New to 'The Fresh Loaf'
I'm new to this website and was glad to find it! What a wealth of information! Found it by following Peter Rheinhart's blog and he mentioned the website recently. Also, was intrigued that the website is based in Portland, Oregon, which is where I live. I snapped up Peter's book recently, The Bread Baker's Apprentice, with hardly a glance inside. I knew just by the title that it was a book I needed to read.
I'm in the process of reinventing myself. I am learning the art of making bread and I plan to open a bakery in the Portland, Oregon area. I say reinventing because I have no experience working in a bakery and minimal experience in my own kithchen. I'm following my heart, and that feels right. I know there's is much to learn and detailed plans to make. Even though it may be a few years before the bakery idea comes to fruition, I just feel so excited that I've begun the process.
My goal right now is to practice making bread and learn as much as possible. I'm looking into culinary programs that focus on artisan breads and pastries and I might go this route. What I really want, though, is to be mentored in the art of baking. I want to learn by doing. The diploma doesn't matter to me, unless it is a means to an end. I'm hoping to meet folks who are bakers and who own bakeries with the goal of finding a place where I can start to learn by apprenticeship.
If any of you in the Portland area have any suggestions about who I could talk with, network with, learn from, please let me know! I want to learn! I'm also interested if, in your opinion, it is necessary to have a diploma from a culinary arts program to succeed in the field.