Lemon Curd and Brioche à Tête for Mother’s Day!

Brioche à Tête and Lemon Curd | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

This weekend is Mother’s Day and I will get breakfast in bed from my two wonderful young boys. It is a tradition that always ends up with the duvet and my children wearing a significant portion of food. The menu is a list of their favorite things to eat, prepared by their dad — waffles smothered in syrup, whipped cream, berries and a side of bacon (because my husband Graham loves bacon). I adore it all! They generally give me about two bites before climbing into bed to inhale the rest. I’m sure someday when the boys get older and more civilized we will go out for brunch and I will actually get to eat something, but there is a part of me that will sadly miss this display of loving savagery.

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Roasting “Sugar” Pumpkins for Bread

oatmeal pumpkin bread

It is nearly Thanksgiving and there are pumpkins in everyone’s shopping cart, generally in a can. If you want a real treat, that is easy and will have you wanting to skip the canned isle in the grocery store, try roasting your own pumpkin. Baking the pumpkin caramelizes the sugars and makes for a sweeter puree than boiling. You’ll want to start with a “pie” or “sugar” variety and avoid the BIG Jack-o-Lantern pumpkins which are great for carving but are too watery to eat their flesh. Once you have roasted your pumpkin you can use 1 cup for Oatmeal Pumpkin Bread on p. 100 of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, the rest is for your favorite pie recipe. Read More

1st Book Signing at Borders!

book signing at Rosedale Borders


Today we had our first book signing at the Borders in Rosedale Center. It was a flurry of enthusiastic bakers and non-bakers alike coming by to chat about bread and sample our Italian peasant loaf. Everyone that stopped had a story of their own bread baking or wanted to share their grandmother’s recipe. We sold and signed the entire stock of books in just a couple of hours. It was fantastic! It would seem people really love to bake bread.

My Mom’s Bialys

mom’s bialysWhen Jeff and I started to write Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day I sent the “master” recipe to my mom. It was, in my mind the ultimate test. Not because my mom has been baking for years and would be hyper critical, quite the opposite. You see my mother has many, many talents, but baking is not one of them. Or I should say it wasn’t until now. I sent her the recipe and waited. A couple of days later I got a hysterical call from her and she was slathering butter all over her first loaf of bread. She had just taken it out of the oven and despite our recommendation to let it cool she cut into it when it was still warm. She was talking to me between bites and was so proud of herself.

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Zoë on KARE 11 Saturday Show

Zoe on Kare 11 with Belinda JensenThis week Jeff and I were on the KARE 11 Saturday morning show with Belinda Jensen to promote our book and mix up our dough in front of her viewers. I admit I was a bit nervous, more than a bit, but Belinda made us feel like we were just chatting in her living room. Everyone at the studio was so kind and after our 5 minute TV debut they swarmed around the table of bread and devoured everything we brought. They have our “Master recipe” on their website. Eric Perkins was there as well and he grabbed a “sticky pecan caramel roll” between every segment.

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Baking Bread with 4 Boys

4 boys bakingThis weekend my boys had their friends over and we baked bread together. When you put dough in the hands of 4 boys under the age of 9 things get very creative! We used the “master recipe” from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day to start and then they used their fingers, rolling pins, cookie cutters and let their imaginations go wild. They shaped it into everything from snowflakes to Pokemon characters. They had as much fun eating the bread as they did baking it! Read More