Blog

The Sourcer-ess & the Rye Farmers - A Modern Fairytale

Posted on Tue, 07/17/2018 - 1:01pm

The Source-ress & the Rye Farmers - A Modern Fairytale 

By Hailey Schurr, Zingerman’s Bakehouse

Sourcing our ingredients locally has many benefits, not least of which is literal field trips to visit our future ingredients as they grow. To this end, one June morning a contingent of the bakehouse grain commission headed west to Living Earth Farm in Sawyer, Michigan where rye is being grown for us this season. I think rye is delicious and I know our customers agree, many using our rye breads as staples in their diet each week and famously enjoying it on sandwiches at Zingerman’s Delicatessen. However, this ancient grain took a major back seat to wheat in the 1900’s when very fluffy and sweet breads became more popular. Now, though relatively easy to grow, particularly good for the soil, and hearty under a variety of weather conditions, rye is used primarily as a cover crop to improve the soil in between main crop seasons and is typically not harvested for food in the United States. Because it is no longer widespread in our state, it is necessary to work directly with farmers to access these grains whole, fresh, and from Michigan. The rye growing at Living Earth Farm is a special departure from today’s typical baking and farming and I’ve been looking forward to seeing its progress for months.

Bakehouse Grain Commission Convenes

Posted on Tue, 06/19/2018 - 10:59am

 In the last six months at the Bakehouse, we’ve started to delve deeply into the world of grains – locally grown, ancient varieties, freshly milled, and more non-wheat varieties. Behind the scenes we’ve been doing research and recipe testing that will become more visible over the coming months. Get ready! Over the next few years we’ll be sharing a lot of information about grains from stories about local farmers to milling information, to how to use them in baking and cooking. You’ll see new breads and pastries from us and evolutions of some of our classics incorporating our new knowledge and preferences. We’re excited and we hope you’ll find it interesting and tasty, too.

Comfort Me With Bread

Posted on Wed, 03/21/2018 - 2:11pm

by Hazim Tugun, Bakehouse

Smells, more than anything else, can stir up strong and usually fond memories from my childhood, mostly associated with food. I cherish that. Growing up as a little kid, I would eat a bowl of warm milk for breakfast with pieces of white bread and sugar, turning into a sweet, comforting mush. I loved it. When I started working at the Bakehouse and took on the daily tasting of the breads, the aroma of Paesano reminded me of the initial stages of that warm bowl of milk and bread from my childhood.

Mandelbread: The Cookie Underdog

Posted on Tue, 02/06/2018 - 9:53am

By Sara Whipple, Zingerman’s Bakehouse

Maybe I'm a sucker for underdogs (if it's possible for a cookie to be an underdog—they're all winners in my book!). But for reasons I can't understand, in all my years of baking and selling food for Zingerman's Bakehouse mandelbread has never been that popular. It's at the top of my go-to list for a snack or a gift!

The Tahini Invasion

Posted on Thu, 01/11/2018 - 11:07am

By Amy Emberling
Zingerman’s Bakehouse co-owner, author & baker
 

You may wonder how we come up with new baked goods—it’s one of the most common questions our guests ask. What seems like a simple question actually has a complicated answer…creativity can be a pretty messy process. Sometimes we discover an ingredient that is especially good and we try to figure out how to use it. That’s what happened with Tohum tahini.