The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

KC Area TFL Meet Up

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

KC Area TFL Meet Up

We had a very successful first meet up of KC area members. The conversation was lively and the smiles were as plentiful as the fine breads that were brought in to sample and share. There wasn't a bad loaf in the bunch.

Since this was the first meet up, there was no real agenda or ground rules. We just started talking about who we were, what we like to bake, and it all took off from there. There's no big secret to organizing a meet up. All it takes is for you to stop waiting for someone else to make a move and make it happen yourself. Don't worry about operating outside of your comfort zone or not succeeding in getting such a meeting to happen. Just consider the advantages of meeting people who share your interest in bread and serving it to family and friends.

That's a pretty good reward.

Jim Gemborys



ehanner's picture

Please tell me you have a photo of the occasion.


Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

Hi Eric,

My old digital camera had a tough time adjusting to the low lighting levels in the room so the candids of the participants aren't too good. Paul McCool and Fuzzy Whiskers' daughter Serena used their iPhones to take a few snaps so we can hope they took some pictures when our mouths weren't full of bread.

I did get a good shot of most of the breads that were brought in. Seven loaves were brought in; it was a glut of carbohydrates. SuzyR's first Tartine loaf was gone by the time my camera warmed up. I'll post that picture tonight after I get into Photobucket. If you're really curious, I posted a late night ramble and rant on my blog that includes a picture of the breads. Beware of the blog, my late night internal editor function didn't quite make the grade on coherence.

suzyr's picture

We had a great very nice of everyone to come.  Here is a photo I took with my phone of the bread. Not too great, but the bread was wonderful.  Many varieties and we all decided that we wanted to do it again.  At least we have something to build from. I know that my hat is off to Jim for all of his work!  Thank you

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

Wow, I guess I'll have to upgrade my eleven year camera to keep up with all the phones that were taken out for pictures. Time flies and so does technology.

SuzyR brought in four Tartine loaves that taught me I have to get back to the bench and bake some more. Paul's cob loaf was still quite good for today's lunch sandwich. I brought the little boule that's in the center. It's a favorite formula that I've been tweaking with some wheat germ. I also brought the ciabatta looking loaf which was made from the Gallette Persane recipe that I "borrowed" from Clayton's "Breads of France". That large wicker basket held the Dessert bread, a chocolate bread made by UneditedFoodie. Chocolate and bread makes a great combination!

AW's picture


Did you use Maybe at some point I'll do one in Chicago.


Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

The reality is that I was really low tech about organizing. I used this forum to announce that I was interested in particpating in such an event and waited for replies. From there, I used a landline phone to arrange for the space. Floyd was extremely gracious to accomodate my efforts by keeping the announcement up on this site. So other than the use of my computer and internet connection, there wasn't any magic or any apps used at all.

The most difficult part was making the decision to try to get the ball rolling. Since I spent time serving as a union steward when I was a USPS letter carrier, that decision wasn't very hard at all. As a union steward, I learned that in most organizations only 10% of a membership actively participate and an even smaller number actually take on the responsibilty of making decisions. So I did it and now I can take a little bit of pride in what I started.

Arlene, if you will take some time to look through the archives, you'll find that there is a group of bakers in the Chicago area that have meet ups where they talk bread and share samples of what they bake. I'll bet that they'll make room at their table for another baker and another loaf of bread.


theuneditedfoodie's picture


Thanks for organizing the first bread convention of the Kansas-Missouri area. I think this was an enjoyable and learning experience to all of us. We should look forward on building this block. 


pmccool's picture

I'll second (third? fourth?) the comments from the others that we had an enjoyable time.  What's really cool is that these people who seem so interesting on line are even better in person.  And they bake some seriously good breads!

My iPhone 4 has lived down to its family reputation for producing cruddy pictures.  I append them here, with apologies to the subjects.  Guess I should have brought a real camera.


In the first photo, SuzyR to the left and theuneditedfoodie on the right with his wife in the center.  In the second photo, FuzzyWhiskers on the left, Postal Grunt in the center and his wife on the right.  I'll let them out their real names if they wish.

Fun quote for the day from the hostess as I entered the restaurant: "Are you here for the bread convention?"  Must have been the bag I was toting.  We convened, we talked, we ate, and we decided that we need to do it again.  Preferably with even more TFLers present.

My contribution was a Cromarty Cob from Andrew Whitley's Bread Matters and some samples of the starter that I began while still in South Africa.  Who knows, maybe 50 or 60 years down the road someone will be telling a friend that they have a starter handed down by their grandparent who got it from this guy who brought it back with him from Africa.  


amateurbakers's picture

Nice work, Jim and the Kansas City bakers! The loaves look beautiful and tasty.

We've linked this discussion to our meetup page and to our (new this month) blog.

All best wishes from Chicago Amateur Bread Bakers!

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