The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hi I'm new :)

Kogepan's picture

Hi I'm new :)

Hi everyone,

Been looking at TFL for a while now but just became a member.  I love the site, the pictures, and the discussions.  

Been baking more bread recently, especially now that I have a KitchenAid mixer (my husband convinced me it's something every girl wants so he bought one)..

Was going to post a question about some baking I did yesterday but I thought I'd write a hello first!

I've been looking at different recipes and posts here, but can someone tell me whether there is a list of more tried and tested recipes as opposed to individual members' entries, or is there no distinction? I was just wondering because at for example, you can see at a glance from the star ratings and number of reviews which recipes were more 'successful'.  

Happy Easter baking!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

experiments, information, problem solving and getting dough to give the desired result and less on being a recipe file.  Some recipes are listed in the margin and hundreds more in the discussions and links.  Not all recipes act the same in any given kitchen.  We have fun comparing, learning and tweaking and formulating.  It's all about each person's bread baking journey and that means different things to different individuals.  Everyone has their own agenda and learning curve.  

Welcome to the Laboratory!  :)

Kogepan's picture

but I just wanted to find recipes for a good starting point or base to build on.  I did find the 'Lessons' and the 'favorite recipes' so I think that willbe a good start.  And just like you said already,  I did actually come here to ask a question about following my mother-in-law's recipe but coming out with a different result in my own kitchen, to my husband's dismay :(.  Will do that soon!  Thanks for the welcome!

richkaimd's picture

I'm a broken record on this subject, but here I go again.  I suggest, since you obviously want to learn by combining reading and practice, that you buy a beginner's text book of bread baking.  While I'd never suggest that you stop reading this website, working from a text book, like DiMuzio's Bread Baking, can take you from the bottom up using graded exercises.  There are other texts, Floyd Mann's The Fresh Loaf for example, for beginners such as yourself, and many texts for the more advanced.  It's your choice.  It's just that bread cook books do not have the obligation for treating you as beginner as well as the texts do.  DiMuzio's great and not too terribly expensive.  (As often as I've written this, he's yet to offer me a kickback.)

Kogepan's picture

I understand what you about website vs. book.  Though I wouldn't say it's a text book, it's very comprehensive and explains a lot of technical things in her 'Understanding' sections.  It's such a nice book it's even my bedtime reading these days :).  

Will take a peek at DiMuzio's book at the library!

Zhang JiaXiao's picture
Zhang JiaXiao

hello.nice to meet you.i am new too.:)

richkaimd's picture

Besides recommending that newbies buy AND READ a beginner's text book, I suggest the following:

1.)  Read this website a lot and often.  Doing that helps a new reader to get a sense of things about bread baking, learn new words and concepts to consider and so much more.

2.)  Watch all the videos reachable from the link at the top of the page.  Watch them even if you don't know what it's all about yet.  Watch for such things as texture and hand movements.  Then watch them again when you're thinking of making a bread that was made in one of the videos.

3.)  Use the search function a lot.  It's quicker.  Most questions, especially those from new members, have been asked and answered many times before. 

4.)  Because so much of bread baking is done with the hands (feeling the dough, moving the dough about), get some experience with a local baker if you can either by taking a class or just baking for fun with someone nearby.

5.)  Post notes about your progress, successes and failures.  We love that kind of thing.  We love to help and we love to congratulate you on your progress and your breads.

Finally, start slow.  Don't try to reinvent the wheel.  And if you choose to make high hydration slack dough Southern European breads (like baguettes) just know that the crowd you're running with here will think you're shooting for the stars.

Good luck.  Practice a lot.  Have fun.





FrenchNyonya's picture

Hah!! Shooting the stars.. this is exactly what I am doing. Hi! I am new too and I have been trying to "shoot" the stars.. It is very challenging! but I am not going to stop trying (got the baking bug). Sometimes, I get the crust right but then my crumbs will be too dense (too wet) then other times, when I manage to get the crumbs right (with holes and spring...)  but the crust becomes thin...