I recently attended a 3-day class at King Arthur Flour in Norwich, Vermont, titled "Survey of Classic French Bread".

I had the privilege of training under two of the best bakers in the industry. Jeffrey Hamelman (right) is a 40-year veteran of the bread baking industry and the Director of Baking at KAF. James MacGuire has equally as many years in the industry and currently works as an independent bread consultant.

The class was attended by all walks of life, which included passionate home bakers, small to medium-sized artisan shop operators, as well as owner/operators of nationally franchised bread shops. I felt at home there and learned quite a lot.
Although the program focused on science and technique, we also had the opportunity to enjoy learning about the history of French bread. James is quite the historian on the subject.
The instructors were very helpful but much of the added value from this type of course is the knowledge shared by other bakers. It is reassuring to know that many bakers struggle with the same challenges as I, and many of their suggestions are finding there way into my routine.
Our hand's-on sessions focused on Pain au Levain, Pain au Levain Pate and Miche. The last day was spent building and baking four different types of baguettes. I am confident that my formula and processes for my baguettes are among the best.
With this added knowledge and experience I will be introducing new products into my bread offering. Keep an eye here, and on the Facebook page for details.
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