Sunday, February 12, 2006

Great Harvest Bread

"The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight." - M. F. K. Fisher

I've discovered a wonderful source of bread - a place called Great Harvest Bread Co. They mill their own "high protein Montana spring wheat " into flour each morning and make each loaf by hand. The bread is incredibly fresh tasting and dense. These loaves weighs around 2 lbs each. I haven't been to the bakery itself (5800 College Avenue, Oakland, CA), but a very nice English guy named David sells their bread at our local farmer's market. Most of the bread is vegan.
I'm addicted to one called Dakota, a nutty whole wheat bread with sunflour, poppy, and sesame seeds. Looking at the bread, you'd think the nutty seediness would be OTT (over the top), but it's actually mild and pleasant and there's no hard bits to hurt or surprise. Toasted with Irish butter - this is bread heaven.

I was heartbroken to get to the market too late for the fabulous cinnamon chip bread this week. This bread is lighter, a combo whole wheat and white flour bread with a generous sprinkling of giant cinnamon chips. My kids (who are finicky) ate half this loaf plain the first afternoon. Needless to say, I've asked David to reserve me a Dakota and Cinnamon chip for next week.

However, when one door closes, another opens. I decided we'd try the Rockridge Crunch.
Unlike the Dakota and Cinnamon Chip which are sliced, this is a round unsliced loaf with juicy raisins and cranberries, sunflour seeds, oats, dates, and pecans. The nuts are minimal and the raisins and cranberries plentiful, which made this a winner for me. Again, a lighter whole wheat/white flour combination bread. David recommends it toasted with cream cheese - yum!


Blogger farmgirl said...

How fitting that I popped over here from Becks & Posh and landed on a post about bread! I LOVE bread and am actually in the (slow but steady process) of building a small wholesale artisan bread bakery on my farm. In the meantime, I'm working on perfecting my recipes (and eating the results of course). You can't buy good bread in rural Missouri. This former Marin girl missed her sourdough so much she was forced to learn how to make it herself! : )

Congratulations on your new blog. I look forward to reading more. Best of luck to you.

11:16 AM  
Blogger Cyndi said...

I ALSO came here from Beck's & Posh--and my taste buds really want some of that bread! I've had to cut back on bread, but when I do eat it, it's usually my own homemade quickbreads. No yeast breads--no time to make them, so I really miss them. I envy you being able to get all those wonderful ones you've described.

4:04 PM  
Blogger Alanna said...

Watch out for those little cinnamon chippies -- as I recall, they're hydrogenated fat (crisco) with cinnamon. Tasty, agreed! There's a Great Harvest in my neighborhood too, watch for the cranberry orange and Swedish rye. All their breads are on the sweet side but good enough and certainly better than most anything you can buy in a store!

3:33 PM  

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