The Bread Doctor

artisan bakery in Torrington, Wyoming
January 31, 2014

Miracles, Madness…..and Magic

Really, baking bread is a miracle with a little bit of magic.  When you consider that you are trapping air bubbles in a matrix of protein and water (gluten), it is a miracle that anything is more than a piece of leather when it comes out of the oven. But gluten is very adept at trapping the air and even letting you knead and shape it in various ways.  In the last few weeks, I have been test baking Schneken (German brioche rolls), TBD (The Bread Doctor) Sourdough, and Russian Black Bread.  All are very different doughs, but start with flour, water, salt and yeast.  Here are some photos of the finished products:

TBD Sourdough

Russian Black Bread

Schneken made from Brioche

 I had a sale of Russian Black Bread this week and had orders for 51 loaves.  I am very pleased with the flavor and texture of the bread, although my teacher’s loaves were darker when we made them in school.  My son, Andrew, states that the Schneken rolls are his favorite pastry.  They have an Amarena cherry in the middle which is a very delicious and unique flavor.  I had never tasted one before baking school.  The sourdough bread is made from a wild starter that I made when we lived in Salt Lake City going to medical school over 20 years ago.

Here is a photo of the outside of the kitchen remodel that we are anxiously awaiting, and the madness is just beginning.  The laundry room under the kitchen is out of commission, and Lisa is at the laundromat weekly.  We soon will be looking forward to days of microwave meals from our dining room or something similar when they knock out the kitchen walls and gut it to make the old room and new rooms one…..more madness.

Now, for a bakery update.  During December, I met with the local planning commission to get a conditional use permit.  This was needed in order to build a commercial kitchen in my garage, which is the next project after the kitchen remodel.  This will allow me greater freedom in what I can offer from the shelves of The Bread Doctor: cream puffs, cheesecakes, cream pies, chicken pot pies and the like.  This was a great step towards getting the home bakery up and running.  As a result, I have been shopping for bread ovens and will get one in about two weeks!  I should be able to bake several (10-15) loaves at once, which will speed up production and allow me to offer more than one item at each sale in the bakery.  This will be an exciting advancement in the course of the business. I have decided to continue to market most of my bread baking products online, through internet ordering on my Facebook page or website (  I hope to  be able to increase my offerings to 2-3 times per month after the oven is in place and all of the commercial kitchen details are worked out.  The adventure has been a hectic ride, but the baking is fun and magical, and the creative rewards are well worth it.  Keep tuned to the blog for future updates.  I have had several sales here in Torrington that have met with good reviews, so I feel that I am producing a good product.