by Josey Baker
So You've always wanted to try your hand at baking bread but were afraid it would be too complicated. I know, all that kneading and rising can be intimidating, and don't even get me started on the sensitive nature of yeast. Well, Josey Baker starts you out slow and shows you how easy it can be. He gives you step-by-step instructions with lots of photos and even has troubleshooting tips for when things don't turn out quite as planned. All you need to create your first loaf are bread flour, yeast, salt, water, and time. No fancy tools, no special oven, special pans, or baking stones. The one item I would suggest, if you don't already have it, is an instant read thermometer. I find the thermometer most helpful in getting the correct water temperature for the yeast.
The recipes in the book are referred to as lessons. It starts out with the most simple and basic bread then each lesson builds on the previous one. He even gets into making your own sourdough starter. If you have never tried sourdough bread you are missing out on a real treat. It is my favorite type of bread for everyday. It has a chewy crust and toasts up to be nice and crunchy.
Other books to interest you:
Tartine Bread by Chad Robertson
Classic Sourdoughs: A Home Baker's Handbook by Ed Wood
A Passion for Bread: Lessons From a Master Baker: 7 Steps to Making Great Bread by Lionel Vatinet