Having bought and consumed the following four 'bread books' lately: 1. How To Make Bread by Emmanuel Hadjiandreou 2. The Handmade Loaf by Dan Lepard 3. Dough by Richard Bertinet 4. & this one Bread Matters. It is my opinion that this book by Andrew Whitley is the best; if you want to understand why we should all at least have a go at making your own bread. It is explains in detail how to make the 'proper' bread that Andrew is championing. For me, the opening 49 pages about the current state of bread in the UK were extremley enlightening; so much so that i would say they were the best 49 pages I've read in any book for quite some time. The remainder of the book covers in detail (far more than the other three books) the process that needs to be followed to make you own breads - of many different types. It is not just a recipe book, its bread culture, science, history and methodology in one great book. I refer back to this book far more than the others. I thought the opening of the book was so good I even gave it to my Mum to read - she was amazed too at the state of what the majority of us perceive to be 'bread'. for what its worth the other three books rank in this order (after Andrews); 2 How To Make Bread by Emmanuel Hadjiandreou. Great layout, great pictures, nice recipes, new and effective (though not efficient for me) methodology. 3. Dough by Richard Bertinet. DVD good for those that learn better by seeing, rather than reading. No sourdough section. He does make things nice and simple and his skill is obvious. 4. The Handmade Loaf by Dan Lepard. Nice but the regional focus did not quite hit the mark for me. That said some really nice recipes, and Dans photos that he took himself adds a very personal element to the book.
But in summary - - - Bread Matters will be my 'bread bible'. I would recommend that anyone interested in bread (not just recipes) should buy it and enjoy being enlightened. Then join the Real Bread Campaign.