Perhaps you've done it too, around the holidays when your counter is covered with fresh baked stollen and gugelhopf, and panettone? What kind of feverish devotion does it take to burn the midnight oil, hoist bags of flour, and keep baking long past the point of collapse? You see Guilds for Bread Bakers have continued from the time of the Renaissance, and this was one of the inspirations for my novel, City of Ladies, that this not only existed in the past but is still going today. How exciting, don't you think?
As you tear open that baguette or jammify that croissant on your plate The Bread Bakers Guild of America is furiously readying for the 2012 Le Coupe de Monde de la Boulangerie in, of course, Paris.
A Mound of Dough in C'est si Bon!
Did I Make Enough Ropes for Shells, Bodies, and Heads?
Wacqueline Stern Show
Mixing in the Wine-Cooked Whole Wheat Mash
They are not alone however. 11 other countries are "proofing" their worth and raising their hopes too!
The Netherlands (don't you love calling a country The ......)
Have fun peeking at all the teams and their members. I am a bit taken with Team Poland.
All will have to produce:
The baguettes and the specialty breads
The sweet breads
The savory presentations --- a brand new category this year!
And an artistic piece that represents the theme of "Bread: The symbol of your country."
You might consider joining the Bread Bakers Guild of America to support our American Team in the upcoming World Cup of Bread. March 3-7 2012. The competition will be held at Europain, which is a major European baking trade show.
How has the USA faired in the past competitions? We won back in 2003. On Wild Yeast's blog check out these hot photos of the training at the San Francisco Bread Institute for the World Cup's 2010 competition.
Curious to see all this in live action? Over on the film site IMDb you can become a pro-subscriber (free trial for 14 days) and watch The World Baking Cup: The Best Bread in the World, a documentary from 2003 when the USA Team overthrew 11 other countries to take home the "Cup" for the first time.
What do you think, do we have a prayer of a chance to win?