Local Breads

Local Breads

Sourdough and Whole-grain Recipes From Europe's Bestartisan Bakers

Book - 2007
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When Daniel Leader opened his Catskills bakery, Bread Alone, twenty years ago, he was determined to duplicate the whole-grain and sourdough breads he had learned to make in the bakeries of Paris. The bakery was an instant success, and his first book, Bread Alone, brought Leader's breads to home kitchens. In this, his second book, Leader shares his experiences traveling throughout Europe in search of the best artisan breads. He learned how to make new-wave sourdough baguettes with spelt, flaxseed, and soy at an organic bakery in Alsace; and in Genzano, outside of Rome, he worked with the bakers who make the enormous country loaves so unique that they have earned the Indicazione Geografica Protetta (IGP), a government mark reserved for the most prized foods and wines. Leader's detailed recipes describe every step that it takes to reproduce these rare loaves, which until now were available strictly locally.
Publisher: New York : W. W. Norton, 2007.
ISBN: 9780393050554
0393050556
Characteristics: xii, 353 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 26 cm.

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c
CL_kcls
Apr 04, 2019

Wow. This book.

'Local Breads' is both intimidating and ... accessible. Dan Leader does a beautiful job of giving a bit of history mixed with wonderful detailed explanations and expected outcomes.

I would advise/caution that you read this book slowly and digest the information before moving on. There's a lot of information, none of it extraneous.

I have made the Parisian Daily Bread (Baguette normal) several times and it is wonderful. It's a good place to start on this delcious journey.

Of course, I truly appreciate that the recipes are given in both volume and weights, plus Dan added the measurements in bakers percentages which is awesome.

There are gorgeous photos throughout 'Local Breads'. I only wish they were with the actual recipes.

The recipes, directions and information are by necessity over several pages. That's not my preferred format but as long as you carefully keep your place, it's fine.

On a personal note, Dan Leader has a place in my heart. I had a question . . . so I emailed him. . . and he responded with the answer within 2 hours. That's a good man who cares about how his recipes work for us.

k
KatieKAM
Mar 24, 2019

This is one of the best bread books I have used. The directions are very clear and explain how the dough should feel very well. For example, it explains about wet doughs and why you want them that way and how to handle them, which I found very helpful. I got great results with all the recipes I tried (except for one, but I think I mis-measured the liquid). Really good selection of recipes using rye flour, too, with good pointers on how rye doughs handle differently from wheat. I also liked the information and explanations the author put in about using sourdough starters and how they benefit the breads (I only recently started using a sourdough starter, so the information was helpful to me).
I didn't use a baking stone or peel (don't have them) and I don't see any reason to get one, as fermenting the doughs on a baking sheet and putting the sheet in the oven worked just fine for me -- got a great crust and oven spring.
I saw other comment about how long some of the recipes take, but the flavors they yield are tremendous (the length is due to natural fermentation, not due to active involvement).
I will be buying a copy of this to keep.

b
bfriedman
Aug 29, 2017

The errata for this book can now be found at:

http://web.archive.org/web/20101019043442/http://breadalone.com/PDF/local-breads-corrections.pdf

d
Danielle KIESMAN
Oct 29, 2015

Like other reviews this book is not for you if you are hoping to eat a loaf of bread within 4 hours. There are a few quick and easy recipes. However, most of the recipes require a baking stone as well. Not quite the book i was looking for.

e
Ebflat4
Apr 30, 2014

I'd been experimenting with sourdough for a while, and I also have his earlier book Bread Alone. In some ways this seems a more practical approach for the home baker. All sorts of wonderful European breads. Now if I could just convince my other half to eat them. . . Trying to get him unstuck from his white sourdough rut!
I'm going to buy the book too.

j
JDC
Dec 01, 2013

I have read a lot of bread books, but this was one of the better ones. Lots of information and great recipes. I am going to buy this one. Another person noted that there are a few corrections to some of the recipes, and they can be found here: http://www.breadalone.com/PDF/local-breads-corrections.pdf

j
JLMason
Apr 16, 2011

Excellent book for learning about sourdoughs and traditional European breads.
Explains the chemistry behind bread making.
Easy, repetitive instructions.
Multiple measuring methods(metric, imperial, weight).

I bought the book!

m
mcvallet
Jul 22, 2010

loved this book so much I went to buy it after borrowing in a couple of times at the library. I tried a few recipes from the book and they where all a success the first time I made them. If you want to make bread quickly thought, I don't think this book is for you. There are a couple of fast recipes, but I have not tried them yet.
You should note that there is an errata for a couple of recipes that can be found here http://www.breadalone.com/PDF/local-breads-corrections.pdf
I only had problems with the liquid sourdough, but managed to make it after all and I already had a stiff starter from another book.

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