Friday, January 11, 2013

Best Buy: Arbutus Artisan Bread

If we look at our daily routine; on average we enjoy two slices of toast for breakfast, enjoy another two slices of bread in our lunchtime sandwich and perhaps even two more slices for tea. It is fair to say that bread makes up a significant proportion of our daily diet. Yet, when most people take a trip to the supermarket they reach for the family favourite white industrial sliced pan - which is filled with unnecessary additives and preservatives.

In recent times, there has been a welcomed trend in the nations movement towards real bread - baked the traditional time honoured way in bakeries not using any artificial additives or preservatives. Artisan bakers instead use fresh yeast or natural starter cultures, long natural fermentation usually involving an over-night rising and quality flours to bake each and every handcrafted loaf.

The rise in artisan bakeries across the country is growing at a steady pace, while in Cork leading artisan baker Declan Ryan of Arbutus Bakery is at the forefront of this real bread movement. Every weekend at Midleton Farmers' Market, Declan sets up stall and is met with a long queue of customers eagerly waiting to buy Arbutus legendary loaves. Arbutus Bread stock a range of breads including; Irish soda breads, white yeast breads, sourdough, and spelt yeast breads to name but a few.

Declan uses flours including; organic French flour and traditional stone-ground Irish flours with no chemical improvers or additives. Arbutus bread has recently moved into supplying multiples including; SuperValu in Grange and can be found every Thursday at Mahon Point Farmers' Market. A full list of stockists can be found here.

Declan is one of many talented, hard working and passionate artisan bakers in Ireland. Other artisan bakers include; Arun-Bakery, Blazing Salads, Bretzel Bakery, Paris Bakery, Firehouse Bakery, Diva Bakery Kinsale.