SLOW RISE: A BREAD-MAKING ADVENTURE
BBC Radio 4 ‘Book of the Week’, 1-5 March 2021
‘A wide-ranging, gloriously obsessive odyssey . . . a wonderful insight into the history, culture and sheer hard work taken to make this most fundamental of human foods. This book reminds us of bread’s special significance and importance’ Jenny Linford, author of The Missing Ingredient
Over the course of a year, Robert Penn learns how to sow, harvest, thresh and mill his own wheat, in order to bake bread for his family. In returning to this pre-industrial practice, he tells the captivating story of our relationship with bread: from the domestication of wheat in the Fertile Crescent at the dawn of civilization, to the rise of mass-produced loaves and the resurgence in home baking today.
Drawing on the wisdom of farmers and traditional bakers from around the world – from the Welsh mountains to the Great Plains of the USA – Penn reconnects the joy of making and eating bread with a deep appreciation for the skill and patience required to cultivate its key ingredient. This timely reminder of the real cost of great-tasting bread celebrates the everyday miracle of an ancient craft.
‘People keep rediscovering the joy of bread. In truth it never went away; it was just subverted by pappy cheaper bread . . . Robert Penn celebrates what we can do to reverse this culinary serfdom’ Tim Lang, author of Feeding Britain