keeping a gluten-free diet-by using a carefully selected and balanced blend she calls GEMS Flour, a formula she reveals in this book. This blend of whole grain gluten-free flours holds many of the same properties as found in wheat flour. Breads are tasty, have a great texture, slice wihtout crumbling, and stay remarkably fresh. By using GEMS Flour in her recipes, Wendy has transformed gluten-free baking into an endless array of possiblitities. From quick breads and muffins, to cookies, bars, cakes, and pies, Gems of Gluten-Free Baking guarantees that those with a gluten intolerance will never long for their favourite baked goods again. With instructions to create your own GEMS Flour as well as tested, easy-to-follow recipes, this book is the must-have guide for anyone who wants to still enjoy baking and keeping gluten free.
     
My sweet Mexico : recipes for authentic breads, pastries, candies, beverages, and frozen treats
Fany Gerson.
Berkeley, CA : Ten Speed Press, 2010.
After years spent traveling and sampling sweets throughout her native Mexico, celebrated pastry chef Fany Gerson shares the secrets behind her beloved homeland#x19;s signature desserts in this highly personal and authoritative cookbook. Skillfully weaving together the rich histories that inform the country#x19;s diverse culinary traditions,My Sweet Mexicois a delicious journey into the soul of the cuisine.
 
From yeasted breads that scent the air with cinnamon, anise, sugar, fruit, and honey, to pushcarts that brighten plazas with paletas and ice creams made from watermelon, mango, and avocado, Mexican confections are like no other.
 
Stalwarts like Churros, Amaranth Alegr#xED;as, and Garibaldis-a type of buttery muffin with apricot jam and sprinkles-as well as Passion Fruit#x13;Mezcal Trifle and Cheesecake with Tamarind Sauce demonstrate the layering of flavors unique to the world of dulces. In her typical warm and enthusiastic style, Gerson explains the significance of indigenous ingredients such as sweet maguey plants, mesquite, honeys, fruits, and cacao, and the happy results that occur when combined with Spanish troves of cinnamon, wheat, fresh cow#x19;s milk, nuts, and sugar cane.
 
In chapters devoted to breads and pastries, candies and confections, frozen treats, beverages, and contemporary desserts, Fany places cherished recipes in context and stays true to the roots that shaped each treat, while ensuring they#x19;ll yield successful results in your kitchen. With its blend of beloved standards from across Mexico and inventive, flavor-forward new twists,My Sweet Mexicois the only guide you need to explore the delightful universe of Mexican treats.
     
Artisan breads : at home with the Culinary Institute of America
Eric Kastel, Cathy Charles.
Hoboken, N.J. : John Wiley & Sons, c2010.
An illustrated guide for anyone who wants to master the art of baking delicious artisan breads at homeThis addition to The Culinary Institute of America's "At Home" series is perfect for home bakers who want to go beyond the basics to create delicious artisan breads. Backed by the CIA's expertise, Eric Kastel leads readers through simple and challenging recipes from Baguettes, Peasant Bread, and Ciabatta to Cheddar Onion Rye Rolls, Coffee, Cake, and even Sourdough.In addition, Artisan Breads at Home provides thorough explanations of ingredients-including flour breakdowns and chemical reactions-easy-to-understand terminology and definitions, and a detailed equipment guide. Includes tips, troubleshooting answers, and nearly170 full-color photos of techniques and finished breads Covers the basics of bread making as well as advanced techniques-from lean dough breads and rolls to flat breads and enriched doughs Author Eric Kastel, CMB, CHE is an associate professor of baking and pastry arts at The CIA and a former head baker for Whole Foods and Bread AloneArtisan Breads at Home is the ideal resource for home bakers who want to take their baking to the next level of complexity and taste.
     
Baking : breads, muffins, cakes, pies, tarts, cookies and bars
Martha Day.
London : Lorenz Books 2009.
This compendium offers an irresistible spread of recipes for baked goods. A comprehensive introduction covers all the ingredients, equipment and skills you will need, including how to line tins, bake blind, or make a lattice top for a pie.
     

Bakers each have their own techniques and recipes for making the best bread. Baker Peter Reinhart (also known as Brother Juniper) leaves the shaped loaves in the refrigerator overnight for their final slow-rise fermentation.

Reinhart and other bakers experiment with many distinctive types of breads:

  • French baguette - long & thin loaves, crackly crust
  • Levain - whole-grain, round loaves -- leavened, not yeasted
  • Ciabatta - sticky dough, floury crusts
  • Pumpernickel - rye flours often mixed with seeds and seasonings
  • White - yeasted soft dough baked at lower temperatures than other breads
  • Brioche - rich with the addition of butter and eggs
  • Flatbreads - savory or sweet -- pizza, focaccia, tortillas
  • Quick - often leavened by buttermilk and baking soda -- banana, pumpkin, chocolate

Sliced bread

Sliced bread has a Missouri connection. 

Otto Frederick Rohwedder, considered the father of sliced bread, worked for many years to develop a bread slicer. By 1928, Rohwedder, working with a company in Chillicothe Missouri, designed a slicer that also wrapped the bread.

What makes the bread the best it can be?  A bread baker wants the inside and outside, the crumb and the crust, perfectly matched. The flavor and texture of the crumb should feel cool and creamy, even while still warm from the oven.

Ovens can play a role in the bread's crust and crumb.  However, the real difference between good and great bread is the dough technique--ingredients used, mixing, rising, and shaping.

Baking bread is a passion. Both novice and expert bakers can savor the pleasures of making and eating good bread.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff