The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Living Bread - The Book

albacore's picture
albacore

Living Bread - The Book

Anyone read Living Bread by Daniel Leader?

Thoughts?

suave's picture
suave

I looked at it briefly and I did not hate it, but I find it hard to get excited about yet another random compilation of French recipes.  May be I'll get it at some point later, but I keep reminding myself that so far I've used exactly zero recipes out of my last 3 purchases.

PS.  I did enjoy the part where he mentions stone-milling and fetishism in the same sentence.

albacore's picture
albacore

Yes, how many "recipes" in a bread book or cookbook do we ever actually use? Even in a book you like and treasure I bet it's seldom more than 25%.

It's tempting to get the Kindle version because they are often a lot cheaper, but I got "The Handmade Loaf" in Kindle when it was on offer and it's just about impossible to follow. Recipe books definitely need real pages.

Lance

emmsf's picture
emmsf

I bought daniel leader’s new book and I really do like it. I agree – how many more French bread recipes does one need?!  But this is actually a lovely tour of some terrific French bakeries. And the formulas aren’t ones I’ve seen before. Many are quite creative and they seek to replicate some of the unique breads made at the bakeries he has included. It’s somehow more than just another cookbook.  I find it a good addition to my collection, in part for the formulas, in part for the photographs and in part for the stories about the bakers and bakeries he has visited.

albacore's picture
albacore

Thanks emmsf; like many of us here, I am somewhat overendowed with bread books. This one still tempts me though (the only one at the moment). I think I'll put it on my birthday list!

It would be nice to buy Kindle books to save space (and they are often a lot cheaper), but I find no enjoyment in reading them - only useful to target a specific recipe or two.

Lance

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

I subscribe to bookbub.com email notices, and the cooking category, and have been notified of great deals, of a lot of the major bread authors when their books go on sale for US $.99 to $3.99.

If they are real cheap, I just get them anyway.  Some have inspired me to get the hard copy.  I got both Tartine bread books lin Kindle format for around $2.99 each, and was so impressed by the photography, that I bought the hard-copy editions on 'zon used market.

Over the past two years I got all the major authors, CHEAP:

  • Forkish's   FWSY & Elements of Pizza;  
  • Reinhart's BBA, C&C,  Whole Grain Breads, American Pie and Perfect Pan Pizza.
  • Field's Italian Baker.
  • Bertinet's first two books,
  • Kimbell's  Sourdough School.
  • Beranbaum's Bread Bible.
  • Hensperger's Bread Bible.
  • Gemignani's Pizza Bible.
  • Vetri's Mastering Pizza.
  • Ed Wood's Classic Sourdoughs.
albacore's picture
albacore

"I got both Tartine bread books in Kindle format for around $2.99 each, and was so impressed by the photography, that I bought the hard-copy editions on 'zon used market."

An interesting point about photography. For me a bread book needs some photos so you can see what the breads are likely to look like. I think a case in point is Hamelman's "Bread" which is lacking in this respect. Maybe it's time for a 3rd edition with some pictures?

On the other hand, I think if the photos are overdone, the book becomes not so much a guide book as a coffee table book. We've all seen those contrasty B&W shots of the flour in mid-flight having just left the baker's hands before it hits the bench. These shots are designed to sell books (and fill up pages) - they add nothing to their usefulness.

Lance

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

as they say.

The average book-buyer is generally not a connoisseur of the subject matter.  It's mainly the cover, the title, and the sub-title that make the sale.  

 I've had buyer's remorse for more than a few books, such that I now mostly hold back until there are ample reviews, and I can get it cheaply on the used market, or get a ridiculously low price when the Kindle edition goes on sale.   

The recent baking frenzy has depleted the Amazon used book market of all reasonably priced copies of the major bread authors.