I love listening to podcasts whilst I do other things and my favourite, of course, are those related to bread. I have been listening to a few these past few weeks that I think you might like to listen to as well. So if you are cleaning the house, weeding the garden or sitting in your comfiest chair then take a listen to one of these bread podcasts.
Rock and Roll Farming Podcast
Will Evans is a farmer that interviews other farmers about how the motivation behind their farming practices. Recently he interviewed Mark Lea, an organic farmer in Shifnal, Shropshire. Many of you will know already that I use Mark’s wonderful wheats in my home mill to make the most delicious freshly milled bread. This podcast dives into why Mark and his wife Liz decided to turn their backs on conventional farming and go organic. It is a lovely and moving listen especially when you hear how they were motivated by the arrival of their very special son, Edward. When he was born with Down’s syndrome their perspective on life changed and any fear that they might have had before disappeared and motivated them to live the life they really wanted to live and to make a difference. You can take a listen to the episode here https://rockandrollfarming.libsyn.com/diversity-is-everything.
Mark’s Wheat Walk on YouTube
This one is not a podcast, (sorry to mislead you), but if that interview has whet your appetite then hop across and watch Mark talk about this year’s wheat harvest. Thankfully, he was able to get his wheats in before the awful recent weather. Wheat prices are set to rise significantly this year because the harvest has been so awful. The very hot April and May followed by the wet and windy months since has seen the worst wheat harvest in the UK for forty years, so we are in for a rocky ride as bakers this next year. However, Mark’s wheat are safely in the barn and he has some wonderful varieties this year. Take a look at the wheats when they were still standing in the field https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tms4zL8uJSo
Flour Power: Meet the Bread Heads Baking a Better Loaf
This one dates back to October last year but it is definitely worth a listen as it talks about how farmers, millers and bakers are working together to make better bread. This is even more important with this year’s harvest.
The podcast talks about the legacy of Martin Woolfe, a wheat breeder who developed a resilient wheat population called Wakelyns YQ (Mark grows this one too) and how key players are working together to build a strong local grain economy, getting away from baking with the nameless wheat in a bag to baking with a grain that you can trace back to the field. This is one of my favourite things to do and it can really make a difference to your appreciation of the loaf you have made when you can name the grain and name the farmer that grew the grain, and if you aren’t milling it yourself, then knowing who milled it too. https://www.theguardian.com/news/audio/2019/oct/28/flour-power-meet-the-bread-heads-baking-a-better-loaf
What’s the yeast doing inside my bread?
If you want to hear about yeast and how it works in your loaf and beyond then this podcast is worth a listen. It’s fascinating, yeast is miraculous and research is showing that it can potentially save the planet. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/w3cszv62
If you want bread advice then Stella Culinary can help. If you start with the Four Pillars of Bread and work from there you won’t go far wrong. Looking for a deeper dive into the science around bread? Then take a listen to Modernist Breadcrumbs.
My regular podcast listening:
I want to share the bread podcasts that I listen to on a regular basis. My favourite listen is Mark Dyck’s Rise Up podcast. Mark used to have a bakery in Canada and now interviews other bakers to understand what motivates and drives them. It’s a great listen.
In a similar vein Mike Hilburn interviews bakers for his Sourdough Podcast.
BBC The Food Programme & The Food Chain
If you have an interest in food then there are lots of episodes of the BBC’s Food Programme and The Food Chain available for you to listen to.
Farmerara is an excellent podcast that is well worth listening too and they have several podcasts on the subject of regional grain economies. A great place to start is their series on Cereals. You can find their podcast here.