…And Now For Something Completely Different!

Confession time: this post contains no sandwiches. Nor does it contain any bread. Fillings neither. Not even any gardening.

What it does have, is my cousin, who is the best guitar player I know. It bears mentioning that I am a semi-professional musician, and have met, seen, heard, some world class musicians in my time.

Why am I going on about this? He’s just released a video, to go along with his new record contract, of him covering a song you may have heard. If you like it, maybe you could share it via whichever of your networks you choose. Heck, even if you don’t like it.

Anyway, enough familial bias and musical gushery. I give you: Mike Dawes!

You can buy the single, as well as the guitar tab, here.

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Doughy Daydreams: Could I Go Dough-Pro?

For a variety of reasons I won’t bore you with, I haven’t worked since August of last year (besides a couple of agency shifts). I have found baking, and blogging about baking, to be a tremendously beneficial activity in giving the long, empty days a sense of purpose and achievement. At the risk of turning this into an open-journal therapy session, there have been times when I needed a boost to my mood, and baking has provided it in spades.

I have been looking for work, unsuccessfully, since the beginning of the year, and have begun to lose hope of finding anything suitable, especially considering that, long-term, I know what I want to do (Music Therapy) and am 2/3 of the way through the three year MA that will allow me to do it (though on a hiatus). But in the mean time, I need to earn some money, and even when I’m qualified, I am unlikely to begin working as a therapist full-time over night. I’ll be piecing together freelance work from therapy, music teaching, etc.

Like many, I’m sure, the thought of earning money from my bread-headed obsession has crossed my mind more than a few times. Continue reading

Hamelman Video Tutorials: Learn From a Master

I was idly hypothesising about how one might slash the dough of a baguette to achieve the characteristic tear, when it struck me that this here internets would probably hold the answer. Well done internets; you did me proud. These videos are comprehensive, and come from a name I’ve come to trust: Jeffrey Hamelman. Serious skills. Videos after the break. Continue reading

Bake-Along Business: Mellow Bakers & #ShortandTweet

I wrote this a short while ago, and somehow failed to publish it. Ahead of my upcoming post about my first mellow bakers loaf, I thought I’d let it out of its hiding place, for the linky goodness if nothing else! Needless to say, I am still somehow running out of time, despite ample supply.

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My brief foray into group baking was something I enjoyed very much, but haven’t quite managed to recreate. I had fully intended to make a batch of pita bread along with the folks over at #ShortandTweet, but ran out of time. Since then, I have been incredibly busy (especially for a jobless wonder) and very low on energy. But April marks the beginning of a new bake along, one to which I fully intend to apply myself as fully as possible.

The Mellow Bakers are working their way through “The Handmade Loaf”, the very book that got me started on serious bread baking. I intend to bake and blog each loaf so long as I’m able, and also try and cook up a sandwich recipe for those that inspire me. I’m really looking forward to learning from my fellow bakers, and have already been in touch with some very friendly sorts.

They are also baking through another book, “Bread” by Jeffrey Hamelman. So if you fancy joining in, pick your poison, and jump in! I’m a relative newby and everyone’s been dead friendly, and there’s a real range of abilities, including some people who have baked it all before and/or are schooled in such things.

Chuffing Heck! It’s the Fabulous Baker Brothers!

As if to illustrate that, before I’ve even begun, I am lagging behind the Zeitgeist, desperately chasing the bandwagon shouting “Wait up guys, lemme jump on”, a new show featuring a baker (and butcher) from my home county (Gloucestershire, since you asked) starts tomorrow at 8:30pm on Channel 4.  I shall be watching, and probably baking a fair few of the recipes. Join me!

The Fabulous Baker Brothers – Features – Meet the Fabulous Baker Brothers – Channel 4.