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on 25 November 2013
Yay! Pre-ordered copy of Tartine Book 3 arrived this morning. Wait! What's all this?

I preface my comments by saying I am a HUGE fan of Chad Robertson and the Tartine Bakery; one of my colleagues has been lucky enough to spend time with him at the bakery and returned with glowing reports of him and his bread, so fabulous in person as well as in print. I loved his first two books Tartine Bread and Tartine: Sweet and Savory Pastries, Tarts, Pies, Cakes, Croissants, Cookies and Confections and have baked from them extensively as have many of my colleagues and customers (I work at Shipton Mill in UK - We mill a range of organic & stoneground flour).

My first impressions of this latest volume however, are of fabulous breads that are much less accessible to the average home-baker, in the UK at least. In addition to the chapter on Basic Breads it contains chapters on:

* Master Method for Tartine Loaves (utilisiing a sequence of Starter, Leaven, Dough Premix, Autolyse and Final mix).
* Ancient Grain Breads (using Kamut, Emmer, Einkorn and Spelt flours)
* Seeded Breads (with all manner of seeds including Sunflower, Flaxseed, Sesame, Poppy, Caraway)
* Hearth Loaves with Sprouted Grains: (using Sprouted Einkorn, Purple Barley, Quinoa, Kamut, Rye, Spelt, Amaranth, and Emmer berries and Buckwheat groats for you to sprout yourself)
* Rene's Style Pan Loaves: (again using sprouted grains but in a higher percentage with lower percentage of flour including sprouted Rye, Barley, Purple Barley, Amazake (a preparation of Japanese rice grain) and Buckwheat groats plus the harder to find Einkorn flour)
* Porridge, Cracked and Flaked Grain Breads (including Master Methods for Porridge Breads & Cracked and Flaked Grain Breads, with fermented starters made from Rye, Kamut, Farro, Oats, Barley, Corn, Brown Rice, Koji Rice and Millet grains and berries)
* Crispbreads
* Pastries

The recipe chapters are interspersed with featured sections on the breads of Denmark, Sweden, Germany & Austria, France and Mexico chronicling Chad's journeys through bread.

The recipes all look amazing and I am sure taste equally fabulous if his first two books are anything to go by. But, and it's a big but, many of the ingredients are going to be hard to source by British home bakers, just take a look at the list below and ask yourself where you are going to source whole berries of these grains as well as some of the rarer flours. As always the intrepid adventurous bakers will go all out to do so and I anticipate an influx of enquiries here at the Mill asking if we do these ingredients. Whilst we offer an extensive range (42 different flours) to the home baker there are many of these ingredients which are not available in domestic quantities. Some flours are available, not just (for the sake of impartiality) from us, but other UK mills as well, such as Rye, Spelt, Buckwheat, Emmer Flour and Khorason (Kamut by another name), some such as Quinoa will shortly be available when we open our new gluten free mill however the majority are not and whole berries are only sometimes available by special order by the 25kg sack. Even more interesting is a comment in the introduction which notes at The Tartine Bakery they go one step further than an organic ethos in using Biodynamic flours which whilst milled from the purest and most sustainable grain imaginable is even more limiting and difficult to source if aspiring to the true Tartine Loaf. The professional artisan baker with access to a much more extensive range of high volume flours will likely make much greater use of this book, the domestic baker I fear may be disappointed by temptation put their way and no means to realise these fabuloafs.

I do feel the Amazon Book Description could do with a more comprehensive overview from the publisher and a Look Inside facility if readers are not otherwise going to be disappointed at the number of recipes they may find inaccessible. For this reason, and with great disappointment, I can only give this book a three star rating (*See my update for why I later upgraded it). As a fellow baker @thebreadkiln put it, Chad Robertson is a baker ahead of his time; if the description were more comprehensive, if it had a Look Inside so readers can judge for themselves how much of it they can use, and if the ingredients were more readily available it would be receiving a glowing five stars for fabulously creative baking methods, innovative contemporary breads and enticing photography. I have a feeling the grain farmers and millers are going to be scrambling to catch up with the demand created by this ground-breaking new book.

I will as always update these initial first impressions, once I've delved into it and got my hands into the dough! And to offer a ray of hope, I've just emailed my boss with this review and a summary of these hard-to-find ingredients.....watch this space fellow #breadheads!

Update 1:

OK - so overnight research via Google search has enabled me to source all bar four of the ingredients listed below from various online specialist suppliers in the UK; thus I have upgraded my initial star rating to four since it is after all a fabulous book and at least possible to achieve these recipes in the UK. The requirement to source such a large number of specialist ingredients prevents me however from giving it five stars which it otherwise undoubtedly deserves.

