Cookbook Review: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day

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Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking
by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois

Reviewed by Kylie Archer

Bread and I have never had a particularly successful relationship. Don’t get me wrong, I have no problems eating it, but making it from scratch in my home has always been unsuccessful.

I’ve even been to a bread making class at my local community college, but to no avail. Something good came of it, that’s where I learnt about a book that I’ve recently started using: Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day.

Five Minutes A Day? I agree. But after my initial skepticism I decided to give it a go and I’ve just eaten some of my fourth loaf. The method in the book has no kneading, and only takes around 20-30 active minutes to establish your dough. Then you’re hot to trot!

The master recipes allow you to make many different types of loaf from the one dough with subtle changes in shape, finishing, baking methods and timings. I’ve doubled the dough this time and will get 8 loaves out of my dough. The dough is then stored in the fridge for up to 14 days. This is where the five minutes a day comes to play, you break off some dough, shape it into your chosen loaf, leave it to rise (sneakily this time is not included in your 5 mins and nor is baking), do any finishing (eg slashing or dusting the loaf) then bake.

You do need a pizza stone and a pizza peel, but I had the rest of the equipment already. The bread so far has come out crusty on the outside and soft on the inside- just by following the book. I’ve made two batches of dough with little effort and excellent results.

The recipes range from boule and baguette through to bagels and other enriched breads. The one let down, not enough pretty coloured pictures of crusty bread! You also need to remember that the measurements and temperatures are US, so you’ll need to convert them.

 Rating 8/10 This is a book to buy and use!

If you like their method and like baking bread, you really can make excellent bread at home with very little effort.

 Here’s the blog of the authors of the book.

 

About Kylie

I’m a mother of 2, educational designer, and self-confessed cookbookaholic. My husband had to build an ikea bookshelf just to house all of my cookbooks.

I make my own cheese, pasta, jam and icecream. I haven’t yet MamaBaked, but would love to start a group in my area. In the meantime, I’m trying to perfect some “big batch” recipes of my own and cooking vicariously through MamaBake’s Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

 

My first loaf using the method!

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