Kamut and Polenta Bread

I have the habit of buying myself a Chrismas present each year. Nothing frivolous, but something I really want and something I might not otherwise buy. This time it was the third Tartine book – encouraged by a number of reviews, an article about the sheer amount of research Chad Robertson put into the creation of this book and my friend Sara who thought I would enjoy the book given the large number of recipes using ancient grains created by Chad. And Sara was right. I have only had the book for about a month, but in between the present-buying frenzy, traveling and Christmas itself, I have already baked the Chocolate Rye Cookies (crack in cookie form if you ask me), eaten far too many of a batch of the 50/50 sabl├ęs, munched my way through 3 loaves of the Toasted Buckwheat Bread and revolutionised my scones thanks to learning about Tartine’s technique of using both baking powder and sourdough

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Bread-baking for busy people

I am far from an expert when it comes to bread-baking, I leave that to my mum. But I am passionate about home-made bread, even more so after just having watched a documentary on German TV about the disappearance of old-fashioned neighbourhood bakers that still bake their own fresh loaves and pastries every morning and that are being replaced by big chains and bakeries within big supermarkets which simply bake half-baked frozen breads and pastries. Although that by itself is alarming enough, what really shocked me is the kind of bread these new and modern bakeries churn out. The message that was reinforced by the documentary is that bread-baking is not for the faint-hearted and requires a certain amount of flexibility and finesse as no batch of dough will be alike. While frustrating for the home baker, the fluctuations in the essential characteristics of a flour (how “thirsty” it is, how much gluten it contains etc) are a nightmare for

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