Our New Book, a New Look and a Giveaway! [WINNERS WERE ANNOUNCED 6/15/09, CONTEST CLOSED]


As many of you know Jeff and I have spent the past year working on a new book, Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day: 100 New Recipes Featuring Whole Grains, Fruits, Vegetables, and Gluten-Free Ingredients
(HBin5). It is a project that started with you! Because of your questions, comments and requests for breads made with whole grains, seeds, nuts, fruits, veggies and even gluten-free ingredients, we set to work to create new recipes. We liked them so well, we decided to do another book. We’ve been playing with ways to make breads that are not only nutritious, but incredibly tasty and still fit into our busy lives. The methods will still be fast, easy and only take 5 minutes, but the results are wonderful breads made with ingredients that will keep us happy and healthy, no matter our dietary needs. Who better than a pastry chef and a doctor to write such a book?

Writing a cookbook takes a long time, not only to test and retest and then test again the recipes, but the editing and designing of the book after we write it.ย  Although it is nearly done we still have more work to do before it comes out this fall. HBin5 will be available in the book stores on October 27th of this year. In the mean time Amazon has posted it for pre-orders for those of you who want to avoid the mad rush at the book stores! ๐Ÿ˜‰

In honor of HBin5 we’ve launched this new home page on our website. My husband Graham designed and built the site for us and Jeff’s wife Laura, who is also our copy editor, wrote much of it. We are so fortunate to have such a creative and talented team to help us. We want to thank them for all of their work!And THANK YOU for inspiring us to write our second book. As a thank you we are giving away 5 signed copies of our CURRENT book: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.

Here is a little glimpse into our life of writing HBin5:


On any given day I have about 5-8 buckets of dough in my refrigerators. (Yes, I have two and at the moment there is little room for anything but dough!) I generally wake up in the morning,ย  shape and let rest several loaves of bread and then once I get my boys off to school I bake them. I have a double wall oven, nothing fancy, but having two ovens makes testing a dream. I can bake about six loaves at a time. Jeff is simultaneously doing all of this across town at his house as well. Between the two of us we could qualify as a chain of bakeries.


Once the loaves are baked and cooled, Jeff and I meet and have a tasting. We sample each others breads and do a critique on taste, texture, the look of the loaf and even the sound of the crust. If one of us isn’t absolutely in love with the bread, we discuss how to improve it and go back to the bucket!ย  Sometimes we hit it on the first try and others take several variations. After a tasting we usually walk around the lake, to work off all the sampling and then head back to our kitchens.


As we test and talk and retest and change things and have others test for us, we write everything down. The stack of notes and versions of the recipes that you see here is only my stuff. Jeff has a similar pile in his kitchen, along with a testing schedule and excel spread sheets of all our progress. (It is a blessing to work with someone who loves excel!) This process is a lot of work, but we absolutely love it. I wake up in the morning totally excited to see what my buckets of dough have brought me for the day. As Jeff always says, “if your not having fun the bread won’t taste good!” You are so right Jeff!


Oh and let me not forget the photo shoots with Mark Luinenburg. He did all of the gorgeous photos in ABin5 and this time for HBin5 we have twice as many. He does wonderful work and is so much fun. And Nan the make-up artist who did her very best to make me look like Audrey Hepburn and told Jeff he looks like a young Paul Newman. She will forever be in our good favor!

Leave us a comment about your favorite bread and you will be eligible to win one of the 5 signed copies of our current book: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day! We will announce the winners next week.

While we were loading the new front page of the website we ran into a little snag and ended up losing the last 2 days ofย  our comments. So, if you wrote to us in the past 2 days and haven’t heard from us that is why. Please, write to us again and we will get back to you. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Thanks, Zoรซ and Jeff

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586 thoughts on “Our New Book, a New Look and a Giveaway! [WINNERS WERE ANNOUNCED 6/15/09, CONTEST CLOSED]

  1. We’ve tried several of the recipes, and love them all—but our favorite is the East European Potato Rye. It’s to die for! So moist and stays that way–although a loaf doesn’t last for more than 2 days. We tried store-bought “artisan” bread the other day, and were very disappointed….so it’s back to the bucket for me, from now on! Keep up the great work—looking forward to that new book!

  2. I love making all of your breads, but the Italian Semolina recipe is my favorite! I absolutely cannot wait for your new book!

