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Hardcover World Sourdoughs from Antiquity Book

ISBN: 0962269468

ISBN13: 9780962269462

World Sourdoughs from Antiquity

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good

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Book Overview

Traces the history of sourdough bread from its origins in ancient Egypt, and offers a collection of recipes, including sourdough bagels, dinner rolls, pizza crust, and pretzels. This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

World Sourdoughs from Antiquity

In-depth and detailed information and lots of wonderful recipes. Great primer for bread baking!


What an outstanding manual for sourdough baking. I was easily able to capture my own culture, which I have been using now for about 6 months. Dr. Wood fully explains the relationship between yeast and lactobacteria, which I found fascinating. However, most of all I am pleased with the accessibility of the author. He has a website, and I have emailed questions to him twice and each time received a prompt response. The author is an MD/PhD so he knows all about micro-organisms. It is like having a professor of sourdough, with office hours.

Finally! I Get It!

As an experienced, non-professional baker of conventional yeast bread, I'd been mystified by sourdough and the whole rustic bread thing. All my attempts turned out like sandwich bread with CRUST. Ed Wood's first couple of chapters set me straight: it's the lactobacilli (slow multipliers) that create the flavor, and the yeast (fast multipliers) that give it loft. And they both require feeding: just think of your starter as a hungry amorphous pet hanging out in the fridge, and you're on the right track. An article in Cooks Illustrated supplied the other key variable: moisture content (the wetter the dough, the more open the texture). Armed with theory, I ordered a couple of starters from Dr. Moore's web site and, following the instructions in World Sourdoughs, stirred and incubated for a couple of days, then followed the books' most basic recipe, and Whammo! Great sourdough bread! I'm sold. I'm empowered. Cool. Caveat: the previous review is right too, the book assumes you already know a lot about how bread works. For instance, the proportions in some of the recipes are a little suspect to my eye (for instance, how can you keep adding 'another cup of flour' and 'another cup of water' to a 1 quart jar, day after day, and not end up with basically an ocean of starter!? Beginners should begin elsewhere, then come to Dr. Moore for their graduate Sourdough training.

So, THAT'S how it works!

I've been an avid hobbiest baker for over 20 years, and sourdough had always been a frustrating mystery. It didn't work, or it didn't work right, and every article and book I read seemed to have conflicting advice. Even the great James Beard's otherwise wonderful "Beard on Bread" was of no help. (James Beard, despite his many talents, didn't have a clue when it came to sourdough.) I just KNEW that sourdough had to be more workable and reliable, or the commercial bakeries that produce sourdough bread couldn't survive!Ed Wood's book, World Sourdoughs from Antiquity, cleared up the mystery for me. His techniques work, they are understandable, and they don't involve witchcraft or the phase of the moon. While Dr. Woods sells sourdough cultures he has collected from around the world, his techniques will work with any culture, even ones you captured yourself.The book not only tells you how to use sourdough, it explains what it is, gives an interesting history of sourdough, has amusing stories about how Dr. Woods collected the starters he sells, and has a number of very good recipes.As I write this, there are four more loaves of sourdough bread in the oven, and the smell is driving me crazy.... before Ed Wood's book, I hadn't had any real sourdough success!

A synthesis of science and country wisdom

This book has clear instructions and easy traditional recipes. I've baked some of these breads and my neighbors and relatives love them! But this is more than a sourdough bread book. Ed Wood describes amazing experiences including travel to Egypt to assist archaeologists documenting how the pharaohs baked bread. The photos bring scenes of ancient bread-baking to life. Anyone who eats sourdough bread, or loves bread of any kind enough to bake it themselves, will enjoy this book.
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