The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Looking for professional artisan bread book

ramat123's picture

Looking for professional artisan bread book

Hi there,

I am baking artisan breads for about two years at home with a great 20 months maintained starter and sell about 10 loaves a week to neighbours and friends at work.

I have gain great knowledge from the forum and the tfh website and now looking for an advanced book on artisan baking.

I am interested in advanced theory (I think I know the baiscs well) and maybe some interesting recipes.

Can you please reccomend me on such a book?

Thank you all,


pmccool's picture

Daniel T. DiMuzio's Bread Baking: An Artisan's Perspective

Jeffrey Hamelman's Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes

Cyril Hitz's Baking Artisan Breads

Michel Suas' Advanced Bread and Pastry

All four gentlemen are highly respected bakers and instructors.  Many TFL posters have purchased one or more of these books and speak positively about them.  Try using the TFL Search tool to get a sense of what people are saying about these books and their authors.


ramat123's picture

As I am using sourdough only and not yeast what so ever is there 1-2 of them that are consentrated on only-sourdough baking? Thanks again, David

davidg618's picture

...but I don't think there are any PROFESSIONAL artisan bread books available devoted to sourdough only.

I find D. DiMuzio's bread baking, An Artisans Prespective the nearest to what you're looking for. I second the list above, with the exception of Hitz' book. Himself a professional baker, and teacher, nonetheless, I think the book was intentionally directed at home bakers.

David G

LindyD's picture

In the Hitz book.  It's a very fine book, though, for the new home baker and contains some good information that I hadn't come across in my other bread books.

I don't have the Suas book (yet), but do have DiMuzio and Hamelman.  Of those two, Hamelman has more formulas using sourdough than DiMuzio.  If you're into rye sourdoughs, then Bread is the book for you.

You could go over to Amazon and search inside both books, which might help you in your decision.  That option is not available for the Suas tome.

You mentioned you are interested in advanced theory - on bread in general?

Yerffej's picture

Local Breads by Daniel Leader,   Chapter 3 of this book is devoted entirely to creating and maintaining sourdough.

Bread by Jeffrey Hamelman,  has an excellent and complete section on sourdough in the appendix.

The Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book by Laurel Robertson,  thoroughly covers the subject of Flemish Desem bread which is unique in its creation. Creating a desem starter is a bit intensive and well worth the effort, as desem has a fantastic and unique flavor. The regular sourdough instruction, in this otherwise great book, is a bit misguided in its suggestion of the addition of commercial yeast. I would skip those particular instructions in this book.


ramat123's picture

Thank you all for the great and most informative answers.

Actually, I decided to combine the answers.

It's seems that Hamekman's book is a must so I will order it.

The theory in DiMuzio book is the broader of all (and I'm lucky, a friend has it and he doesn't use it) and Laurel's kitechen bread book for the Flimish Desem bread.

I will get 3 books for the price of 3.

I am trying to attach a picture of this morning breads but I can't find the option.

Thank you so much,


longhorn's picture

Hi David! 

Of the three books I only have Hamelman's and I think it is superb. I am not much of an experimenter - I just make a few kinds of bread and love them enough I don't try other things. Hamelman has some great insight into subtleties of bread making that are missing from many of the more "popular" books. (NOTE: this is not a slap at Dimuzio and Laurel (or Ortiz or...) for I know their books are good by the people who recommend them. I just don't have them!)

Another book you might want to consider has NO RECIPES - or at least I don't recall any. It is Bread Science by Emily Buehler and is available at Emily is a PhD chemist/professional baker and the info she provides on sourdough is really good and useful. The book is $20 plus $4 for shipping and is self-published. I highly recommend it to people who want to know more about the science of sourdough!

Good Luck! And please share your impressions of the DiMuzio and Laurel books relative to Hamelman.


chip c's picture
chip c

 The Italian Baker by carol Fields and/or anything by Nancy Silverton. One other one I like is Daniel Leader's Bread Alone.  They aren't text book type books but, the recipes are boss and thet too are 3 of the top bakers int the country.  ciao

ramat123's picture

Thanks for the help. I will certainly update you as soon as I check the different options.

Doughty's picture

Hi David,

"The Bread Baker's Apprentice" mastering the art of extraordinary bread, by Peter Reinhart: has won two book of the year awards and combines the theory, biochemistry of making bread with practice. He is a full time baking instructor at Johnson and Wales University. USA. Knowledge gained from West Coast USA bakeries and the lessons from Paris's most esteemed bakers. Lots of recipes and excellent pictures. i Love this book. Indeed, this may be the only book that you need. Already a classic. Buy it.


ramat123's picture

Wuld you suggest it for non-yeast baking too?


Thanks, David

longhorn's picture

Bread Baker's Apprentice has about ten sourdough recipes and a number of variations. What is most unique about Reinhart's books IMO has been his dedication to getting more flavour out of bread, in general. The primary message is preferments and presoaks, and retards to allow extended enzyme activity. Sourdoughs require longer processes which accomplishes much of the benefit. Still, the book is IMO very good and has lots of good recipes and ideas. And, with experience almost any bread recipe can be done as a sourdough. Just usually takes longer.

Both Hamelman and Reinhart address details/background a lot of books skip over. One distinction between these books is that Reinhart tends to repeat basic info in every recipe description (so each recipe is fully stand-alone). Hamelman has basic info in the front of each section and the recipes don't repeat  the detailed instructions but expect you to remember what you read. As you gain experience this condensed approach gains appeal but you may find yourself searching from time to time for detailed instructions as you gain experience.

Good Luck!