  3. I just bought your first book after hearing about it on Cheapskate Monthly. I’ve very excited to work my way through your book (and so are my friends and neighbors!) Looking forward to the new book!

  4. My current favorite is pita bread. It seemslike I make it every couple of days, although a modified version of the caramel sticky buns would be a close second. So completely delicious!

  5. Wow. I don’t know if I have a favorite yet; I’m getting my legs under me, so to speak, with basic breads now, trying to adjust to my family’s taste. (My goal? Stop buying supermarket bread. Not so easy with my family’s … finicky … palate.) I’ve stumbled upon all this just now looking for a good brioche, and was supposed to get a lot more done around the house Sunday than reading all the great stuff on the site.

    So, I’m a big fan of brioche (and cinnamon rolls, and sticky buns, and about anything else you can do with a soft, buttery dough like that), and really look forward to a step change in preparing food from scratch.

    Thanks! And congratulations on the birth of your second “child”. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. My favorite is the master. It always manages to impress. Today we are having homemade hot dog buns thanks to it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Hey guys, I have to say that Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day is really incredible! I was skeptical of the concept but after trying it I’ve become a believer, and I tell everyone I know about it!
    My favourite bread is the za’atar flatbread – everytime I’ve made it, it has been a big hit, and the spice is very different and very delicious. Can’t wait for HBin5 in October!

  8. I just finally got the book – I had to wait for over a month to get a copy from the library! Evidently my county is filled with bread-baking fiends. LOL So, I don’t have favorite yet but I’m excited to start the first batch of dough with my two boys tomorrow.

  9. I swear by the brioche. I just love the versatility of the dough, not to mention how delicious and easy it is!

  10. I have always loved whole wheat bread and have been adding whole grains to our diets. I am looking forward to your new book.

  11. OMG – I so want this book! I hear about everyone making it on twitter and I am jealous…green with envy…..
    It is on my wishlist….and my library doesn’t carry it either….so I wait…..
    Would love to be making fresh bread (great bread) for my boys more often.

  12. Right now, sourdough is my favorite, although it literally changes with the weather – sometimes it’s too hot to bake and someone else’s bread is my favorite…

  13. Hurray for your new book! I am a sourdough girl all the way but any recipe I can turn into a pizza dough, I am SO there! Thanks for fabulous giveaway! I hope I win! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. I love a good French bread with butter on it but my favorite type of bread by far is a nice dark rye. Best of luck with the new book, not that you’ll really need it!

  15. Fantastic and all the breads look great! I love Challah, but I also love bagels and cinnamon raisin bread and dense breads with nuts. Mmmm, I just love fresh bread!

  16. I love your book… It has really inspired me. We all have such busy lives, and I hadn’t made bread in years. Since discovering ABin5 about 6 months ago, I’m thrilled to be able to bake beautiful bread several times a week. The European Peasant bread is my standard “go to” loaf …For a heartier loaf, I substitute in about 1/2 cup of King Arthur Harvest Grains Blend for some of the flour. The Buttermilk bread is also delicious. I can hardly wait until HBin5 comes out!

  17. I can’t believe how fantastic this site is! Is it too late to comment in hopes of winning the new book? I hope not–it looks like something I NEED to have in my collection. I’m so glad to have found this site–the pictures, the writing, the information–all wonderful!

  18. Hi…we found your recipe for bread through mother earth news several months ago and haven’t bought any in the store since. “best thing since sliced bread”……..looking forward to the new book

  19. Hot yeast rolls – go with everything! Also love cinnamon raisin bread. Ok, I love pretty much any kind of bread ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. I’m a homeschool mom, your recipes in “Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day” have helped me greatly in preparing healthier bread in less time. I thank God for you!

    I can’t wait for the new book to arrive from Amazon (I have ordered 2). I have a few friends who are allergic to gluten. They often have to pay $4.99 for a loaf of gluten free bread. Would you please be so kind to share one gluten-free bread recipe with us, so that the 4-month wait time would be less intolerable?

    Ann Ralls

    1. Ann: Wish we could put the recipes up right now, but our publisher has warned us not to, in order not to scoop our own book

  21. My favorite is the master recipe for boule, because of how very versatile it is.

    I’m very excited to hear about your upcoming book, and can’t wait to get my hands on a copy!

