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We’re often asked what we mean by ‘Real Bread’ bakery and what is ‘Real Bread’. The launch of a so-called ‘Digestion Boost Loaf’ this week by Robert’s bakers has prompted me to try to put down on paper and in simple terms, what exactly we mean 😊


In a very small nutshell – being part of the Real Bread Campaign (https://www.sustainweb.org/realbread/) and being passionate about their principles means that we don’t add anything to our loaves that doesn’t need to be there. That doesn’t mean that we can’t add tasty ingredients like nuts, cheese, herbs, olives etc, Real Bread definitely isn’t boring! But it does mean that there’s no improvers or additives which are added to most supermarket loaves.


Whilst we completely understand that sometimes it’s easy to simply chuck a loaf into your supermarket trolley – if you look at the ingredients you’ll see a list which includes the likes of ascorbic acid, various E numbers and emulsifiers, calcium propionate to name just a few! Most of these are added in order to extend the life of the loaf, make it extra fluffy and light or inhibit mould growth, but they certainly don’t sound like something I would personally want to be regularly consuming or feeding to my children. So you might be thinking – well I need that loaf to last me all week for packed lunches and the like, well why not buy a real loaf (have it sliced if it’s easier) and then pop it in the freezer, taking out slices as required to either defrost or toast.


So is the so called ‘Digestion Boost Loaf’ really necessary or a clever marketing campaign? – in our opinion it’s much of the latter, with the important word in this article being ‘preservatives being removed as well as SOME of the additives’.




If you want true digestion boosting then why not opt for a simple sourdough made with nothing other than flour, water, salt and lots of time and love.


If you’d like more info on what’s in any of our products then please do just ask. For more info on the Real Bread Campaign visit https://www.sustainweb.org/realbread/.


Caveat: Whilst everyone has the right to choose to eat Real Bread, that is to say: made without the use of any so-called processing aids or other artificial additives, the current, long-standing mandatory addition of four ‘token’ nutrients to most flour in Britain all but denies us this right. Fortification of the majority of wheat flours with calcium carbonate, iron, thiamin (vitamin B1) and nicotinamide is an ongoing debate and more info can be found at https://www.sustainweb.org/realbread/flour_fortification/

Hi there. This is my first time writing for the blog, it’s nice to see you guys keeping up with us here.

As you know by now, we made the decision to move the bakery out of the shop, this was more work then was ever imagined and harder than me and Jenn both anticipated but with the help of a great team we’ve got there and we are really happy with the results. We are now able to produce more bread to a better quality and a better standard with more consistency than ever before.


It’s been really interesting as a baker to move an operation that was once a small thing into more of a manufacturing site and keep your quality and consistency. For instance - the new bakery is much, much colder than the old one and we have had real problems trying to manage the fermentation of the sourdough properly, this has led to making ferment earlier to allow it the time to develop and become the proper starter for our sourdough. We're also having to leave the sourdoughs out to prove up slightly before they go into the refrigerator.


We now have a large three-phase power supply which has made the ovens run better than ever before which resulted in quite a few burnt sourdough along with other accidents!


Another adjustment has been from moving to a large scale pastry roller as my handcrank one before would be no use for the amount of pastries we now make and learning to laminate on one of those has been challenging

to say the least some days with great success other days with epic failures destined for the bin!! 


 Someone asked me the other day how was it moving and then having Christmas, the only way I can think to describe it was to say it’s like I just moved house got everything out of it and put it in my new house then moved house the day after :-)


Christmas is always hard too because we work really long hours, miss our family a lot but of course we love what we do or we wouldn't do it.


We did make a huge amount of mince pies this year, more sourdough than I ever thought we could sell and loads of new products that you all seem to have enjoyed, from a simple white tin loaf to the more complex pastries that have begun to appear on the counter.


However getting to Christmas Eve following a 28 hour shift from me, Simon doing 18 hour shift and Rachel doing a 15 hour shift just to get everything laminated, shaped, refrigerated, baked, packed and delivered to the shop for 9 AM Christmas Eve morning physically nearly broke us all! 


But of course we are always happy to see a queue out the door with people there to buy real bread and support our little company and I thank every one of you for that.


Some people have said that the soul of our little shop has gone now that the bakery is not in there however the soul was never the oven or the baker or the flour it was the bread and now when I drop it off in the morning after a long night shift, put it all in its individual little crates and see it shine at the centre of the shop I know we have done the right thing, some people will miss us but I’m only up the road in Hadfield and anyone is more than welcome to come and visit us and see where the bread is made.

Now we have a new facility we are able to perfect our craft and improve everything and add new products, all of us as bakers are excited by this prospect.


I’m currently playing around making a new all butter puff pastry for our much awaited savoury and lunch line of products, as much care and attention will be paid to these as everything else is Grains! I look forward to the future and seeing what it holds for us.


I wish you the best for 2019  and I hope you enjoy this first little insight into the new bakery from me.


See you soon,


James


Wowsers 2019 - where did that come from? It certainly snuck up on us I can tell you that. 2018 was a bit of a world-wind, we started the year as business as usual but quickly realised that some big changes needed to be made, moving the bakery wasn't something we'd planned to do after only two years in business but needs must and so the planning began! In the midst of this we also welcomed our third child to the world, Rowan was born in April completing our little family. It has been said a lot that we don't do things by halves, which is true, in for a penny in for a pound! 


So what for 2019? We have lots of exciting plans for new products to fill our shiny new shop - watch this space. But we also hope to be able to share the workload this year with our fantastic team we now have. It's taken some time but we feel we finally have a group of people with a common enthusiasm and love for our business and our products which makes things a lot easier for us :-) 


Finally, a massive thank you to you our customers and supporters for all you've done in 2018, from your crowdfunding pledges, words of support and of course your custom week in week out. There are many people who started out as our earliest customers but we are now so happy to call real friends, you know who you are :-)


Anyway, enough from me, we'll get some more bread and baking related blogging on here this year I promise - as soon as the bakers have time to put pen to paper!




Happy New Year :-) 

and now :-)

Back then!

Teamwork makes the dream work! (Minus Matt who had to play rugby)

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