About The Bread Geek

It was 2007, and the vilification of wheat had just begun. Study after study rolled off the press, all proving that the “staff of life” was a dietary weapon of mass destruction. The media made me terrified to give my children wheat, but I was haunted by questions. Why after so many thousands of years was wheat hurting us NOW? What had changed? No one seemed to understand.

I didn’t know it at the time, but I was about to discover that  Bread+Research+Discovery = Severe Geekiness.

I became, incurably, the Bread Geek.

I researched my brains out, experimented, studied, scalped recipes, and finally made the connection that made all the pieces fit. Wheat had changed somewhat, yes, but the real issue was that we had changed the WAY we made bread. A process that once took days with home-grown Natural Yeast could now be done in mere minutes with lab-created commercial yeast. And that, my friends, made all the difference. There’s a lot of science behind that statement, but I’ll let you check out my book The Art of Baking With Natural Yeast from your library and read the introductory section with all the in-depth info and research.

So I learned to bake with Natural Yeast. At first my loaves were barely edible “bricks” but I didn’t quit, and I got better.

natural yeast fail Naturally yeasted whole wheat bread

I baked for us, for friends, friends of friends, and perfect strangers. I started teaching classes. I wrote a brochure that sold out weekly, sometimes daily. Eventually, I wrote a cookbook with Caleb Warnock called The Art of Baking With Natural Yeast. 


Melissa Richardson and Caleb Warnock Art of Baking with Natural Yeast

Since then, my goal has been to use my book, my blog, my classes, and every other means of communication to help America [re]discover Natural Yeast. The health and future of our nation (and many others) hinges on our return to proven, traditional forms of food preparation.

the bread geek classes

To urge this movement along, and at the request of hundreds of readers and class attendees, I wrote a companion cookbook, Beyond Basics With Natural Yeast. Between the two books there should be nothing you can’t bake better with Natural Yeast.

beyond basics with natural yeast

If you’re new to Natural Yeast baking, I encourage you to check out The Art of Baking With Natural Yeast from the library, or pick it up from Amazon on Kindle or in Hardback. On this website browse through the “Lessons” tab under “Natural Yeast Starter” for more information and tutorials. You can also join our ongoing casual conversations on bread by following me on Facebook and Instagram.

I hope you enjoy your time on my site, and don’t hesitate to ask questions! It’s what Geeks do!

With Love,

Melissa Richardson

(The Bread Geek)