Feb 182011
The other morning was one of those lovely clean and clear mornings as the sun rose through the early morning mist. I put breakfast on hold and did my garden wander with camera in hand. I thought some of my readers might like to share…

Hazel catkins

Ramsons poking their heads up
Chives sunbathing under honeysuckle & ivy

Hamamelis jelena glorious flowers

Saffron crocus amongst the flowers

Elephant’s Ears survived the snow & frost

Olive modelled by the wind in front of beech

Snowdrops through acer little lamps

Our oak nursery – when big enough they go to the fields

Broad Bean ‘The Sutton’ November sowings now outside

September planted Garlic going well

Cavalo Nero going strong and some spring green to eat

Early Purple Sprouting Broccoli ‘Rudolph’ Star perfomer

At last I hope we’re coming out of the winter’s clutches. It was much harder here than we’ve seen for the last 13 years.

Spring brings new hope for the year ahead. I’ll post more soon about detailed garden plans and events.

Feb 072011

This well designed book is subtitled, ‘The introductory guide to success in baking Real Bread for your local community’.

How well does it fulfill its remit?

How far along the line from interested or amateur baker to community purveyor of Real Bread can ‘Knead to Know’ take you?

In my view, The Real Bread Campaign are to be congratulated. ‘Knead to Know’ delivers on its culinary metaphor of being a:

buffet of tasters with pointers to where you can explore and find out more about the topics you find the most appetising

My view is shaped by my particular needs. As regular readers of the blog and my twitter feed will know, I’m a keen amateur baker. And I’ve had enough good feedback about my bread to wonder about producing bread for the wider community.

So here were the questions I was hoping ‘Knead to Know’ might help me answer.

  • How would I go about setting up such a venture?
  • What are the logistics of baking from home:
  • what’s involved in scaling up domestic recipes?
  • would I manage using a domestic oven?
  • What are the rules & regulations I’d have to be aware of?
  • Were there tips and ideas for promoting the venture?
  • What product mix would be good to start with?
  • How would I work out product pricing and ingredient yield.
  • Where would I go for further information?
  • So how well did it do? Continue reading »

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