Hence, potential buyers beware: 97% of the bread recipes will require an online specialist purchase (see list of specialist ingredients below), with the possible exception of wheatgerm (required for every bread recipe) it is not going to be possible to walk into your local supermarket and buy the ingredients for the majority of these recipes and since there is no single supplier who provides them all it is going to cost in postage to have all these things delivered. Hence this remains a book for the professional with easy access to specialist ingredients or the experienced #breadhead looking to advance their repertoire, who positively enjoys the challenge of seeking out rare ingredients, doesn't mind spending the extra money to source them or has the knowledge to adapt the recipes for what they have available. Those new to slow fermentation breads or wanting more easily acquired ingredients may prefer his first book Tartine Bread which is a great introduction to Chad's style of baking.

Better news is that the Pastry section has far more accessible recipes. Whilst several still require online specialist purchases if you want to be true to the recipe, all bar one of the 42 recipes could easily be adapted to commonly available ingredients. So if you love Tartine for its sweet treats then this is a winner with lots of interesting and contemporary cakes and pastries using flours more commonly used for breads such as rye, buckwheat, Kamut (Khorason by another name) and spelt, all commonly available.

Happy Baking
@Tortepane
Buono come il pane. Like to eat. Love to bake

Specialist Ingredients (in addition to more commonly available flours):

Buckwheat groats
Corn (Medium Fine Cracked)
Corn (Whole Kernels)
Einkorn Berries
Einkorn Flour
Emmer berries
Farro Grains
Kamut Berries
Kamut Flakes
Kamut Flour
Koji rice
Millet grains
Nori
Oat flour
Oat grains
Oat groats
Purple Barley berries
Quinoa (Whole grains)
Rye (Cracked)
Rye (Flaked)
Rye Berries
Rye Bran
Rye Flakes
Spelt Berries
Spelt Flakes
Wheatgerm (in every recipe)
Wheatgerm (Raw)

Of these, the ingredients I have thus far been UNable to source in domestic quantities in UK are Einkorn berries, purple barley berries, Emmer berries (all for sprouting) and medium fine cracked corn. So if anyone has a source for these and fancies adding a comment with the supplier to this review please do!
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on 28 November 2013
I am in complete agreement with @Tortepane's review. Chad Robinson so generously gave us incredible access to producing one of the nicest loaves of bread at home with his first Tartine book which also included some beautiful recipes from the day-old loaf. With Tartine No 3 Chad continues to give us complete access to his new world of bread it's just that he has entered a more exclusive category of bread that most folk will not be able to access due to the limited availability of the grains he uses. Furthermore the parts of the book that include the sprouting of grains and the preparing of porridges I fear is one step too far for the home baker and the end results possibly one step for the consumer. While I spent much time milling over the process of the Country loaf (and so often refer back to it), I fear that book 3 will be relegated to the book shelf only to be taken out on rare occasions when I feel the need to sing the praises of this baking visionary. On the plus side the book is originally and beautifully put together and it does include some pretty original sweet pastry items. If you are wanting to buy into bread baking definitely go for book one.
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on 22 December 2013
I really like this book. Yes, the ingredients are harder to source, but that is a product of a streamlined grocery distribution system that is finally and slowly changing for the better. For now you will have to order many of the grains and flours online, which really isn't all that hard these days (we have ordered small quantities of some very exotic grains online with no problem, it seems like there is already a large market for this in Germany). That said, this book is a great exploration of the potential of different grains and techniques that aren't that common (at least yet), but really allow the character of the grains come to the forefront. Chad is obviously obsessed with real flavor, whether it comes conventionally, traditionally, or via new techniques. He doesn't limit himself much, so some of these recipes are advanced and take time. I'm glad they are in there, otherwise we wouldn't even know about them. I can't wait to start on making more from the book. He also takes time to flesh out his whole story by describing his trips to Europe as well as his thought processes. So, even if you don't make anything from the book, it is still a pleasure to read.
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on 29 July 2014
Read and dream and be inspired, awesome bread. Not a beginners book maybe, depends I guess and perhaps you need to have ability to adapt recipes a little as some ingredients not so easy to find. BUT for sheer inspiration and beautiful photography and book to cherish if you love real bread
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on 25 April 2014
I have Chad,s other books and consider the first one a great book.This one will be of more interest to the tree hugging vegan macro community .It,s a bit like a pop star releaing a record. he has a hit with the first so we all buy the second on the basis it will be the same,and it,s a dissapointment allthough still ok.The third is the make or break release.This only partially does it.An interesting read all the same.
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on 15 March 2015
To be honest, I'm sorry that I bough this book. It is for the bread making zealots. not for me. Don't get me wrong, I like making bread and I have Chad's earlier books and have made many things from them, but this is one step too far with its use of very unusual flours and combinations. I can't say that I would want to make anything in the book. I think that I may well return it, special offer or not.
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on 5 January 2015
If you are an artisan baker, you will love this book. Chad know's his stuff. The book gives loads of information about grains ans using them. Really good buy.
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on 17 February 2014
Lovely book bringing loads of inspiration for new and different types of sourdough bread. And the pictures are both beautiful and theoretical.
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on 18 August 2015
Excellent book by Chad Robertson, of course. I haven't made anything from this book yet, but I had to complete my book collection!
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on 19 April 2016
This is the best bread book I have ever had. quite chefy but love it.
quick serice as always thanks
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