Sourdough or Sourfaux?

In artisan baking, where every loaf tells a story of tradition, skill, and flavor, standing out amidst the sea of competition can be a daunting task. Yet, within the flour-dusted confines of your bakery, lies a secret weapon waiting to be unleashed: your artisanal methods and practices, each imbued with a history and personality of its own. In the most recent Wisdom Wednesday, Mark Floerke shared a treasure trove of insights on one in particular: sourdough!

Getting Creative With Sourdough

Imagine warm, crusty sourdough loaves emerging from the oven, their aroma filling the air with promises of tangy goodness. Of course, this isn’t just any sourdough—it’s your signature creation, meticulously crafted using time-honored techniques passed down through generations. And now, it’s time to share your masterpiece with the world!

Market your artisanal methods and practices by name. Let each fold, each proofing, and each sourdough starter have its moment in the spotlight. Utilize the efforts you put in to share with prospective customers, weaving tales of tradition and craftsmanship that pique customer curiosity.

But don’t stop there. Create added interest, build a following, and leverage value by giving your creations names that resonate with your audience. While a picture can paint a thousand words on Instagram, creating a following for your sourdough descriptions and name varieties could be a trend-setting move.

Watch the full Wisdom Wednesday here:


Educate Your Bakers

Train your people to know your products and what differentiates them. Elevate your staff from mere salespeople to passionate ambassadors of your craft, capable of extolling the virtues of your bread with the fervor of a sommelier describing a fine wine.

Almost 10 years ago, the term “sourfaux” was coined to refer to those bakers who do not follow artisanal craft methods in producing sourdough loaves. Set yourself apart from the sourfaux masses by showcasing your commitment to tradition and quality in every bite.

Speaking of bites, educate your customers on the art of pairing. For instance, how to pair your sourdough with wine, chocolates, vegetables, proteins, and cold cuts. What makes the best toasted peanut butter and banana sourdough toast? Which of your varieties of bread reigns supreme as the sourdough king?

The Ancient Craft of Sourdough

With sourdough, the possibilities are as endless as the varieties themselves. Did you know there’s even a sourdough library in Belgium with hundreds of distinctly different sourdough starter samples? It’s a testament to the diversity and richness of this ancient craft.

Mark has personally witnessed the magic of artisanal baking through a friend with a very successful bakery in Toronto. This baker has had remarkable success by transplanting a sourdough culture from his home region of Alsace in France, infusing his bread with a taste of history and heritage.

As you embark on your journey to conquer the world of artisanal baking, remember that there’s a story behind every loaf, and it’s yours to tell. Whether you’re crafting sourdough masterpieces or perfecting the art of the baguette, let your passion and creativity shine through in every slice. And who knows? You might just inspire a sourdough revolution of your own. Keep baking, keep innovating, and keep sharing the magic of artisanal bread with the world!

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