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Breadsong: How Baking Changed Our Lives

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If you had told me at 14 when I couldn't even get out of bed with depression and anxiety that three years later I would have written a book I would never have believed you. But here it is - the story of the Orange Bakery. How I went from bed to bread and how my Dad went from being a teacher to a baker. You reading it means everything to me' Kitty Tait Serving suggestion Cut thinly, toasted and spread with a scraping of horseradish sauce, some smoked salmon and a couple of thinly sliced cornichons.

Breadsong: How Baking Changed Our Lives - Goodreads

It is a cookbook with the power to make you cry – or it did to me. The difficulties Kitty and her family went through, the difficulties of mental and physical health, financial worries – but bizarrely, it was the power that bread has over people that made me emotional. If you’re not a baker then you may not realise what I mean by that. I bake (unprofessionally), although not as much as I used to thanks to a Neurological condition I have developed, but I still try to when I can. Baking has always been my way of dealing with fierce emotions. When I lost my dad, I baked an absurd amount of cakes and biscuits for the hospice staff; I bake (and eat) when I’m stressed, when I’m sat, when I’m bored, when I’m happy. It’s just my moment to completely forget about everything else and the joy you get seeing someone enjoy what you’ve made is priceless. And to see that written down on paper was what made me cry. This is part memoir, part cookbook. The first part is written in two hands, between Kitty and Al (the father), describing their journey to help Kitty overcome her anxiety and their journey with the bakery as well as the two seemed to come together. I really loved reading this memoir and was totally obsessed by it (I read it over two days and probably also dreamt about it at night).


Just when I thought I didn't have anything left to learn about bread, Kitty teaches me otherwise. Accessible, engaging and wonderfully wide ranging The first half of Birdsong recounts how The Orange Bakery came to be, including Kitty's mental health struggles that led to her being introduced to breadmaking. I found the split father and daughter narration to be really engaging, with a good blend of (sometimes stark) emotional reality and humour. I am so glad that this book is going to be published later this month as I am looking forward to owning my own hard copy. I also know what I will be buying friends and family for Christmas! Thank you Netgalley for letting me read this story in exchange for an honest review.

Breadsong: How Baking Changed Our Lives: Kitty Tait

I then took my copy on holiday and read 'the journey'. It was so enjoyable, I loved every minute, it was so interesting and despite my preconceptions (thought they must have had a bit of money to start something like this) I was completely wrong and it was completely inspirational how this happened. It's given me hope and inspiration to try to do something with my own love of cooking and I would highly recommend this to anyone but especially those who have found a time in their life when they have struggled. It's profoundly obvious but there are just some things that are bound to help when you're not feeling well or when you are stressed and walking a dog or baking some bread or spending time with loved ones should be up there with things doctors prescribe.Once your dough has risen and is bubbling away, tip it on to a lightly floured work surface. Remember it’s alive so the greater respect you show the dough with gentle handling, the more it will reward you and the better your loaf will come out. Gently shape the dough into a ball – a well-floured plastic dough scraper really helps here – making sure there is a light coating of flour all over. Radio 2 has a lot to answer for; every time they feature an author on their Sunday morning show, I HAVE to go and buy it, and this was no exception. Breadsong is the first book from Kitty and Al Tait, the daughter-father duo that run The Orange Bakery in Watlington. It charts Kitty’s battle with depression and anxiety that saw her leave school and withdraw from her family, and the salvation she found in the simple act of baking bread with her dad. The first half of the book is Kitty and Al telling this story and the second half is full of recipes designed for the beginner baker.

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