Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking


by Jeff Hertzberg MD & Zoe Francois (Authors) and Mark Luinenburg (Photographer) 

"For 30+ brand-new recipes and expanded ‘Tips and Techniques’, check out The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, on sale now.

This is the classic that started it all – Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day has now sold hundreds of thousands of copies. With more than half a million copies of their books in print, Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë François have proven that people want to bake their own bread, so long as they can do it easily and quickly.

Crusty baguettes, mouth-watering pizzas, hearty sandwich loaves, and even buttery pastries can easily become part of your own personal menu, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day will teach you everything you need to know, opening the eyes of any potential baker." (Description from

I know, I usually don't post about non-fiction books but I couldn't help myself. First a little background on me...I was lucky enough to study abroad through Saint Mary's University in Florence, Italy. We actually stayed above Florence in Fisole, Italy at Hotel Villa Bonelli. Three months at the villa with a five star meal every night. Needless to say, I gained 15 pounds from the trip and never, ever ate so good (outside of my mom's kitchen who is also Italian). The bread, oh the bread. It was crunchy and soft and you would dip it in the most amazing olive oil. Honestly, I had dreams about those meals for months after I left. I could never seem to find the right bread that tasted to good and just like I was back in Fisole.

Back to present, I came upon Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day while I was checking books in from the book drop. It intrigued me. Really? Five minutes a day?! My bread maker too all darn day. So, when I'm intrigued with a book, I check it out.

Today, I made the dough which took about 20 minutes and that was for reading and then rereading since I got tablespoon and teaspoon confused. After a quick Google search to correct a measurement mistake, I left the bread sit for two hours. I made three tiny loafs** for dinner and placed the rest of the dough in the fridge. Best part? The dough lasts up to 14 days. I have a feeling we'll run through it before then.

As we sat down to dinner, it was my husband's idea to get the olive oil out. Why not, I thought. Maybe I could pretend to be back in Italy. Imagine my surprise when I dipped my freshly made artisan bread into the oil and took a bite. Oh my goodness! It was like the bread I ate in Italy. Just amazing. I think I might have blanked out there for a few minutes while I was in bread nirvana. The three tiny loafs are gone and so is the olive oil.

I can't wait to make our next batch. I plan on making my own little bobble just for myself to eat alone without sharing. What can I say? It brings back the wonderful memories from my trip to Italy. Now, if only I could find the Bonelli Vineyard wine. That would be perfection for the entire meal and my week.

**Please note that our corn meal was expired so I used plain old flour. It was still amazing and I plan to keep the flour instead of the corn meal. Honestly, why temp perfection at this point?

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