The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Arts and Crafts Market # 4 and a new flour to play with.

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Mebake's picture
Mebake

Arts and Crafts Market # 4 and a new flour to play with.

It has been a while since I last posted here on TFL. I have been quite busy, and there was much in my life to take care of, that I hadn’t had spare time to follow the wonderful bread adventures of TFL members.

As some of you may remember, I had missed my chocolate class back in January this year, and planned for a makeup class in order to complete my amateur pastry course. Yes, I’ve finally done it. Enjoyable, could have been. Messy?, you bet, but it is over now. One more theoretical exam in baked goods, and I’ll be officially done.

Lately, I paid a visit to the local mill which I regularly source my bread and rye flours from. I met the sales person and he offered me new flours, many of which were bakery mixes. I explained to him that I need flours that are free from additives and preservatives, so he offered me his (French traditional), or T65. I was ecstatic about the idea, and bought a bag of 25 kg of the T65 in addition to my regular bread flour. Yesterday, I had a chance to open the bag and see for myself how it compares to my bread flour As shown in the picture, the T-65 ( on the left) is slightly creamier in texture than the bread flour due to the increase in ash content. The bread flour was close to T-60 than you’d expect from white flour, so there wasn’t much of a difference. However, I was disappointed when I read the label.  The “traditional flour” had additives, probably to correct the enzymatic content of the flour. I suspect that bread flour from the mill also contains such additives.  I’ll bake with it soon and report the results here.         

As for Dubai’s Arts and crafts market (ARTE) last Friday, I baked 3 types of bread: The usual 80% Rye, Whole wheat multigrain, and the new entry, Roasted Garlic bread from Hamleman’s (Bread).

The day started out slow, and footfall wasn’t as anticipated. The draw landed me next to the organizer’s table, and she was the first to buy a loaf of each. She is a very enthusiastic and encouraging lady, I must say. My cousin, who I began training to be my baking assistant, has joined me on the market day and brought along his sister’s lovely homemade cheese straws.  I walked around the market, chatting with vendors who unanimously agreed that the business was indeed sluggish. I had passing visitors from Finland, UK, Canada, India, and Germany; the latter being most interested in Artisan bread. The bread that sold most was the roasted garlic bread. Baked fresh the day before, it was packed with sweet garlic aroma!

To kick things up a bit, I sliced more bread, slathered with butter, placed them on a plate and stood by my table offering visitors a taste. I had prepared some printed A4 sheets that contain information on the advantages and uses of naturally leavened artisan breads and distributed those too.

By the end of the day, I had sold close to 40% of my breads. I packed and left home. Driving my car through the parking lot away from the mall , I was thankful that I was able to persevere through the physically taxing days of baking , and make it to the market day. I may downside my production for the next market from 18 Kg worth of dough to 15 Kg , due to my limited oven and mixer capacity.

 Khalid

Comments

golgi70's picture
golgi70

Another Nice Showing Khalid, 

Hang in there as some times its tough.  But with that great product slowly but surely folks will make a point to stop in if for nothing but your wares.  

Cheers

Josh

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks! I will, Josh.

Congrats on your return to the market. I'm sure that your clients are now excited to have you back. 

Wishing you all the best,

Khalid

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

dropped off a bit but no worries.... your bread is way better than they can make at home or buy anywhere else so they will come.   Glad you finished the chocolate portion of your  class and can't wait to see the photos of your creations .

Well done and happy baking Khalid

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thank you for the encouragement, DA! 

Much appreciated,

(keep those blogs coming!) your breads are becoming a favorite among this community.

khalid

CAphyl's picture
CAphyl

And what wonderful breads.  interesting information on the flours.  Where is the market that you sell your breads at?  My sister-in-law's cousin lives in Dubai, and maybe I can inform her of your outstanding work and expertise, which I can vouch for personally, as I have used your recipe to make outstanding bread!  With products this good, the people are sure to figure out that this is the best bread around....Thanks for sharing.  Best, Phyllis

Mebake's picture
Mebake

The market is a monthly event that takes place in two shopping malls in Dubai; Festival city, and Times square. Food vendors are only allowed in Times square center, and i am there every month. 

Many thanks for the kinds words , Phyllis. I see you've immensely improved in baking skills! You sure got the passion.

All the best wishes,

Khalid

 

mcs's picture
mcs

Great variety and beautiful presentation too! 

Unfortunately sometimes we have no control over the amount of foot traffic that comes to see our products, but you should be proud knowing that everything that you baked came out looking like it did, and that every customer who bought your bread was satisfied with their purchase.  :)  Keep up the good work.

-Mark

Mebake's picture
Mebake

receive words of encouragement from a pro like yourself!

All the best wishes to you and to Sinclair Bakery.

Khalid

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

I can see why people would buy that at the market, especially if they are hungry and want to eat bread right away.

