GrAiNZ: taking baking to the next level

Published on September 26 2019.

Photo: Rethinking bread, baking and grains at GrAiNZ

You love bread, but are you ready to get serious and go deeper? Sourdough croissants? Super-miche? Heritage wheats? Home maltings?

If bread and baking interest you, and your interest extends from the crop right through to the businesses selling the baked goods, clear the diary over 7 to 9 October and point the car to Redbeard Bakery in Trentham: GrAiNZ is back.

An annual gathering connecting grain growers and users, GrAiNZ is here to help producers and millers, bakers, breeders and brewers from around the world “learn from each other and build a local grain economy that benefits the health of our planet and people”. And while many of the subjects of the talks cater to a professional level of understanding (yield and quality in composite cross-population wheat, say, or integrated disease management in cereals), there’s plenty there to nourish the enthusiastic amateur as well, and all are welcome.

International guests include Dr Stephen Jones from Washington State University,  a renowned wheat breeder and director of Bread Lab; Graison Gill from Bellegarde Bakery in New Orleans, a global voice in the sustainable production of artisan bread from freshly stoneground flour, and an educator in the economic and ecological value of whole grains; and Kimberley Bell, from the UK’s Small Food Bakery, an activist baker who operates a bakery with direct engagement with farmers and a view to building a prosperous non-commodity grain economy.

You’ll hear discussions of food sovereignty and Australian indigenous grains from the likes of author and indigenous grains revivalist Bruce Pascoe, indigenous foods advocate Andrew Fielke, and chef Dan Hunter. Baker extraordinaire and celebrated author Dan Lepard is flying out for the event to make barm bread, and Oakridge Estate’s pastry innovator Jo Barrett will join him among the demonstrators. Other demonstrations include Quentin Berthhonneau on wholegrain sourdough baguette, Ian Lowe on schrotrot and James Fisher on milling with an Osttiroler. “All with fresh-milled flour from sustainably grown wheat, of course.”

GrAiNZ, 7-9 October 2019, Redbeard Bakery, Wolff La, Trentham, Vic. Full-day tickets from $190; for program details and ticketing, visit grainz.org.au.