bake - February 2018 - 40


On the Future of Bread
One of the great privileges I've enjoyed while serving as editor

and Recipes" by Hamelman; and the just-published "Breaking

of bake magazine includes the opportunity to participate in

Bread, A Baker's Journey Home in 75 Recipes" by Philip. I

professional baking classes and learn from the very best. More

highly recommend both for the science and artistry in each.

than a decade ago, I took my first baking class where I gained
the skill and knowledge to make braided breads from Jeffrey

Hamelman shares that he is proud to have left King Arthur's

Hamelman, who recently retired as director of the Bakery and

bakery while it functions in top form. He still lives in Vermont

Baking Education Center at King Arthur Flour in Norwich,

and has time now to devote energies to helping food banks

Vermont. This experience forged a great friendship that

and local shelters. Philip is focused on classic baking at King

continues today.

Arthur with a modern twist. Today, he is making spiced honey
bread using whole rye flour, honey, molasses, rum and dried

I returned to Vermont in December to visit bakers, millers and,

apple. Look to the past. Look to the future.

of course, Jeffrey Hamelman. He greeted me with his infectious smile at the cafe inside King Arthur Flour's headquarters

As our conversation turns to the future of whole grains, Philip

one Friday morning, when we toured the bakery and education

cites an issue that he believes matters to the development of

center and proceeded to catch up on all things related to our

the artisan bread movement. "The pursuit of just whole wheat

favorite topic: bread.

is just another fad. We are not going to have success in the
whole grain movement until we look at things in less binary

To my added pleasure, we were joined in this far-reaching

terms. Part of the issue is nomenclature; we need better ways

conversation by Martin Philip, whose transformative profes-

to communicate what bakers are doing with whole grains."

Arkansas native who studied music at Oberlin Conservatory,

Hamelman steers the conversation to the importance of baker

Philip, later in life, traded a finance career in New York City

skills. "My feeling is that good bakers can make the differ-

for an entry-level baker's position at King Arthur, working his

ence. If you have skill, you can make amazing whole wheat

way up to his current position as head bread baker and bakery

bread with 10% protein flour. Protein is good to know. Knowing

operations manager.

the falling number is even more important. We have to test
the flour. Remember when farmers' markets first started and

As I write this column, baking books authored by both men

people would buy fresh spinach with grit? As the regional grain

rest on my office desk: "Bread, A Baker's Book of Techniques

industry evolves, it could be easily derailed if somebody gets

40 < FEB 2018 |


sional career has taken him from opera to finance to baking. An

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of bake - February 2018