Top positive review
59 people found this helpful
Complete and detailed, with a marvelous recipe selection
on 30 January 2002
The detail in this book is wonderful, providing absolutely everything you'd want to know about baking bread.
Beginning sections break down each ingredient and the role it plays in breadmaking, baking and loaf shaping techniques, and advice on flours, yeasts and fats. It then discusses the different types of bread you can bake, what distiguishes them and how to achieve the best results. The section on how to create your own starters is fabulous!
What I love about this book is that it assumes you are coming to breadmaking as an absolute beginner and as such, leaves no detail unexplained - yet the tone is intelligent and thorough, with no hint of talking down to the reader. I've been baking my own bread for the past 15 years and found so much of the info interesting and enlightening (especially the 'troubleshooting'section explaining typical problems and how to fix them). Breadmaking is an art and a skill - there are as many techniques as there are bakers, and one never stops learning.
But the best part of the book (besides the ample colour photos) are the wonderful, detailed recipes. Included are recipes both basic and extravagant for Italian, French, British, American, Middle Eastern and other world speciality breads; as well as quick breads, holiday breads, and even recipes for leftover bread. There are authentic recipes for ciabatta, pain ordinaire and San Francisco sourdough, as well as bagels, pita, schiacciata, baps, bloomers, lavosh, challah, grissini.....
A perfect book for the beginner, a wonderful resource for the experienced baker.