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Sourdough Currant Bread: A Gift from a Friend

On Thea’s Birthday, she and Chad gave ME a gift: this incredible bread!

Even the wrapping is perfect. Where did you get the lovely thick brown paper, Chad? I have brown craft paper that is also great for wrapping, but this is special.

I was shocked into silence (and you all know that is rare!) when Chad included this package in a bag of goodies I was picking up from him when I delivered his brand new Thermomix to him!

“It is a currant bread. It is not sweet. You might want to eat it with some bleu cheese.” was Chad’s advice, and Thea’s: “A roasted lamb sandwich sounds like the perfect compliment with it to me.” I love currants. I love homemade breads. I was thinking toasted with butter. I was also thinking I should give you a hug! … and thank you so very much!

Then I got home and unwrapped it and was in AWE! I should not have expected less from Chad. He is a well known very talented barista and Chef in our city. I just did not expect such an incredible loaf of artisan bread. I didn’t want to eat it.

OK. That is stretching it a bit far… but, you can see I was at least respectful of the gorgeous hand formed loaf. Take a tour around it. It is beautiful: not heavy, but substantial.

I should have taken a photo of my floury nose after pressing it against the crust to breath in the yeasty goodness. The crust was gorgeously “crusty” and the aroma within was so unexpected and intoxicating.

Vanja and I both looked at one another and said, “Beer!” at the same time. The depth of the yeast had clearly brewed up some complex dark lager notes and with the currants nestled in here and there, I couldn’t slice it fast enough.

How the heel looks, lying there, does not do it justice: let me try. No. I can’t. Just take your taste memory to the best artisan bread you have ever eaten and recall the aroma, the crunch of the crust, the depth of complex yeasty flavours… the mouth feel, the chew … smack your lips once or twice! You’ve got it!

Thank you, Chad. Thank you, Thea. I await the recipe to share with all of my food loving friends so that they can make it, but more importantly, so that I can. This is one unforgettable loaf!

That was going to be the end of the post… but, when I stopped by Chad’s place of work, guess what I got? The recipe! And not just any old recipe, hand written, detailed and illustrated! But, that is not all! It came with a container of Adam’s mom’s sourdough starter! Can you feel the emotion? It swept through me and was ultimate gratification. I ask for the recipe, and I get so much more. I just finished a slice of this bread again today for lunch. The complexity of flavour had me grinning and humming all alone at the table, kicking my feet back and forth under my chair, and truly savouring the goodness in this bread and in my day.

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About Valerie Lugonja

Educator, Writer, Gardener and Traveler who believes in buying and eating locally, and most importantly cooking at home!

Join The Conversation!

  1. So sweet of Chad and Thea! Those of us who have had the pleasure of meeting you and befriending you, know that you would do the same for a friend. One word, Valerie….karma :-D

  2. What a lovely gift. I may like the recipe as much as the bread.

  3. How sweet of Thea and Chad! The boule looks professionally baked!

  4. mmmm… nothing beats the smell, crunch and taste of fresh bread!

  5. I’ve had their bread once before, and it is indeed spectacular. Lucky you!

  6. That bread is an absolute beauty. I’d love to get a gift like that (hint!), and to get the recipe and the starter too? AWESOME :D
    *kisses* HH

  7. What a wonderful gift! I think a homemade artisan loaf can say so many things about the giver and the recipient and their relationship – and I think this loaf says it all. I’ve had a few truly wonderful artisan loaves in my time, and just looking at the beautiful crumb and crust in this loaf brings me back to those times. Thanks for including the recipe – we have some sourdough starter that’s just begging to be used :)

    Have a lovely day, Valerie!

  8. Yum! I love good bread.

  9. That bread does look super delicious, Valerie. And I agree about the lamb with the currants-that just sounds perfectly wonderful. Ooh, and with a beer, of course;-)!
    I love the instructions too. Someone takes their bread quite seriously, which is very cool…

  10. It looks absolutely beautiful! What a wonderful gift, and the recipe included is above and beyond lovely!
    I picked up some freshly baked bread this mroning from the culinary students at work (NAIT), and I have been doing my best not to eat the warm loaf all day at my desk :)

  11. A gorgeous loaf of bread! Such a nice gift!

  12. You are a lucky girl!

  13. What wonderful friends you have, Valerie! The bread sounds and looks totally wonderful, and I’m squinting now to see if I can make out the recipe shown in your photo above so I can make it. Perhaps a magnifying glass would help my aging eyes.

    • Barbara!
      If you click on the recipe and hold, then select “open link in new window” it will open up in another window and be as big as the page. Hope that works. The other option, of course, is to copy it and print it…. or a magnifying glass!
      :)
      Valerie

  14. that bread looks so beautiful!…i absolutely love it.

  15. That is a seriously gorgeous loaf of bread! I’m striving to make one with such a great crust. Lucky you!

  16. Such a nice gift. Enjoy!

  17. My mouth is watering but I’ve just had dinner. I love bread, so glad I’m not gluten intolerant.

  18. Valerie, this bread is GORGEOUS! Chad sounds like some kind of guy and a fine baker. I too love that rustic brown paper wrapping with the butcher string. The cross on the crusty bread is beautiful too. You are one lucky gal :)

  19. That’s some pretty incredibly serious bread making…I’m so envious…especially since artisanl bread is like chocolate to me ;o)

    Valerie, what goes around certainly has come around for you because only good, generous souls are offered such great homemade goodies ;o) Buon appetito!

    Flavourful wishes,
    Claudia

  20. Wow! This is quite a special bread! You must be a very good friend for Chad to provide the starter and such detailed instructions. It looks delicious!

  21. How sweet of Chad, such a beauty ..and I agree the wrapping is awesome, and to gift you a handwritten recipe and starter..now that’s a gem of a friend, congrats

    sweetlife

  22. Why am I not surprised to hear you received such a beautiful loaf? After all, you just delivered him a brand new thermomix! Hopefully now we can bring you even more goodies!

  23. This bread is a dream isn’t it. I can just smell and taste it too Val. What a lovely gift my friend, just awesome.

  24. Simply fantastic!!!!

  25. Wow that bread looks good, what a wonderful gift!! Bread making is not easy, this bread looks superb.

  26. Sandra Camp says:

    I found it very difficult to read the recipe, it would be lovely if you could type it out!

    • Valerie Lugonja says:

      I know, Sandra!
      But I probably won’t for quite some time. I am so sorry about that, but your request has the recipe on my radar and I will try to make it within the next month – and when I do that, will definitely type it up.
      :)
      Valerie

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