Wretched Excess Dept: A Loaf of Bread for $30


Image from Hobbs House Bakery

We love our daily bread. But celebrities must love it even more, for this one costs a lot of dough: £21 (that's $30 US). When Liz Hurley, Damien Hirst and Prince Charles are all eating it for breakfast and others are ordering it online to the tune of 100 a week, one has to be a little bit curious to know what it tastes like.

It's organic and local and artisanal, all those yummy words. And apparently...it's "a thing of beauty, dark brown, nutty and slightly salty." Damn.
Image from Mail Online

It's made at a bakery in Gloucestershire from a recipe that has been in the family for more than half a century. Called the Shepherd's Loaf, it takes two days to make.

The flour is made from locally grown organic spelt. The sea salt used has been harvested in the far west of Cornwall since the Iron Age and the Cotswold water is from a local spring. The sourdough has been cooking away for 55 years. It weighs 4.4 lb. and it should last a while week, although it is best on day 3. And there is an image of a shepherd's crook on top. The bread has been rated "Highly Commended" at the Soil Associations Organic Food Awards 2009.

The baker, and creator, Tom Herbert is serious about his work. He has been in the family kitchen since he was 16 and has been on a mission to bake the perfect loaf. He met up with archaeologists to learn how early peoples might have baked bread and visited medieval water mills in his search for the perfect recipe.


Image from Hobbs House Bakery

The baker says "I've used the best possible ingredients so they're also the most expensive,' he says. 'But I don't believe I could make it cheaper without compromising the process or the quality."

The bakery is holding a bread making course, so perhaps he will be teaching some of the tricks of the trade there. Otherwise, it's on line and a 3 day wait to taste it.

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Tags: Cooking | Diet | Local Food | Recipes

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