The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bread Manifesto

Shutzie27's picture

Bread Manifesto

The following is my bread manifesto:

I do not ever ever bake bread for money, unless I am seriously and quite literally faced with homelessness. I'm far too selfish to turn this corner of reprieve in my life into a job.

I will never put myself in a position for anyone to turn baking bread into work or labor for me.

I will always make sure every loaf, roll or breadstick that comes from my hands is made with love and the excitement that comes from sharing something good and showing love in a tangible way. The ability to bake bread from scratch by hand is, after all, to some degree a gift and one that should be shared. (Granted, whether or not I have this gift is still debateable).

Someday I will make a baguette. I don't have a pan for it, and probably not the oven, either. I have been reading and re-reading the recipie and studying it like it was a final exam in the class of Life. I don't believe I am ready yet...perhaps when I've finished this semester of law school. But someday, I will make a baguette.  

After that, and only after that, I will attempt to make a challah bread.

I must also make another sourdough again, though I'm not entirely sure where that fits in and it might depend on how law school goes.

And finally, before I die, to celebrate a personal and deep victory of my own, I will make a croissant. Well, probably six or a dozen, because that's usually what the recipe calls for. I shall be exceedingly careful as to who I chose to share the croissants with, as well. The ones that turn out, anyway. It's not the kind of patience, care, precision, and effort one puts in for just anyone, after all.


GaryJ's picture

A fine and noble manifesto Shutzie27 ; - ) Pretty much sums up my feelings about bread baking. I have occasionally caught myself contemplating attempting making bread for a living and it has been suggested a few times by friends and family. I resist the temptation. Great pleasures and passions in life such as this should not be squandered to turning a buck without extremely careful consideration. Cheers, Gary

Shutzie27's picture

It's good to know my mindset makes sense to others as well!

LindyD's picture

Traditional baguettes aren't baked in a pan.

Here's a recent thread on the topic of baguettes.

Good luck in your bread quest but do keep in mind that in order to learn, one must bake.

Shutzie27's picture

Thank you for the link, I've printed out the third recipie on the thread already and have learned more than a few things I didn't know. And as far as learning and baking go, no worries there--I've been baking like crazy while I still have the time (I'm starting law school in the fall).

My impression is that breads are reflective of progressive skill to some degree. So lately I've been trying to do some Italian bread and country loaves in an effort to learn how to do crusts well. I figure if I can't do a crust, I can't do a baguette. I'm also working on my shaping skills, which are slowly but surely improving. If I can do a good sourdough boule, then I figure maybe I'll be ready to braid challah. That's where that part came from. Thank you again!

HuskerMychal's picture

I LOVE the post. Many times I have been asked/told to make my muffins for sale. Specially my pearsnip muffins, a blend of parsnip and pears. I won't do it because of two reasons. One, I enjoy baking them and if I had to do it for work I wouldn't as much. Think mechanics personal car here as a like matter. Number two is because of type 1 diabetes and my high Insulin demands I give away most the muffins I cook. I take them to meetings at my gun club and range, to church meetings, to my wifes office for her people when they have meetings or any type thing.

My bucket list is not as deep as yours. I just want to be able to make a good pumpernickel. After I can get my bread to stop looking like a aircraft carrier when they are done.  You know, flat top LOL.

Mychal "the muffin man"

Shutzie27's picture

Those muffins sound delicious, Mychal, and now you have me wanting some! I'm a fan of both parsnips and pears and I don't know that it ever would have occurred to me to put them together. Now that I've read about your muffins, though, it strikes me as a mouth-watering idea.

And I don't think I'm anywhere near a pumpernickel! Good luck!

It's funny you mentioned your Type 1 diabetes. The first time I ever baked a loaf of bread was actually from a diabetes cookbook because my fiancee had just been diagnosed as having Type 2. He's since lost weight and seems to be ok and if off of medication, but needless to say I kept right on baking bread and here I am today!

GaryJ's picture

Hi Mychal,

If it is not a family secret, would you care to share your pearsnip muffin recipe? They sound like they would be absolutely delicious.

Cheers, Gary

HuskerMychal's picture


It's not any type of secret. Today during the yankees and whoever they are going to beat I will type it up and send it to you in a pm.


HuskerMychal's picture

Some times I am slower than a snail LOL

Pearsnip Muffins

1-ounce sliced almonds
8 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 whole eggs
3/4 cup plain whole milk or greek yogurt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
8 ounces sugar
6 ounces grated parsnips
4 ounces grated or fine chopped dried pears - if grated are used, strain through a tea towel to remove excess moisture

Place the almonds in a single layer in a pie pan and place in oven. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake the nuts until lightly toasted, approximately 20 minutes while the oven heats.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, and salt in the bowl of a food processor, and process for 5 seconds.

Whisk the eggs, yogurt, vegetable oil, and sugar in a large mixing bowl until combined. Add the flour mixture, pears and parsnips, and fold with a spatula until all of the flour is moistened, there will be some lumps. Divide the mixture evenly among the muffin cups using a level 2 1/2-ounce disher or 1/3 cup measure. Sprinkle the top of each muffin with the toasted almonds. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the muffins reach an internal temperature of 210 degrees F and are golden brown, rotating halfway through baking.

GaryJ's picture

Many thanks for the recipe Mychal.

I'm looking forward to giving them a try when I get a chance.