Written by Chris Young

Chris Young

Chris Young

Crumbs, it’s the 10th annual #RealBreadWeek so (as if you need them) here are ten thirteenths of a baker’s dozen reasons to get doughing.

What’s more delicious and fantastic than Real Bread you’ve baked yourself? Okay, it might not look as pretty as a loaf you buy from an artisan bakery, but how great is it to tear into one you have made yourself with your own mitts?

You’ll get genuinely-fresh, warm, Real Bread that fills your home with a tantalising aroma. Forget those pasty, part-baked things that come out of supermarket loaf tanning salons (do you find they’re stale in about a day?), your bread will smell good enough to sell your house.*

*House sale not guaranteed, though some estate agents suggest you break out a vase of flowers, bake bread and brew coffee before a viewing…

Being creative can give you a great sense of achievement. Crafting can even help some people through bouts of anxiety or depression. What better to craft than Real Bread, which also tastes great?

It’s a great way to impress people, including yourself. Just think, you’ve turned a few base ingredients into a golden loaf. Basically, you’re an alchemist. Doing things for other people is also a way to boost your mental wellbeing.

Bake with other people and you’ll gain yet more wellbeing brownie points. Your fellow flour arrangers could be friends, your kids, an older relative, the local baking club, a total stranger at a baking class on your first date together…

Baking your own Real Bread lets you take control of exactly what does (and, importantly, doesn’t) go into the loaves you eat and feed your family. Want to avoid all of those unpronounceable artificial additives and other E numbers that industrial loaf fabricators use? Don’t want the unnecessary added fats and sugars that some add? Prefer organic, higher fibre or locally milled flour? Want to chuck in a seed, oat and herb combo nobody sells? Bingo!

It’s a cheap hobby. I mean, how much does some flour, water, yeast and salt cost? Pennies. Buff up your skills on a baking course and you’ll be on your way to crafting the sort of loaves you can currently only get from a genuine artisan baker.

Because you haven’t got a genuine artisan bakery anywhere near you. If you’re lucky enough to have a fab, Real Bread bakery in your neck of the woods, get along and support them so they can continue helping to keep your high street alive…and making those delicious whatyoumacallits you love on Saturdays. If not, BIY – bake it yourself. If you get good, you could even become your local baker by setting up a microbakery in your kitchen or garage.

It’s fun. Squishy, sticky, messy fun. Though if you don’t like goo, get a dough scraper and keep your fingers wet.

Real Bread tastes GREAT! Did I mention that already?

#RealBreadWeek 2018 runs from 24 February to 4 March. Find bakeries, baking courses, events and how to join the Real Bread Campaign for discounts on Real Bread classes, ingredients, equipment and more at www.realbreadcampaign.org