Real Bread Week: Doughing it for the kids
Real Bread Campaign coordinator Chris Young says when it comes to making bread, Real Bread Week is a great time to start.
Mmm, Real Bread. The smell, the taste. It’s just great, isn’t it?*
You probably don’t need me to convince you of just how great it is to tear into freshly-baked Real Bread, hear the crackle of its crust, take in its aroma and bite into its chewy, delicious crumb.
But what about your little ‘un? Well happily, official advice is that most babies can eat bread from about six months. When they’re that young, you’ll probably need to mush it up, but once they’re onto finger foods, they can have it as is or maybe even lightly toasted. As we’re talking about Real Bread (by which we mean made without any artificial additives), rather than factory loaves, you’ll want to cut those crispy crusts off to eat yourself – they make great scoops for dipping.
How much more satisfying is Real Bread when you’ve baked it yourself? If you have a baby, the added advantage of BIY is that you can cut out the salt.
Once your little bless is older, they can join in the baking fun. Whether you take children along to a baking class or pass the skills on yourself, Real Bread Week is an ideal time for nippers to get their digits doughy to discover the delicious delights of Real Bread. Just think of their (and even your) wonder at the alchemy of it: the process of taking three or four simple and not exactly delectable ingredients, coaxing them into life and transforming them into a mouthwatering, golden loaf is little short of magical.
If you’re lucky enough to have an independent Real Bread bakery near you, then the week is also a great time to give some extra love to the craftspeople supporting more jobs per loaf locally and helping to keep your high street alive.
The rise of the machines
Back to the baking, you might not feel you can make time every week to bang out a loaf, digging out an unloved bread machine (or adopting one from someone else’s kitchen cupboard) is an alternative way to very affordable loaves. Okay, so not as much fun as baking by hand, but you still get to control exactly does (and, importantly, doesn’t) go into your family’s food.
However you choose to slice it, you can find a basketful of events, classes, recipes, a school baking guide, plus aprons and t-shirts for Real Bread Week and beyond on the Campaign’s website. That’s also the place to find details of how to join the Campaign and in return enjoy a range of discounts on ingredients, classes, equipment and more.
The 10th annual Real Bread Week runs from 24 February to 4 March 2018.
*The right answer is ‘yes’, by the way…