The Work of Hands, September 25 & 26, 1998

American Flatbread + Flatbread Kitchen
Friday and Saturday September 25 and 26, 1998
Tonight’s menu and baking are dedicated to:


It is unusual anymore, to eat bread made by hand. And that is too bad. For the work of the hands makes a difference to food. The ancient Greeks knew this. Their celebration and respect for manual labor gave rise to the Ionian Awakening. This revolution in human thought became the foundation for a rationalist inquiry into the principles and laws of nature. Out of respect and honor for the work of hands sprung our sense of science.

Almost all of the modern innovations in bread baking have been about making the process easier or more efficient: they have been about replacing the work of hands with the acts of machines; with substituting earth and fire with exotic ceramics and fossil fuels.

These changes have made our bread cheaper and easier to make, but not really better. We have too often sacrificed flavor, nutrition and wholesomeness for expedience, uniformity and shelf stability.

American Flatbread is an experiment in post modern bread baking: to see what happens when bread is made by caring hands with simple wholesome ingredients baked in a primitive wood-fired earthen oven.

Thanks for coming tonight. Happy days.

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