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A Book About Bread: A Baker’s Manual

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by Issa Niemeijer-Brown
Regular price $45.00

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This book comes from an Amsterdam bread bakery which hews to French artisanal traditions. Its emphasis is on understanding process and ingredients: the first actual recipe does not appear until page 118 out of 240, and it is preceded by a section entitled “How to use recipes.”

While the recipes are devised for modest home yields (four baguettes, a single boule, a pair of fougasse), baker’s formulas are provided to allow them to be scaled for production quantities. Niemeijer-Brown’s affection is clearly for the classics: there are no innovative flavors or revolutionary flours here, simply careful attention to baguettes (three types), sourdoughs (six variations, including three wholemeal), a rye loaf, pizza and fougasse, pain de mie and pain brié, stollen, brioche, and challah.

Having concentrated on the standards, however, Niemeijer-Brown concludes with the alluringly titled “Making your own choices,” a brief chapters with headings such as “to achieve an open structure and and irregular alveoli,” “to strengthen the crust,” and “to achieve a crumb which stays fresh longer.”

In short, a book for someone interested in returning to fundamentals, or a novice poised to make a serious commitment.

Hardcover. Color photographs throughout. Measurements by weight and in metric

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