Honey Whole-Wheat Bread from A Passion for Bread by Master Baker Lionel Vatinet
Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts. ~ James Beard
There are few things that are as satisfying to create in your own kitchen as a gorgeous loaf of homemade bread. The aroma of yeast bread baking in the oven is intoxicating and there is nothing quite as memorable as the first bite of steaming hot bread graced with a bit of butter.
Gorgeous artisan breads are one of our main indulgences whenever we travel to Europe. The bakeries are filled with stunning baguettes, boules, and bâtards. It’s honestly one of our favorite things to eat whenever we travel across the pond, particularly to France. Just pass me a loaf of freshly baked crusty French bread, a bit of butter, a hefty piece of local cheese, and a nice bottle of wine; then call me in a few hours. 😉
Since traveling to Europe is not a frequent occurrence, we have to improvise here in the states. That may mean finding a suitable bakery that makes beautiful loaves of breads or teach yourself the art of making artisan breads at home.
I was excited when I was contacted about receiving a copy of Master Baker Lionel Vatinet’s book, A Passion For Bread: Lessons from a Master Baker. Lionel apprenticed for seven years at Les Compagnons due Devoir. This French craftsman’s guild dates back to the Middle Ages, so you can bet they have this bread thing figured out by now. He was also the founding instructor at the San Francisco Baking Institute where he instructed talented bakers from all over the world, including bakeries such as La Brea, Panera, and Cottage Lane in New Zealand. In addition, his breads have been featured in O, The Oprah Magazine, Saveur, and Food & Wine.
Lionel practices his craft every day at his bakery and café, La Farm Bakery in Cary, NC, which he operates with his wife, who is also an artisan bread baker. I was fortunate to meet Lionel in Atlanta earlier this year at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival and saw, tasted, and took home several of his gorgeous breads. Artisan bread baking is a passion and it requires practice to get it right and to make it perfect. That’s where this book comes in.
I would love to learn to make a great French bread, I have made regular white bread, the dill bread and a rye bread. How exciting to have a chance to win this cookbook.
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This pain de mie is in the oven as I type…it looks wonderful. If you haven’t checked it out yet my favorite bread website is The Daily Loaf!
Even though I have fabulous French breads within easy walking distance every day, I still love to bake my own. As you say, it is magical and intoxicating and extremely satisfying. But although I usually make special breads – Challah, brioche, yeasted coffee cakes or filled breads like gozleme – I never seem to make the every day loaves like baguettes, miches, country loaves…. and I would absolutely love to try. I need that inspiration to make a gorgeous bread like you honey whole wheat loaf (which is perfect)! I would love this book!
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I remember growing up when we got our first breadmaker and how exciting that was. The UPS man would come to deliver something for my dad’s work and mom would share bread she had just made. The look of joy on his face when he would bite into it is hard for me to put words to. Throughout the years i have learned to make breads in a mixer and continue to want to expand the craft for my family and friends that visit. I love to make french bread and I make our bread for daily use as well although it could always get better! I would love to have a book that explains the ins and outs and helps me find what I am missing. I can already tell I need a better thermometer and a nicer scale but other than that I am at a loss for technique and ideas. There are so many breads out there I want to learn and try and even if I don’t win the book I will be buying it. Today I stumbled across your webpage trying to find a different recipe for wheat bread as I wanted to try something new. I am really happy I found you!
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I love to make pan Marino, Italian Rosemary bread and I use it in my christmas stuffing with three kinds of mushrooms and prosciutto, yum,
I am a culinary student and am taking my first baking classes this coming spring semester. I love to bake bread and have made all kinds including French bread, white and whole wheat!
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Used to make a honey-wheat bread ages ago and would love to try again. This looks like a fabulous book and a great loaf!
my favorite bread I baked in the past was a loaf of rosemary bread. so yummy!
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I just ordered an instant read thermometer. I have been making bread forever but always the dump and stir method. I started at 10 and am now retired and thinking I’d like to try and bake heirloom whole grain breads to sell at farmers market (to supplement my retirement income). Bread is the one constant comfort in my life, the aroma, the feel, the taste. I am now ready to try and move from “feel” to precise measurement of ingredients and temperature so that my results will be reproducible and a consistent saleable product. This book sounds like the primer that I need.
Thank you for sharing this post.
I’m so glad you bought the instant read thermometer. You will be glad you made the investment. I hope you are able to find a way to turn your passion for bread making into an income source. Lionel’s book will be very helpful in learning to create the Artisan breads that would sell well at Farmers’ Markets.
I wish you the best in your new endeavor!