The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Cheers From Kansas City

b166er's picture

Cheers From Kansas City

I can't believe I am on an online forum for bread......... Actually, that's a lie. It makes perfect sense.

So, in a nutshell..... I'm a corporate burnout/dropout who, once again, has decided what he wants to do when he grows up. Bake. I really love the food world and can't believe I have been away for 15 years. Baking appeals to that fringe side of me. As if the food industry was not subversive enough, I decided to bake..... Anyway. I took a job at Panera bread. I needed some entry level experience somewhere and the pay is decent and they provide insurance. Its not what I want long term, but it will work for now.

I am applying for a pastry program at a local college. They only allow 15 students a year, so.... Who knows. I think I have a decent shot. If that doesn't pan out, I'm not sure where I would go for an education.The art institute has a comprehensive baking program but 26 grand is just too much to think about right now. The French Pastry school in Chicago has an 8 week, bread and breakfast pastry program. Not sure of the price but its 4 states away......

I hope to someday bake for a nice restaurant, hotel, etc. Perhaps wholesale bake or maybe have a bakery/coffee shop of my own. Of course, much of this is very long term but I am known for getting ahead of myself. As some of you may come to realize.

So, bread is really my passion and I am passionate enough to try to teach myself. I have read Hamelman's "Bread" as well as Robertson's "Tartine Bread". The latter is not really written for the aspiring professional, necessarily. However, I like the approach and other than time and space, baking 55 loaves is no different than baking 2. I have had good success with Poolish and Biga bread. Boules, baguettes and Botards. Some at home. Some I took to work to use the Revent deck oven WITH STEAMER!!!!!!!! Again, I like to get ahead of myself so, its time for Levain/Sourdoughs.

So, my starter is ready to go. I have already written up a "pan up sheet" for this weekend:

- 2 Loaves (Boules) of Tartine's country - 100% spec

- 1 loaf (pan bread) of Tartine's country and 3 pizza crusts - With rye instead of WW and I am letting the Levain build a little longer

- 2 loaves (boules) of Tartine's Polenta bread (I'm adding some actual roasted sweet corn too)

- 12 Sweet potato ginger rolls (my take on a cinnamon roll). I have not finalized this recipe yet. I think it will be vegan too. lol


Sorry for the long first post. Would love to hear (read) from some of you.


Floydm's picture



Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

After you've been hanging out here at TFL for a while, you'll realize that here are quite a few home bakers from the KC area that participate in the forums here. Some of us are raggedy home bakers and some are really quite good but we're all having a good time doing something we enjoy. Please share some pictures of what you've been baking lately.



pmccool's picture

Glad to see another KC enthusiast.  As Jim has noted, there are a number of us in the area.  We had a meet-up this Spring, which gave those who attended the opportunity to put faces to the names we've seen on-line.

Which part of the KC area do you call home?  I live in Overland Park, on the Kansas side of the state line.


tomsw's picture

I live in Lees Summit and have been a member of this blog for a few months now, but was a lurker for much longer. This is a great place to exchange to exchange ideas, recipes and methods. Everyone here is friendly and always willing to help with any problems you might have. I've learned most of what I know about sourdough from the members of this blog. I've attached a link to my intro and some pics of a Norwich Sourdough loaf. Good luck and welcome.




dabrownman's picture

KCMO - welcome.  Good luck with your baking quest.

Happy baking

b166er's picture

Wow, thats amazing. I have lived all over KC. Grew up in the Northeast area. Spent time in Blue Springs and Independence (still have a house in Indy I am trying to sell). Last year I inherited a family home in Roeland Park. One of the few communities on the Kansas side that I ever felt jazzed about living in (sorry Paul, lol). I bake in Brookeside, The Plaza and Westport. I lovingly call those areas "The Burroughs".

The Pastry program is at Johnson County Community College.

If anyone is geeky enough, I can be followed on Instagram under "bigh3d" or Jason Provo. My recent bread shots are there. All of which came from my phone, so. I will definitely set up the tripod and start taking better foodfotos. Photography was another passion I let fall to the wayside, slightly.

Thanks for the responses everyone. My weekly builds start tomorrow a.m., after work. Will mix after I wake. Will be baking Friday morning. More to come.

b166er's picture

Any of you KC folk have a good place to get baking supplies local?

pmccool's picture

that I would have asked of you!  Or does your employer have a captive supply chain?


b166er's picture

At Panera, we only bake. preshaped dough is delivered to us daily, so......... I am getting no real experience in bread baking there. Not to say that its a total loss and/or  the product bad. Just not want I want to create myself.

As far as supplies, B&J Peerless, in KCK has a great selection of commercial kitchen stuff but not a ton of baking stuff. Most importantly, proofing baskets. Prydes in Westport is my next spot. They have a great selction for the home. I have not looked for baskets yet.