Bread Revolution by Peter Reinhart

The Bread Revolution is a difficult book to review simply because it is definitely something intended for the very serious cook/chef (which I am not). You’ll need to have a good cooking/culinary background and be willing to spend a lot of money and time to find the ingredients/materials/tools and then make the distinct breads. For some, it is a labor of love. For others, it is a profession. But for the casual hobbyist, this book could be very daunting.

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Contents: A large chunk of the recipes are for sprouted flours. Then there are sections on whole grains/whole milling and ‘new bread frontiers’ including grape skin flour and probiotein lean bread.  Recipes include:  sprouted whole wheat muffins, whole wheat currant pretzels, high extraction pain au levain, grape skin flour crackers, sprouted wheat croissants, and many more.  There are quite a few recipes with many different types of bread items – from bagels to crackers to muffins. There is a very academic discussion about grains in the beginning and then resources on where to get the specialty items at the end.

A lot of the book is a discussion about where artisan breads are going and the author’s thoughts about the ‘gluten free’ and Wheat Belly phenomenons.  He discusses the health benefits and problems with the various bread products and why the recipes in this book are different.

Those looking to really understand grains will find this book very informative. The author treats bread making as a never ending educational endeavor of continuous improvement and reinvention. And as fascinated by the whole world of breadmaking as he is, it may not necessarily translate to the readers as a similar fascination.

So yes, the book is very well done, very informative, and presents bread in a way that I’ve never seen broached. But was I inspired to try any of the recipes in here? Unfortunately, no. A lot of this went over my head. Also problematic was the digital version had very small type that was nearly impossible for me to read, even on my computer. I would suggest the hard copy for those interested in purchasing Bread Revolution.

Reviewed from an ARC.

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