Best or favorite bread / sourdough bread cookbooks and why …

And … GO!

  • Posted by: aargersi
  • February 21, 2022


Mary T. February 28, 2022
Sourdough Jack
Published by Mike Roberts Color Productions, Berkeley, CA, 1962

I bought my first copy in Alaska on a trip there in the 70s. I recently bought a new copy on ebay b/c I had worn the first one out. The sourdough biscuits dredged in bacon grease (before baking) are the best!
AntoniaJames February 22, 2022
My first bread book was Beard on Bread (one of my first cookbooks of any kind, actually, a very long time ago). I've since it bought it for each of my bread baking adult sons, and for friends and family over the years. I've checked a lot of bread baking books out of the library over the years, from which i've found one or two recipes per book that I like. The only other bread book that I've bought for myself, and this is one that I highly recommend, for so many reasons, is
"Hot Bread Kitchen." Excellent recipes, interesting narrative / good backstory, lots of variety, so inclusive - everything I look for in a cookbook these days!

For bread baking at altitude (I've sort of had to start over since moving here, at 5,000 feet), no question, Susan Purdy's "Pie in the Sky" - not just about pie, but all baking at altitude, with tables in each recipe showing amounts, temperatures, rack position, baking times, etc. for sea level, 3,000 ft, 5,000 ft, 7,000 ft, and 10,000 ft. A superb resource! ;o).
aargersi February 22, 2022
Thanks AJ! I think I have 3 that I’ll for sure be buying! Incidentally I am RETIRING (!!!) in less than a year and I intend to be a master bread baker in my future!
drbabs February 22, 2022
Wow, aargersi! Baking party in our future!! And I love Hot Bread Kitchen, too, though I don't own it....Hmmm...I may have to remedy that.
aargersi February 22, 2022
Follow up question - how many bread books are too many? 😆
Nancy February 22, 2022
Without knowing more about why you want to set a maximum or over-the-top number, it's hard to say.
Depends on so many things -
* stage of cook in learning to make bread,
* interest in different types (by recipe, by nation, by historical usage),
* whether professional or home cook,
* how much shelf space available, do you nowadays use
* cook's usage nowadays more of books or internet or both
* and so on.
drbabs February 22, 2022
That's a joke, right? Since when do you limit yourself on books? :)
aargersi February 22, 2022
Absolutely tongue in cheek - you know me! When in doubt just cram another bookshelf in somewhere!
Nancy February 23, 2022
Joke's on me.
SInce you have extra space, a few more recommendations.
For general knowledge/another handbook - RLB Bread Bible (like her Cake Bible - full of reliable measurements, variations, good recipes)
For great history and a few recipes, Elizabeth David, English Bread and Yeast Cookery.
For Clayton's, Complete Book of Bread - get any edition, new or used, original or revised, all good, as teaching and reference and recipe source.
aargersi February 23, 2022
It looks like the first year of my retirement will be The Bread Year! 😂
drbabs February 22, 2022
The Bread Baker's Apprentice is my go-to. Lots of science and explanation, plus ratios and recipes that work.
Nancy February 21, 2022
Beard on Bread. Variety, absolute taste and reliability, stories from his life and developing the recipes.
Bernard Clayton's Encyclopedic, teaching methods and differences of each bread.
Also there was an article here in 2020 reporting on best bread book after a survey of members
Nancy February 22, 2022
Stephanie G. February 21, 2022
Tartine, Chad Robertson, the gold standard. Detail and delicious recipes.
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