breadI admit it, I’m a total fan girl. When Ellie Krieger retweeted my recent article for Today’s Dietitian magazine, “The Case for Bread: Is it the dietary devil it’s made out to be?” it made my evening.

[Before I segue into bread, a side note on Ellie. If you don’t happen to know who she is, you’ve been missing out. She’s the author of several really good cookbooks based on her philosophy that healthy food should be delicious (I couldn’t agree more). She’s also the host of the public television cooking show “Ellie’s Real Good Food.” If you’re a Food Network fan, you may remember her from her previous show, “Healthy Appetite.” She’s also smart, funny and incredibly nice.]

The issue with modern bread

I was serious when I said I’d been wanting to write that article for a long time. One, because I know that modern wheat is neither genetically modified nor significantly higher in gluten than heirloom wheats, yet those myths persist. Two, because I also know that bread is part of health-promoting traditional diets—including the Mediterranean diet—and has been for eons. How could bread possibly be so bad?

Turns out, its modern breadmaking that’s the issue, but I’ll let you read my article for that. I really dug into the issues with modern bread, talking to two super-fascinating experts on wheat breeding and bread making, including Stephen Jones, director of the WSU Bread Lab up in Skagit County.

Artisan bread at home

Speaking of breadmaking, the photo at the top of the post is one of my husband’s amazing artisan loafs. Alas, we’ve been without his bread for a while, since his sourdough starter died a slow death while he was busy getting our house ready for sale. He’s promised to launch a new starter today, and even dug out our countertop stone mill. We’re keeping a lot of kitchen items packed away until we build our house, but decided that resuming breadmaking couldn’t wait.

That stone mill is a thing of beauty, and really upped my husband’s bread game. The other game-changer? The book “Flour Water Salt Yeast” by Ken Forkish of Ken’s Artisan Bakery and Ken’s Artisan Pizza in Portland. If you find yourself in Portland (Oregon, not Maine), I highly recommend. I’ve only been once, but this sandwich…also a game changer: