Leave your Atkins, no carb diet at the door. The Red Beard Bakery, Trentham is the place to indulge your carb filled fantasies.
Bread gets a bad rap these days. Carb cutting is the current fad dieting move. People everywhere are turning their noses up at pasta, refusing potatoes and leaving the bread out of their salad sandwiches (which just makes it a salad really). But the loaves sold at Red Beard have nothing in common with the blocks of fluffy white nothingness sold at the supermarket, which it probably is a good idea to avoid.
The Red Beard Bakery, just off the main street of Trentham, makes certified organic, sour doughbreads and pastries baked in a wood fired oven. There is also a café which does breakfasts, lunches and speciality dinners. The wood fired Scotch oven used at Red Beard was built about 140 years ago and although common in the 19th Century it is one of the few remaining in Australia now. It is undoubtedly one of the keys to this distinctively flavoured bread.
Tours of the bakery are run Monday to Friday and baking workshops operate Wednesdays and Sundays. Participants in the workshop learn to make their own leaven, the starter culture and base of sour dough bread.
A range of sour dough breads are available including Blonde – a Vienna loaf, Stubble – a multigrain and Carmen Miranda – a spicy fruit loaf. However like other great flavour amalgamations (tomatoes with basil or lamb with rosemary) nothing says sour dough more stridently than dark rye. The Raven loaf is made a combination of stone ground light and dark rye with no wheat. It’s a thick and chewy bread that is perfected toasted with vegemite or a bowl of soup. And the Raven loaf is heavy. Do a few reps of bicep curls with it if you really feel that bad about eating carbs.