The original celebrity chef, Elizabeth David caused no less than a revolution in the Fifties with her 1951 release, French Country Cooking. It's her we have to thank for the end of an era best characterised by boiled gammon and potatoes!
English Bread and Yeast Cookery is no less a benchmark in cookery writing, taking the reader right back to first principals with full information on the workings of yeast, a history of baking, and a slightly disturbing account of commercial bread-baking in the Seventies (the book was first published in 1977, towards the end of a dark era in bought bread, as anyone who was there will remember!).
With its absorbing historical and background content, this 592-page book is a cover-to-cover read - especially for accomplished home bakers.
It gives full 'features and benefits' accounts of different grain, flours and yeast forms, a wonderful range of recipes and techniques (including crumpets, muffins, potato and rice breads), an explanation of loaf types (very useful in the baker's!), plus full information on additives such as sugar, malt, salt and so on.
Essential reading for anyone who's serious about their baking - and equally essential if the whole subject is a mystery. At the end of this book, you will be a guaranteed solid gold expert!