The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

New bread baker looking for a good recipe book.

Karmel_Kuisine's picture

New bread baker looking for a good recipe book.

Hi, I just started making my own bread a couple of months ago.

At this point, I am mostly looking to do sandwich breads for toast, using as many whole grain recipes as possible.

I've had trouble finding good recipes, though. I started baking bread out of the King Arthur Flour Bakers Companion, but I would like more recipes than it has. I check most of my books from the library and I've just had difficulty finding that perfect mix of recipes. Any suggestions? I'm something of a cookbook freak, so load me up with titles, if you have them. Thanks.

rockfish42's picture

You might try finding any of these

Peter Reinhart - Whole Grains, has several breads that would make good toast
King Arthur Flour - WHole Grain Baking Cookbook, contains recipes other than just bread
The Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book, classic and might be more up your alley than the other two as the daily bread recipes are less involved in my opinion.


Caltrain's picture

If it's whole grain bread recipes you want, then you're not going to do much better than Laurel's. It's got some good (if, as pointed out, involved) techniques, but above all it's packed to the brim with recipe odds and ends. It seems like every possible combination of ingredients has already been tested and listed somewhere in the book. There's also good info how each ingredient will affect the resulting bread's taste and texture.

Reinhart's WGB, on the other hand, contains relatively few recipes, but it's certainly worth a look.

Syvwlch's picture

I'm no expert on bread books, but I've been very happy with The Bread Bible, by Rose Levy Beranbaum of Cake Bible fame. She goes over tools, techniques, ingredients, and covers a wide variety of bread types, with lots of recipes. I learned a lot from it and have not out-grown it yet.

bigfrank's picture

The bread Bible ,Paul Reinharts Bread baking Apprentice,Crust and Crumb,Brother junipers .Artisan Bread in 5 mins aday.I have used all and Revel in the results as do my coworkers.Myself I found a good base recipe and tinker with hydration ,retardation,and ingredients usually pretty good results.

jstreed1476's picture

The Bread Bible by Beranbaum helped me get started on the right track, I think. I just worked the "Basic Hearth" and Sandwich Loaf recipes over and over for a month or so until I got the hang of handling pre-ferments and such. Her pugliese is my staple bread now.

It helped to read the introductory sections, btw. Instead of dry theory, it turned out to be the key to understanding the steps involved in the recipes that follow.

And even though a lot of her recipes--and those in many other books, too--seem to require a stand mixer, I've been totally satisfied lately in turning them into 100% handmade breads using the methods described in the "Eye-opening techniques" thread.

One caveat, though: she's not big on whole-grain breads. There are many in the book that include whole grains, just not as a majority ingredient. BUT, I've had some success adapting them to higher-proportion recipes.

Happy baking!

Karmel_Kuisine's picture

Thanks everyone for your wonderful suggestions. I appreciate it so much and put these on my library list!

KAF bakers's picture
KAF bakers

Have you checked out the recipes on the King Arthur flour web site?

mrfrost's picture

I agree. Such great, consistent and proven recipes. Along with a wealth of information and graphics which are so helpful, especially for one new to baking.

The blogs there are equally great.