The Sourdough School
The Sourdough School was founded by Vanessa Kimbell, currently studying towards a PhD in Nutrition & Digestibility of Bread. Vanessa is both a student and a sourdough specialist, baker, award-winning author of the best-selling book The Sourdough School & regular contributor to BBC Radio 4. The school is situated in rural Northamptonshire.
What is The Sourdough School?
“A centre for sourdough research & education. We are deeply passionate about sharing knowledge and empowering people to bake bread that is both delicious and that nourishes.”
What do you do?
“Our courses go far beyond just learning to make sourdough. They are about understanding every aspect of the process. From the soil to the milling process, the nutritional value of wheat, the history of bread, to the specific actions of the microbes. We also cover how fermentation transforms flour into a more nutritious bread, and how this bread nourishes not just us, but our gut microbiota.”
What do you teach?
“At The Sourdough School you learn how to make nourishing, delicious, open-crumb, nutritious, fermented bread, with a burnished crust & a classic soft wheaten sweet-sour flavour.”
“You also learn about the microbes, from baking to digestion. Sourdough is the most ancient craft: it is about understanding the role of microbes from those you culture to make sourdough, to optimising the levels of nourishment for the microbes in your gut… known as the gut microbiome.”
What levels do you cater for?
“We welcome all levels of students, from complete beginners wanting to make their very first loaf, to doctors, health-care practitioners, and seasoned bakers who simply want to expand their repertoire or further develop their skills.”
How do you teach?
“Most of our teaching is online, but we do run a small number of tutorial-style three-day and seven-day diploma classes each year. They are run from Vanessa’s kitchen.”
Vanessa says: “My philosophy at Sourdough is to have time to chat and to learn. A warm, friendly, relaxed environment is the best place to absorb new sourdough-baking skills, and that’s exactly what my kitchen-classroom offers. I believe bakery courses should be fun. You will learn so many new skills, but also make new friends and laugh a lot.”
To find out more, visit The Sourdough School website.
For more Northamptonshire recommendations, click here.
Free copy of Vanessa’s cookbook Prepped when you attend a course at Sourdough. Please mention you are a member when you book your course on 07707 480336 and show your card on arrival.