I came across this book on the Delia Smith's site. I had never heard of Richard Bertinet but as I was fed up of making bread in the machine because my own always turned out as a brick I decided to give this one a try and at the same time I bought his second book Crust: Bread to Get Your Teeth into as well. This one is the one for real beginners, which happens to be my case. I knew the basics, had tried them a few times but, again, without a lot of success. The first bread I tried according to this method (which seems to be the French method of baking bread, just work the dough without adding any flour), although not one of Richard Bertinet's recipes was great, good crust, nice and soft.... a great bread! I am now making it again (just waiting for it to rise). My only problem is that my dough always seems to stay quite soft and sticky, no idea why. The DVD was a great help although it is better to watch is more than once to refresh what you have learned. The next best thing would be to attend one of Richard's workshops but well, I live too far away.
He seems to be very precise as to the amount of water he adds but according to what I have learnt it depends very much on the kind of flour you use, the humidity of the air.... so you should add bit by bit and see how much you need.
In this book Richard talks about using tea towels but in the other he talks about special bakers' towels. For us beginners tea towels are easier because we all have them at home but in the other book he says that the dough sticks to them. Maybe not if you follow his advice and never wash them!
We don't eat a lot of bread but I hope to be able to try many of his recipes and also to adapt them to the recipes I have from other books! As far as some comments here that he only uses a few types of dough... well, that is what bread is all about! There are a few types of dough to which you then add whatever ingredients you want! The bottom line is... do you want to bake really great bread? Give this book a try, follow the instruction and you will get there in the end!
On se trouve chez des amis sur la côte ouest du Pays de Galles, et on vient de réaliser une fougasse, en compagnie d'un petit Brouilly, grâce au livre de Richard Bertinet, « Dough, Simple Contemporary Bread ». Comme promis, simple, beau et délicieux. Notre seul bé-mol vient du fait que Monsieur Bertinet néglige d'indiquer s'il faut mettre la pâte, une fois formée comme il faut, immédiatement dans le four pré-chauffé ou est-ce qu'il faut attendre qu'elle gonfle ? Nous avons décidé de le mettre tout de suite avec un résultat tout à fait satisfaisant. Merci Monsieur Bertinet et bravo.