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Yeremey Grishin
Yeremey Grishin

The Ultimate Guide to Bread Making: The Bread Baker's Apprentice, 15th Anniversary Edition



The Bread Baker's Apprentice, 15th Anniversary Edition: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread




If you love bread and want to learn how to make it at home, you need to get your hands on The Bread Baker's Apprentice, 15th Anniversary Edition: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread. This is a book by Peter Reinhart, one of the most respected authorities on bread making in America. He is also a co-founder of Brother Juniper's Bakery, an author of ten other bread books, and an instructor at Johnson & Wales University.




The Bread Baker's Apprentice, 15th Anniversary Edition: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread dow



This book is not just a collection of recipes. It is a comprehensive guide that teaches you everything you need to know about bread making, from the basics to the advanced techniques. You will learn how to create artisanal breads that rival those from the best bakeries in the world. You will also discover how to use different flours, grains, starters, and methods to achieve different textures, flavors, and shapes.


In this article, I will give you an overview of what this book has to offer and why it is a must-have for any bread lover or baker. I will also highlight some of the features and benefits that make this book stand out from other bread books. Let's get started!


The Twelve Stages of Bread Making




One of the things that makes this book so valuable is that it explains and illustrates the twelve stages of bread making in detail. These are:


  • Mise en place (preparing ingredients and equipment)



  • Mixing (combining ingredients into a dough)



  • Fermentation (letting the dough rise)



  • Punching down (degassing the dough)



  • Dividing (cutting the dough into portions)



  • Pre-shaping (forming basic shapes)



  • Bench rest (letting the dough relax)



  • Shaping (forming final shapes)



  • Proofing (letting the dough rise again)



  • Baking (cooking the dough in the oven)



  • Cooling (letting the bread cool down)



  • Storing (keeping the bread fresh)



These stages are essential for creating high-quality breads that have good structure, texture, flavor, and appearance. The book shows you how to perform each stage with clear instructions and more than 100 step-by-step photos. You will also learn how to adjust each stage according to different factors, such as temperature, humidity, altitude, and ingredients.


The book also gives you tips and tricks for each stage, such as how to knead the dough by hand or by machine, how to test the dough for gluten development, how to shape different types of breads, how to score the loaves for optimal oven spring, and how to store the breads for maximum freshness.


The Master Formulas




Another thing that makes this book so valuable is that it provides you with 50 master formulas for making different types of breads. These are not just recipes, but templates that you can use to create your own variations and adaptations. The book covers a wide range of breads, such as:


  • Pizza dough



  • Challah



  • Bagels



  • Sourdough



  • Rye bread



  • French bread



  • Italian bread



  • Whole wheat bread



  • Multigrain bread



  • Brioche



  • Croissants



  • Panettone



  • And many more!



The book also provides you with comprehensive baker's percentages for each formula, which allow you to scale the recipes up or down according to your needs. You will also learn how to use different pre-ferments, such as poolish, biga, pâte fermentée, and sourdough starter, to enhance the flavor and texture of your breads.


The book also gives you variations and adaptations for each formula, such as how to add nuts, seeds, fruits, cheese, herbs, spices, or other ingredients to your breads. You will also learn how to modify the formulas for different baking methods, such as using a baking stone, a Dutch oven, a steam injection oven, or a wood-fired oven.


The Bread Breakthroughs




A third thing that makes this book so valuable is that it shares some of the bread breakthroughs that the author learned from his study in France's famed boulangeries and his teaching experience at the culinary college. These are techniques and methods that improve the quality and flavor of the breads beyond the conventional wisdom. Some of these breakthroughs are:


  • Pain à l'ancienne: This is a method of making baguettes and other French breads by using ice-cold water and minimal mixing. This results in a dough that has a long fermentation time and develops complex flavors without the need for a pre-ferment.



  • Pain de campagne: This is a rustic country bread that uses a combination of white flour, whole wheat flour, and rye flour. It also uses a pâte fermentée as a pre-ferment and a small amount of commercial yeast. This results in a bread that has a rich flavor and a chewy crust.



  • Ciabatta: This is an Italian slipper bread that has a very wet dough and a long fermentation time. It also uses a biga as a pre-ferment and a small amount of commercial yeast. This results in a bread that has large holes and a crisp crust.



  • Sourdough: This is a type of bread that uses a natural leavening agent made from flour and water. It also uses a long fermentation time and minimal mixing. This results in a bread that has a tangy flavor and a chewy texture.



The book explains how these breakthroughs work and why they make such a difference in the final product. You will also learn how to apply these techniques to other types of breads and create your own variations.


The Updated Edition




A fourth thing that makes this book so valuable is that it is an updated edition of the original bestseller that was published in 2001. The author has made several changes and additions to make the book more user-friendly and comprehensive. Some of these changes are:


  • He has added metrics and temperature conversion charts for international readers.



  • He has updated some of the formulas and techniques based on his latest research and experiments.



  • He has added three new formulas: sprouted wheat and brown rice bread, porridge bread, and sprouted wheat berry bread.



to make them more current and relevant.


These changes make the book more accessible and useful for both beginners and experienced bakers. You will also find more information and resources on the book's website, such as videos, articles, blogs, and forums.


Conclusion




The Bread Baker's Apprentice, 15th Anniversary Edition: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread is a book that every bread lover and baker should own. It is not just a cookbook, but a masterclass that teaches you how to make amazing breads at home. You will learn the science, the art, and the craft of bread making from one of the most respected experts in the field.


You will also get 50 master formulas for making different types of breads, from pizza dough to croissants. You will also discover how to use different pre-ferments, grains, starters, and methods to create different flavors and textures. You will also learn some of the bread breakthroughs that will take your breads to the next level.


This book is an updated edition of the original bestseller that was published in 2001. It has been revised and improved to make it more user-friendly and comprehensive. It also has three new formulas and more photos and illustrations.


If you want to master the art of extraordinary bread, you need this book. You can buy it from Amazon or from the book's website. You will not regret it!


FAQs




Here are some common questions and answers about the book or bread making in general:


  • Q: How long does it take to make bread using this book?



  • A: It depends on the type of bread and the method you use. Some breads can be made in a few hours, while others require overnight fermentation or multiple days. The book gives you an estimated time for each formula, as well as tips on how to speed up or slow down the process.



  • Q: Do I need any special equipment or ingredients to make bread using this book?



  • A: You don't need any special equipment or ingredients to make bread using this book. However, some tools and ingredients can enhance your bread making experience and results. For example, a digital scale, a thermometer, a baking stone, a lame, a banneton, and a couche can help you measure, shape, score, and bake your breads more accurately and efficiently. Likewise, using high-quality flours, grains, starters, yeast, salt, and water can improve the flavor and texture of your breads.



  • Q: Can I use this book to make gluten-free bread?



  • A: This book is not designed for making gluten-free bread. All of the formulas use wheat or other gluten-containing grains. However, you can use some of the techniques and principles from this book to make gluten-free bread using other recipes or books that are specifically for gluten-free baking.



  • Q: How do I store and freeze my bread?



  • A: The best way to store your bread is to keep it at room temperature in a paper bag or wrapped in a cloth. This will prevent it from drying out or getting moldy. You can also freeze your bread for longer storage. To do this, wrap your bread tightly in plastic wrap and then in aluminum foil. Label it with the date and type of bread. To thaw it, remove it from the freezer and let it come to room temperature before unwrapping it.



  • Q: How do I reheat my bread?



  • A: The best way to reheat your bread is to bake it in a preheated oven at 350F (177C) for about 10 minutes. This will restore its crispness and freshness. You can also toast your bread in a toaster or on a skillet over medium heat.



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