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Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads

4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  402 ratings  ·  31 reviews
From the bestselling author of The New Complete Book of Breads comes the thirtieth anniversary edition of this classic baking book, now in trade paperback. In this exhaustive volume, you'll find recipes for every imaginable type of bread, from white and rye to cheese, herb, French, and Italian breads. Croissants, brioches, flat breads, and crackers are covered in depth as ...more
Paperback, 704 pages
Published October 3rd 2006 by Simon & Schuster (first published 1987)
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A decent cookbook should get you excited enough to cook whatever it is you wanted to cook. A superior cookbook will hypnotize you enough to make you believe you can actually create the same masterpieces described within the pages. This is a superior cookbook.

I read this as I would read a book on history. Clayton provides a background for each bread, describing the first appearance of each loaf and the city/country/human behind the story. For those who have never baked a loaf of bread, have no f
Mar 18, 2008 Suible rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: bakers,
I make a lot of bread. I had been planning on buying a bread book for a while and finally got around to actually looking for one. I was looking for yeast bread recipes, and maybe a few for quick breads. I was not at all interested in other kinds of baking - no cakes, cookies, etc., etc. Oh, and I like unusual breads - especially whole-grain, but not ones that use odd ingredients. (I define odd as any ingredient I don't already own or can't easily substitute or buy - fairly cheaply. Not that I'm ...more
Jessica N.

Love this cook book! It is chock full of recipes that I actually want to bake! Everything from basic loaf bread to sopapillas, crackers, and ethnic breads. It doesn't go much into method, but I wasn't looking for that. Very easy to read, I like the writing style. It's very down to earth and friendly. I also like how the author approves of substitutions. Some authors won't even entertain the notion. I've made one recipe so far (a fabulous dinner roll), that my kids
I'm not certain I like this book for it's plethora of recipes or the enthusiasm of the author for bread. I would not recommend this to a beginning baker of bread simply because they might become frustrated with the amount of prep work that goes into preparing starters days and weeks before you ever even get to the baking part. However, there are several breads in this book for the beginner, just be sure as a beginner you start with those. Advanced bakers would find this enjoyable as the author i ...more
Micah Wallace
Tons of recipes, and all of the breads I've made so far have turned out great. It's an excellent resource for when I need a good recipe quickly--saves me the time of trying to find a decent one online, and I know that I'm not wasting my time on a bad recipe since these are tried and proven (the same cannot be said for many recipes found on food websites... sorry, Food Network). I've been baking bread for several years and I find that I use this book as much as any other in my library. Highly rec ...more
From the first month I owned this book, I tried a recipe. It's well written, and even if you don't agree with everything he says, there's some solid logic behind his reasoning behind his ideas of breadmaking. If you're serious about breadmaking (either by hand or machine) buy this - you won't be sorry. I recently became lactose intolerant and while there's a large percentage of breads I now can't make (because of ingrdients I cannot substitute) *boo hoo*, I wouldn't get rid of this book.
I love reading this book. It has such a quiant, sharing stories and recipes over a cup of hot liquid kind of feeling.

I have also enjoyed learning baking concepts/ science and baking these recipes.

My only regret is that I don't have more time to experiencially learn and bake as he directs!

But I own it, as a dream that I refer back to and occassionally have the enjoyment of savoring either in imagination or by actual practice.

Rachel Rogers
Another cookbook that gets used regularly. Some recipes work for me, others don't. The experimentation chapter is interesting and I've learned quite a bit about the theory and science of breadmaking and baking in general from this book. Char siu and Chinese Steamed Buns are delish and alot of fun (although they do require patience...but then again, most bread does require a modicum of patience).
Feb 23, 2008 Zelda rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Zelda by: Sonya Kambic
Shelves: culinary
All of my unrisen loaves were explained by this book. Mr Clayton gives measured temperatures for hot water added to yeast mixtures -- not the "hot water" direction that led me to use hot tap water, which is nearly always the wrong temperature. Need to make co-workers your slaves? try the blueberry lemon muffins dipped in butter and sugar.
Jan 27, 2008 Carmen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Carmen by: Tom
Shelves: food
I got a Kitchenaid standing mixer for Christmas and instantly i wanted to bake bread. The cook at work recommended and i instantly fell in love. It has directions bread using your hands, a standing mixer, and a food processer [i didn't know you could use one!]. My first loaf of bread was English Oatmeal Bread- delish!
Just read that Bernard Clayton died on March 28th - obit is here:

His Book of Breads is still the best bread book out there. I've had it for nearly 20 years and have used it countless times!
I made the zucchini basil muffins and mint yogurt bread. I love bernard clayton! His recipes are nicely formatted, but I always forget there's a food processor option because it's printed after the regular way. Everything that I've made from his books always comes out great.
Great little backgrounds on each recipes and some personal stories. Great variation in levels of difficulty. For people who go by hand or by machine. Breads for all tastes and occasions.

Contrast in type could have been better and of course a few more pictures.
I've read it once and I keep reading it and trying new recipes all the time. I got it out of the library and renewed it so many times that I must have had it in my possession for 3 months! So good I finally got my own copy. A must have for any bread baker.
Dec 06, 2012 Sophie added it
I love this book. It's fun to read and the recipes I've tried have been great. Here's my adaptation of the Kolach recipe, a braided festive enriched bread: It turned out great.
Mary Ellen
Aug 06, 2009 Mary Ellen rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: any baker
Shelves: cookbooks
A great bread book. There are several of the recipes that I make quite often! Good instructions and it tells the "why" of what you do! My only complaint is the construction of the book. After only one year, my book is falling apart.
This is the best cookbook I own & use it every week. I even nicknamed it the "Bread Bible" & recommend it to all of my friends. I just love that each recipe has hand/mixer/processor instructions. Everyone should own this book!
Many of the recipes in this book sounded good, but his overuse of dried milk was frustrating to me, and the blueberry mufin recipe had way too much baking powder and was, as a result, nearly inedible.
I like the wide (really, incredibly wide) variety of breads collected here. It's also cool that the author is from Indiana, so if you read the recipe intros there are some references to local places.
This is my go-to book for breads. The instructions are complete and well written. Also a good variety of recipes and stories from his travels. Also learned that I will never make croissants by hand.
Lots of good information and good recipes. More variety than even I had thought of. Would be a good library edition for anyone who enjoys baking their own bread.
Caroline Mathews
Rating is only for the Sourdough Starter chapter. Bread book #1 and back on the shelf, unable to use.
Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads 30th Anniversary Edition by Bernard Clayton (2003)
Ann Johnson Davis
My goodness, is this book comprehensive! So much to choose from, so little time to bake.....
Massive tome. Bread galore plus the back has a recipe to make your own bread oven.
I love to bake bread of all sorts, and this is an excellent resource.
This is what finally allowed me to make a wonderful loaf of bread consistently.
Just got an advance of this book. Makes me want to eat carbs!
Donna Jo Atwood
Looking forward to trying out lots of these recipes.
Mar 14, 2008 EA rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: culinary
The only bread book you will ever need.
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Bernard Clayton Jr., a newspaper reporter whose love for fresh bread inspired him to master the art of baking and write several classic cookbooks on bread and pastry, died on March 28 in Bloomington, Ind. He was 94.

More about Bernard Clayton Jr....
Complete Book of Soups and Stews Complete Book of Breads The Breads of France: And How to Bake Them in Your Own Kitchen (Culinary Classics & Curios) Bernard Clayton's Complete Book of Small Breads: More Than 100 Recipes for Rolls Buns Biscuits Flatbreads Muffins and Other The Complete Book of Pastry: Sweet & Savory

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