Baking Bread for the GENIUS


Baking Bread for the GENIUS

Nothing beats the wonderful warm aroma of fresh bread baking, filling the house with a sense of comfort and contentment. Have you been wanting to bake bread at home but just haven’t done so? Or are you searching for new ideas, recipes from around the world, and techniques? Either way, Baking Bread for the GENIUS is your fun, down-to-earth guide to baking bread at home.

Author Brandon Cristiano is a chef and culinary consultant who travels the world in a grand cooking adventure—such as baking freshly made pizzas for the Beijing Summer Olympics. Coauthor Bob Gatty is a journalist who has written about food and the food industry for more than thirty years.

Cristiano shares recipes, techniques, and adventures in an entertaining and informative style, spicing things up with outspoken, often humorous, observations formed from growing up in an Italian-food-rich family and from his round-the-world travels. Gatty tosses in a chapter of favorite family recipes.

Baking Bread for the GENIUS begins with the basics: a discussion of the equipment and utensils needed to bake bread in your home kitchen, followed by a chapter on key ingredients and their role in successful bread baking. Then, even before offering a single recipe, the book helps you prepare to get it right from the start. Tips, advice, explanations, and definitions help you clearly understand the process.

The sumptuous recipes are virtually foolproof—just follow the detailed instructions. Unlike many baking books, the recipes are convenient for all readers, whether you’re comfortable with US standard measurements of pounds and ounces or with metric standard measurements of kilograms and grams. Plus there are helpful step-by-step photos.

From quick breads—like cornbread, scones, and biscuits—to loaf breads, a variety of rolls, Chinese steamed buns, and pretzel rolls, every recipe makes it easy for you to achieve delicious perfection. But that’s just the start; many recipes are presented for old-world classics from France and Italy, with their fine, crusty exteriors and delightfully chewy interiors. Want to know how to make crêpes, like the classic crêpe suzette, or the Italian cannelloni? That’s all here, along with advice on what types of pans to use and why. What about the Russian blini, a traditional accompaniment with fine Russian caviar? Cristiano says that the best sandwich-style flatbread he’s ever eaten was a piadina he found in a small shop in Rome. So he shares that recipe with you before moving on to the Caribbean-style roti, another flatbread. There's much more, so be sure to check out the table of contents.

What is more tasty and enjoyable than freshly baked bread, hot from the oven, smeared with butter and jam or dipped in olive oil and grated parmesan? You're going to LOVE Baking Bread for the GENIUS!

Table of Contents

Part 1—Beginnings

Chapter 1—Some Background about Bread
Chapter 2—Equipment and Utensils
Chapter 3—The Basics: The Key Ingredients
Chapter 4—Preparation: Getting It Right from the Start
Chapter 5—Starter Doughs and Preferments

Part 2—Let’s Get Started

Chapter 6—Quick Breads
Chapter 7—Loaf Breads
Chapter 8—Bread Rolls
Chapter 9—Biscuits and Scones

Part 3—Old-World Classics

Chapter 10—From Italy to France
Chapter 11—Focaccia
Chapter 12—Ciabatta and More
Chapter 13—Sourdough Bread

Part 4—From Italy to China and Points Between

Chapter 14—Crêpes
Chapter 15—Flatbreads
Chapter 16—Youbing
Chapter 17—Pizza
Chapter 18—Breadsticks

Part 5—The Original Fast Food

Chapter 19—Stuffed Breads
Chapter 20—Pastry Doughs
Chapter 21—The Sweeter Side of Baking

Part 6—Bread Rising, Cookies Baking

Chapter 22—Specialty Breads and Loaves
Chapter 23—Cookies and Such
Chapter 24—Old-Time Tastes
Conclusion—Bon Appétit!

About the Authors

Brandon Cristiano is a chef and culinary consultant who travels the world pursuing his career (and adventures). Influenced by his mom and grandmother, both outstanding Italian cooks and bakers, he graduated from the International Culinary College in Baltimore, Maryland.

From line cook to sous chef, chef de cuisine to executive chef, Brandon has worked in Maryland; Washington, DC; Colorado; Wyoming; Arizona; and Beijing, China. During his ten years in Beijing, Brandon worked as a restaurant chef and also managed production for a company producing freshly made pizzas for the Beijing Summer Olympics.

Today, Brandon consults for restaurateurs both in the United States and abroad. His mother, Jackie, works with him executing recipes and baking bread, rolls, and desserts. Part 6 provides a selection of her special recipes to be shared with you.

Bob Gatty has written about food and the food industry for more than thirty years. He is founder of G-Net Strategic Communications, an editorial services company that works with national trade associations and business publications. His articles have appeared in such industry magazines as Progressive Grocer, Grocery Marketing, Convenience Distribution, Snack World, Snack Food & Wholesale Bakery, Baking and Snack, and many more.

Bob’s journalism experience includes daily newspapers, a national wire service, and two congressional offices. Tired of politics, he launched G-Net and focused on his twin passions, writing and food. Bob is also a For the GENIUS acquisitions editor.

What Are GENIUS Books?

Though we admit to a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun in referring to our readers as geniuses, we do in fact think highly of them! We know that they are intelligent and knowledgeable about many subjects, just not necessarily on the subject of the For the GENIUS book they’ve just picked up. They know that, despite the title, our books are for pretty much everyone, not just “Einsteins”—though even some Einsteins will enjoy our books, too!

We celebrate the fact that our readers are inspired to learn a subject enough to pick up one of our books, which in turn inspires us to ensure, through plenty of perspiration at every step, excellence in producing them.

Readers will enjoy the fun, upbeat, and first-person writing style. They will even find themselves entertained by the occasional sprinkled-in humor, and look forward to sidebars that enhance the discussion.

Though written in a conversational first-person style, GENIUS books are thorough and authoritative treatments of the subject. They are written by top experts in the subject who want to share with others what they’ve learned.

The For the GENIUS series was created by CharityChannel, a community of nonprofit-sector professionals, to offer the world something different and not always on a nonprofit topic. Enjoy!