Bread. It’s simple stuff made difficult. Most of us can knock up a half-decent loaf with a bit of practice. But, lately, bread’s been given a make-over, as celebrity chefs and boutique bakeries have been trying to reinvent it, rebrand it and repackage it - and as a result, try to turn it into something it’s not. Something fancy, elite and brought out for ‘special occasions’. Bread as a social statement.
We wanted to do something different. We didn’t want to reinvent the wheel. We wanted to give the people of Liverpool a daily loaf that they could rely on.
To bake hundreds of great loaves day in day out is tough. Really tough. A challenge we fail at occasionally as well. There are so many variables, like the air temperature, or the flour harvest, the size of batch you’re making, or just the whims of the bread gods. It’s a constant balancing act, but when you get it right you have bread that is a joy to eat.
Great bread isn’t made in a factory, or on a conveyor belt. It’s made by hand, and eye and intuition. We're still not 100% confident that when we open the oven doors we’ll have a good loaf of bread. I still get excited when I open the doors and find 20 perfect loaves sitting on the deck. Almost makes getting up at 4 AM worthwhile (or 2 AM on busy days). Almost.
We think, like great whisky, or wine, every bakery has its own terroir. Its own distinctive flavour profile. Baltic Bakehouse’s bread is robust, hearty and delicious. It’s soft open crumbs, and dark substantial crusts. Bread that’s worth eating on its own, not just a vehicle for other stuff. Having said that, our sandwich fillings more than meet that challenge. Fill two slices of our bread with great bacon and shove it in your face, it’ll make you happy. See also our UGC: our Ultimate Grilled Cheese’s combo of Comté and mature Cheddar.
What makes a great loaf? Time. Long fermentation of at least ten hours results in bread that is tasty, a little tangy, and wonderfully digestible. Quality flour helps too. Mixed and combined in the right proportions for the right time, in the right way and you get a great loaf of bread. Humble, beautiful, nutritious and delicious.
We know great bread won't change the world. But it's not a bad place to start.