The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hi from Phoenix

RayH's picture

Hi from Phoenix

I'm RayH from Phoenix AZ, I'm new to baking. I've been using a bread machine for the past few years, and have decided to get deeper into the art of baking. Get my hands into the dough so to speak. I will probably do more reading than writing, since I am a total newb when it comes to baking without the machine.  I do have The Fresh Loaf on my Kindle Fire. Also have the book Flour Water Salt Yeast by Ken Forkish also on my KF. Plus a few others and various cookbooks. Looking forward to learning a lot more from this website.

Ford's picture

I am a home baker who regularily uses this forum.  Floyd Mann is the host here.  We all are here to share experiences and to help others in their quest of baking bread.  Welcome!



Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Hi RayH.  Jealous of your weather down there.  My parents are retiring and moving down to Mesa (half year) this week actually.

I find my bread machine useful for certain tasks.  I let the machine do the mixing and kneading (depending on the type of bread) and then I do the rest out of the machine and bake in the oven.  If you need any advice, let me know what model you have and I will try to help out.  The machine is a great way to start and learn all the basics.  I did however, make a loaf in it ONCE, and never again.  You can do so much better just by baking the loaf outside of the machine.

Good luck.



dabrownman's picture

to the right place to find out anything about bread.  The search function here is a great way to get an answer or research a topic but the folks here will answer anything you can't find there.  Welcome and hello for Gilbert, AZ. 

moodswt's picture

(Can you imagine anyone being jealous of our 110 degree weather?!) I started seriously baking bread when I retired a few years ago. I had two different bread machines and never really liked the results. Finally, I got Nancy Silverton's Breads from the La Brea Bakery and I've been an experimenting maniac ever since. Still learning, of course! I've had good luck with Peter Reinhart's Whole grain Breads, too. Gotta tell you, though, this Fresh Loaf web site has been the very best resource, bar none. I've only posted a wee bit because everyone else's info is so fantastic! You can go on and on in here on different threads. I recommend choosing a couple of different forums to be sent to your regular email alerts.

One tip from my own newbie experiences: If you're interested in sourdough, you might get a good starter going from an informal mix of flour and tap water. Or not. The weird thing was that when we lived downtown, that was what I used, chemical-treated city water and no finicky recipe...worked great! Then we moved to a townhome on its own well, supposedly better water, and all my starters kept failing, even after I switched to distilled water.  Finally, I sent away for a King Arthur Flour Co. starter and have kept it going for about a year now and use any water, tap or distilled. Point is, kitchen environments are creatures with their own natural yeasts in the air and things like that can influence how your bread making goes. 

So much of bread making seems to be hit and miss, constant experimentation. So, dig in, make a mess, accept some failures and enjoy!


breadbakin fool's picture
breadbakin fool

Hi Ray, I'm also from Phoenix, and that's pretty much how I use this site.  I don't post but I find myself coming here every day to read

and learn and be inspired.  It's a wonderful resource if you have the breadbakng obsession....cause a lot of us here definitely do.