The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

So, how deep is this rabbit hole?

CarolinaClimber's picture
CarolinaClimber

So, how deep is this rabbit hole?

Greetings all from a South Carolina bread noobie! I have always wanted to give real bread making a go, but never could quite make the plunge other than the occasional pizza or batch of pretzels. Well, I got married a few months ago and we got a kitchenaid as a wedding gift, so here I am. Geeze, I had no idea how complex and interesting the world of bread could be, and I am afraid that I may get lost traversing down here in the rabbit hole! Anyways, I made my first loaf this weekend (Poolish Baguette 'formula' from The Bread Baker's Apprentice), and my wife and I loved the results! I certainly have loads of questions though, so I am going to put up some photos and questions I have over on the General Discussions Forum. Although this journey seems daunting now, I am looking forward to developing my bread making skills and seeing where this leads!

David R's picture
David R

This rabbit hole is Bring Your Own Shovel territory - how deep would you like to go? 🙂

The good news, I guess, is that it never needs to get financially difficult - the most exotic kinds of flour still have price tags you can read without straining your eyes, and even those exotic flours are things you don't need. The money problem is in the fancy equipment, all of which is totally optional. (Unless you're highly successful selling a lot of bread, so first you need a bigger oven and then you need a better mixer and finally you need a building and three employees and a truck - but no need to worry about that kind of stuff until at least next week. 😁)

We're lucky (unlike photography, say...) that it's totally possible to make the finest level of bread without any expensive equipment. Not that some of the equipment for baking isn't nice... 🙂

 

EDIT: Well, OK, ovens are usually expensive and you're not making bread without an oven. So I'm not quite right.

MTloaf's picture
MTloaf

It is deep and dark at yet so simple. I would suggest getting familiar with one recipe at a time and getting the feel for that bread rather than always trying a different one. I learned that the hard way. Oh and get a scaled to weigh everything.

 

BethJ's picture
BethJ

My best advice is that bread is forgiving.  As you learn, some loaves will be this, and others will be that, but for the most part most will edible and tasty. 

Experiment, document, and enjoy your journey!

jameseng's picture
jameseng

And I might not even be referring specifically to bread, but more generally to any undertaking that you are interested in and that you work at over the years. Your skills will grow - like a batch of dough proofing in the refrigerator!

It's a nice, supportive community here at The Fresh Loaf. It's good to know that you're not alone out there and...if something feels daunting to you, then it has felt daunting to others as well. That's a part of the journey.

Just don't run your KitchenAid too hard and for too long. How do I know NOT to do this? Hmm...

You'll come to find that you don't even need a mixer to make excellent bread. Congratulations on your recent nuptials!