Every now and then, the media picks up on the healthy eating agenda by looking at the misunderstandings which arise surrounding food and what’s good for you and what isn’t.
Often, you see bread making an appearance on the list of foods that people worry about. They voice concerns about the artificial ingredients in processed bread, while those with ceoliac and gluten intolerances find eating bread can cause bloating and discomfort.
But for the majority of us, bread can be a nutritious food as well as extremely tasty.
This weekend, the i newspaper picked up on the issue, publishing “22 food myths debunked – and what to do instead”. The article quoted nutritionist Gabi Zaromskyte as saying, “A good quality bread, free from processed ingredients and artificial fillers that enhance shelf life can be a great source of fibre, healthy fats and various vitamins and minerals as part of a balanced diet.”
Amen to that!
For the fact is that there are two types of bread available to us – the ultra-processed bread in shops and supermarkets, and the bread made by artisan bakers or those who bake in their own kitchens.
Unlike the lengthy and rather scary list of things which go into processed bread, just three ingredients - flour, yeast and water - will make you a fresh and tasty loaf. That’s it. How much simpler or more natural can you get?
Yes, you may add salt, butter or oil, but these largely dictate flavour rather than being fundamental to the making of a loaf, so you can adjust the quantities to suit what you are comfortable with.
It’s this joy of discovering how simple it is to make wholesome bread that drives my classes. We explore how these three basic ingredients can be added to with herbs, seeds spices and nuts to create wonderfully tasty fresh bread easily with just a few minutes’ work.
Why would you want to buy processed bread in a plastic bag?