Out of curiosity, what do you do with unsold bread? Obviously it is better to have a bit too much than too little, but it seems a shame to have so much unsold bread.  I'd think that all of the extra bread could make good "samples" for local eateries or markets.... Maybe someone who doesn't get to your market can become a steady customer if they get their hands on  your unsold bread.

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Roasted garlic bread was a hit! i will be baking it again for future markets.

Unfortunately, the bread i sell is all fresh and has not been frozen, and most has been baked 3 days ahead. Therefore, it won't survive another trip to new clients, and will go stale quickly. I've given away excess loaves to friends and family, and they loved them.

Thanks for the kind words, and ideas, David.

 

Khalid

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I'm sure they taste as good as they look. I have to believe that your business will grow by word of mouth. 

Hmmm ... Maybe if you put out a tray of sliced garlic bread with a fan behind it ..... ;-)

David

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks for the encouraging words, David. You have always inspired me with your bread. 

Nice idea ! although a small toaster would be more practical ;)

Khalid

 

Syd's picture
Syd

Khalid,

Lovely boules !  Well shaped. They stand up round and proud.  Nice scoring, too.:)  I don't see anything in those additives that is 'unnatural': malted flour (probably barley), E300 (ascorbic acid or vitamin c) and vegetable based enzymes.  Those are all okay in my book.  

Don't be disheartened by the lack of sales at the market.  Your breads are of  a very high quality and had there been more people, there would have been more sales.  I look forward to the next installment of your market sales.

Best,

Syd

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Well thanks for the reminder, Syd! right, E300 is ascorbic acid! (why the heck won't they write just that?!). good to be reassured. The flour is weaker than i'm used to, by the way; i'd say around 11.6 protein.

I'm quite satisfied with the way they looked, this is enough reward to me.

Many thanks!

Best,

Khalid

twcinnh's picture
twcinnh

Wonderful post Khalid.  Just looking at the pictures of your bread is making me hungry.

 

Tom C

Mebake's picture
Mebake

:) Well, go bake some! 

Thanks, Tom!

Khalid

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Great job, Khalid!

Remember, sales will fluctuate throughout the season for whatever reason. Having said that, I hope you don't feel dissuaded by the drop in sales. We all know your breads are top-notch, so don't fault them! Keep up the effort and best of luck.

Your friend, 

Zita

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Zita  you are so kind.

Best wishes to Backerie!

Khalid

isand66's picture
isand66

Hi Khalid,

Thanks for the update on your market day.  Sorry your great looking breads didn't sell out this time, but I'm sure in time you won't have any left-overs.  That garlic bread sounds fantastic and looks amazing.

Curious to hear how your new French style flour works out for you.  I buy a similar version from King Arthur Flour that I really like a lot.

Regards,

Ian

Mebake's picture
Mebake

The garlic bread was phenomenal. Roasted garlic fills you house with a heavenly aroma that lingers on for a day!

I will try some french recipe with the flour. I know it won't perform as King Arthur's, but, who knows.

Thank for the nice words, Ian!

Khalid

 

rossnroller's picture
rossnroller

Regardless of your current sales, success is only a bit of time away with excellent-looking (and no doubt tasting) products like those! Sounds like you're doing everything right, offering samples etc. Is there another venue with more foot-traffic?

Did you stick to Hamelman's garlic bread recipe exactly, or do some tweaks? I haven't tried that one, but your comments have me planning to remedy that ASAP. We have an abundant supply of the most wonderful organically-raised garlic we grew in our back yard last year, which I imagine would come into its own in garlic bread. Thanks for the alert!

And very best of luck with your baking business. With your endeavour, commitment and excellent bread, you deserve success.

Cheers!
Ross

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Ross.

There are of course other venues in Dubai, but we're only allowed to sell food in this event, without being licensed . That will take time, and money of course. 

oh, you'll be in love with roasted garlic in bread. Enough said!

Many thanks to those wonderful words of encouragement, Ross.

all the best,

Khalid

 

varda's picture
varda

Hi Khalid.  

These market fluctuations can be tough.  Especially when you see the bread you worked so hard on sitting there with few buyers.  Then the next time you cut back and sell out too soon.  Oh well.  In any case your bread looks wonderful.  No surprises there!

-Varda

Mebake's picture
Mebake

I'll hang in there. my wife wants baking to take place somewhere else. She can't stand the kitchen being so messy on my bake days :) I'll have to clean up fast!

Thanks, Varda! and best wishes to you on your lovely endeavors.

Khalid

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Hi Khalid.

Very nice display of your baking talent!  I especially like the look of the batards on the right side of table.  What kind of loaves are those?

I hope the crowds start snatching up your goods in greater numbers soon.

Happy baking.

John

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, John! 

The loaves on the right are whole wheat multigrain from hamleman's bread. I rolled them in oats after shaping. They looked great.

best wishes to you too

Khalid