Eric & Denyce’s Excellent Breadventure

Life got particularly good for us a few months ago when we paid a visit to The School of Artisan Food in Nottinghamshire England. Nestled in Sherwood Forest (yes, that one) we found a bit of artisan food heaven. It was pure joy and a privilege to spend time with Emmanuel Hadjiandreou, veteran baker and author of How to Make Bread, and the rest of the talented staff.

The school offers an extensive course of study for those who want to make baking their profession, plus day or weekend workshops for home bakers who seek to improve their skills. The School of Artisan Foods has an illustrious staff of masters in their particular craft, be it baking, brewing, butchering, chocolate or cheese making. They have gathered the best in their fields from around the globe to ensure that these important food production skills are kept alive and vibrant.

Besides providing instructions in their varied disciplines, the school features an onsite brewery, The Welbeck Abbey Brewery, Stichelton Dairy and cheese making facility, and The Welbeck Bakery, a production bakery that supplies the nearby community with fresh baked crusty artisan breads and handmade pastries.

I’ll be forever grateful to Emmanuel and the school for their warm hospitality and generosity. Emmanuel is the kind of guy who would give the shirt off his back to a person in need. I know this first hand as I left a bag with my clothes on the Underground train in London where we met up with Emmanuel. Fortunately, we’re about the same size and I recovered my bag intact on the way home, so it all worked out.

Thanks to Denyce for the fine editing and narration job for this video tour.



Starting today, March 15, 2012buy $40 worth of products from our store and get a FREE party favor…
One free package of a LIMITED SUPPLY of high quality Wheat Montana whole grain cereals and various flours.

[*We also have some packs of unground whole grain available for those with grain grinders. Type "Grain Mill" in the Comments box during checkout if you would prefer whole grain berries rather than milled flour or cereal.*]

We’ll keep this offer going until we run out of gifts.

Celebrate Eric’s birthday by eating healthy bread.

…this message posted by Denyce… and approved by Eric ;)

Happy Breaday


We’re going to be teaching live and interactive bread baking classes for beginners on Powhow starting in March. Powhow is a very cool new website for live how-to classes using your webcam. The vision of the company is to enable anybody to teach and share their passions with anyone around the world.

Currently classes can accomodate up to 12 students. That number will increase to 20 soon. Last week we ran a test class with a couple of folks at Powhow, Ben and Rachel. I had a blast and more importantly, Ben and Rachel turned out some awesome bread with little or no prior bread baking experience.

There is normally a (relatively nominal) charge for taking classes on Powhow but our first two classes will be free while I get accustomed to how it all works. I don’t have the times and dates of the free classes yet but if you or someone you know, who is a beginning bread baker, is interested in taking a class, please use the contact link at the top of this page to let me know. When I get the details nailed down, I’ll send out an email and see how quickly we get 12 people signed up.

Attendees will need high speed internet access and a webcam on their computer. We’ll cover the bread baking tools and ingredients needed in the email.

Rachel used all King Arthur Bread Flour in this beauty

Ben's bread is made from a mix of white and whole wheat flour


Just before Thanksgiving, my wife Denyce and I were lucky enough to be invited to merry old England to meet with and video award-winning artisan baker, Emmanuel Hadjiandreou. We filmed him non-stop for three days at the School of Artisan Foods in Nottinghamshire where he now teaches. Emmanuel made wheat breads, barm breads, rye breads, sourdough starters, holiday breads, puff pastry, croissants and other recipes from his recent book, “How to Make Bread.” When we get done editing and organizing the huge volume of info, you will be seeing the videos here on Breadtopia over the coming months. It was an amazing ride, and we came back inspired to say the least.

With the holidays immediately upon us, we decided to try to tackle his award-winning stollen. (Right, something simple.) Denyce chronicles the venture here. Part 1 of the Stollen Chronicles is how we made made marzipan stollen. Enjoy, and Happy 2012!

The Poppyseed and Marzipan Stollen that Emmanuel made for us in the UK.