Sourdough Companion 11 April 2008

Sourdough Companion 11 April 2008



ABA Newsletter to Artisan Bakers

Organic sourdough at Boonderoo Farm
Thomas unloading organic sourdough at Boonderoo Farm


Dear Baker,

Welcome to the April 2008 edition of Sourdough Companion.

A lot has gone on in early 2008. Whether you are into artisan philosophy, industry politics...or... just want to make damn good bread.

An exciting development is the emergence of 2 day ABA Gatherings. The extra day will give bakers a chance to complete longer fermentaion techniques, such as overnight leavens and retardation.

Gatherings are for home bakers and professional bakers. In particular we are encouraging home bakers to attend and 'partner up' with the many professional bakers that already attend. ABA Members receive a $30 discount on Gatherings and selected events.

See you there,
Graham (Coordinator ABA)


Note: Please contact us if you receive more than 1 newsletter! Some forum and ABA Members have 2 memberships and user names. We would like to correct this.

Jimmy the ship's baker on the Queen Victoria  


Last month I had the privelege of meeting regular forum poster Danubian (Boris), in Sydney. Boris is an experienced baker and baking teacher.

On the same visit to Sydney, I was lucky enough to be able to get on board the visiting cruise ship Queen Victoria, and interview one of the bakers!

We are still editing Danubian's video, but Queen Victoria is ready for viewing. As the collection expands, ABA members will be able to access a collection of member videos.

Click here for videos!

Jeremy quietly pushes past 1000 posts  

Web Community

Our new web site keeps getting better in terms of features and functionality. Maedi has been working on a new Video Area, as well as fixing up existing issues, such as getting the forum to display as nicely in Internet Explorer as it does in Firefox (fixed!).

We've had several new bakers join the forum recently and voice their opinions and recipes. Regulars have joined in, resulting in some very open discussions about sourdough process.

Jeremy quietly pushed over the 1000 post mark (congrat's Jeremy!) and later celebrated his birthday by cooking up an extravaganza (chefs celebrate by cooking, of course!?)

See Jeremy's brilliant web site: Stir the Pots

ken and tomas at St Andrews Bakery in Victoria, Australia  

Gatherings in 2008

Gatherings are currently being organised in Australia. ABA have proposed events in July and September 2008 in Brisbane, Sydney and N.E Victoria.

If you are outside Australia, you are welcome to propose a gathering (at your bakery or home kitchen) and we will provide details in Sourdough Companion's Events Forum.

Australian gatherings will occur in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. If you are in another State or country...please make contact to organise your own event.

This year we are asking 1-2 bakers to demonstrate a favourite technique (eg. making Ciabatta, Croissants, etc.) as well as collaborate with members in a 'group bake'.

Location details and dates to be announced soon.

Click here to find out more!

Thomas and the stone mill at Boonderoo Farm  

Boonderoo Farm Workshop

Dates for a two day baking workshop at Boonderoo Farm have been confirmed. The event will occur over two days, November 8-9.

Thomas and Gabi Moritz are holistic bakers who make unpretentious sourdough from their North East Victoria property. They have an Alan Scott wood fired oven and bake organically for local markets and shops.

If you have ever wanted to retreat to the wilderness and bake uncompromised bread...then this is your chance.

Cost:$250 / ABA Members $220, including meals and accommodation.

Click here to find out more!

Sourdough Bagels from the hand of Dom  

Recipe: Dom's Sourdough Bagels

Dom has posted a recipe for making sourdough bagels. Serial posters have joined in and now there is whole bunch of exciting bagel creations adapted to local conditions from all over the world.

This sourdough dialogue is what Sourdough Companion is all about. Any baker can be a companion if they want (group hugs, woooosh!, etc).

Click here to make Sourdough Bagels!

ABA Standards  

ABA Standards

Standards for sourdough were launched in the last newsletter but are worth another mention. ABA standards are a voluntary way for member bakies to identify different styles of bread to customers.

The standards came about to help identify sourdough that is just sourdough (no added baker's yeast) and does not contain additives. Use of organic ingredients is also a high priority.

Click here to see ABA Standards!

Organic grain silos

Bags of Artisan Baker Stoneground Organic Flour


Organic Stone Ground Flour

ABA can now provide bakers with a range of "milled to order" certified organic flour. Artisan Baker flour is suitable for commercial and home bakers.

Both wholewheat and a lighter, sifted extraction are available. Flour can currently be purchased in 10kg bags and 1040kg palettes. Flour is made from NASAA Certified, high protein organic grain from Queensland, and milled on demand.

Thomas and Gabi from Boonderoo Farm use this flour, and report excellent performance in terms of dough handling and high water absorbtion (hydration).

A limited quantity of SPELT flour is also available.

Click Here to see Artisan Baker flour

Graham models a baker's cap  

The Sourdough Shop

Baker's Caps + Bannetons

Yes that is me modeling the bakers cap. It is a particularly good cap because it hides my rapidly receding hair line. I look and feel 20 years younger.

These youth-giving garments are made from high quality poly cotton, and fit medium to large heads. Exact head measurements and more details are available on the shop.


2007 Bannetons are being run out at discount rates. There is limited stock and we will not have new stock in until JUNE 2008!

Click Here to see Banneton Specials

baking and fishing are connected arts  

Late News

NEW POLL: Glossary of Baking Terms

What is meant by the term 'Starter' or 'Leaven'? What about other sourdough baking terms?

Danubian has put forward a DRAFT which proposes definitions for sourdough terms. The idea is to provide more clarity when we are discussing sourdough process...there is currently so much confusion.

Please take a look at the proposal and vote to show your opinion. The poll is only open for 2 weeks. Voting is anonomous.

Click Here to vote on the Draft Glossary of Terms

Iain Banfield at Fruition Bakery in Healesville, Victoria, Australia  

Thank You..

...for being a part of ABA.



Artisan Baker Association:

Phone: 07 53155206

Mobile: 0437 55 2324

Toll Free: 1300 88 3824

Do you have some news or something to say? Email us at and let us know what you'd like to include in future editions!


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