  22. I love the basic boule. I have only had my book a couple weeks but the master recipe is so good I can’t stop making that.
    Next week I am making my boule AND trying another recipe from the book. Too much fun!!!

  23. Jeff and Zoe:
    I was a teenager before I even tasted store-bought bread. As an adult I baked bread in spurts, on for a couple years, off for a couple and I did enjoy the process. However, I am also a bit of a neat freak and have always hated the mess with flour all over the place. I really do envy those other grandma’s who enjoy half a dozen grandkids making cookies and chaos in their kitchens, but that’s just not me! Your ABin5 was created for me! I love the bread I have made so far and look forward to making many more. I am actually good at making the labor intensive kind, I just don’t want to! Thank you for creating this bread. It makes me wonder why I didn’t think of it ;).

  24. Just wanted to drop in and say the new site is gorgeous! Well done. I seriously can’t wait for the new book!

  25. I have been baking quite a bit in the oven using your book and LOVE the results. Now that it is warmer out, I have been using your directions for cooking on the grill. That leads me to my new question: Is there any reason not to simply use parchment paper on a stone when cooking bread or pizza in the oven? It seems so much tidier than getting corn meal all over… Would love your thoughts.

    1. Hi Liz,

      Totally agree, we use parchment all the time. It plays a major role in our second book!

      Thanks, Zoรซ

  26. I’ve been using and loving your Artisan Bread Book and LOVE it. My mother must eat gluten free bread and I’m wondering just how many gluten free recipes are in your new book. She wouldn’t want to buy a book if it had only one recipe, for instance. Please let me know how easy it would be to bake the GF bread…maybe some ingredients? Would she have to mix up flours (rice, soy. etc). Are there lots of stange and expensive ingredients? Thanks in advance for your time and thanks for your books! Pam Hart

    1. Pam: The number is still in flux, but it looks like there’ll be about 8 recipes that are GF, though some of those will be based on the same doughs. There will probably be 4 or 5 unique dough recipes.

      It’s definitely more effort to do GF. You need xanthan gum, and a mixture of flours such as those you mention (not soy).

  27. My favorite was your basic recipe, because I keep a kosher kitchen and will soon be moving to a city in which there are very few kosher breads to be had, and I’d miss the crusty bread from my local bakery. When I made my first loaf from your recipe, I celebrated because I knew I’d be able to have good bread, for the rest of my life, with much less time and effort than I’d thought I’d need .

  28. I love to bake bread, and was happy to find your web site in a magazine. I hope I win ! I am excied to try your recipes.

  29. Howdy,

    I’m sure you get this question a lot, however, it still remains a mystery for me. Just what is a non-air tight container. Every container, of food grade storage quality, which I have found, has a lid which fits like a Tupperware cover. To me, that is air tight. I have a large capacity rectangular, low profile, container which I use, but it too has an air tight lid, thus I must leave it ajar. That leads to heavily crusted over dough when stored for longer than a couple of days in the refrigerator. If I close the lid down, even slightly, the dough becomes extremely wet on the bottom; not good.

    Where can I purchase containers which meet your requirements? That is, if you were to buy new containers at this moment, where would you go to make that purchase? What type of container would you purchase – size, color, grade, with or w/o lid, shape?

    1. Don: If the plastic container’s lid fits very tightly and approximates an airtight seal, all you need to do is “crack” the lid during the first 48 hours of storage in the fridge. After that, there isn’t much gas produced and usually I can fully seal most of my plastic containers, which allow for a little leakage. Alternatively, you can make a small hole in the lid, or buy a vented container– some plastic storage containers are being made this way to vent steam during microwave cooking. Beer-making buckets are often vented too. I’m not crazy about the wide flat containers because they offer so much more drying surface to the dough– with that crusty result you describe.

      I use this container, available at amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Round-Storage-Container-Clear-separately/dp/B0001MRUUU?&camp=212361&linkCode=wey&tag=arbrinfimiada-20&creative=380725. Be aware that this particular product doesn’t come with the lid, you have to order that separately.

      Other container ideas on our earlier post: http://artisanbreadinfive.com/?p=121

  30. I don’t use the container’s lid at first; instead, I put on one of those old-fashioned elasticized covers that look like shower caps. You get a whole box with two sizes for $1 and they’re wonderful for leftovers too.

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