The food journey for me started at a young age with Mum, Dad and Oma's influence. All fantastic cooks, they passed on the knowledge and importance of good ingredients and how not to waste them.
A long time ago I left the countryside behind to carve out a career as a chef in London. Working for Richard Shepard and then a short stint at Chez Bruce I realised that after a decade of the kitchen, a change was needed and I moved back to Marlborough. One of the many culinary passions that remained was baking, bread in-particular.
Another decade passed in the corporate world, and the passion for food wouldn't go away. Rudies was born, a microbakery based in the market town of Marlborough, Wiltshire. The aim is a simple vision that good, honest bread should be available in every town, to everyone.
Another passion of Rudies is to replicate our sourdough and other breads in a gluten and wheat free format. My son loves my bread, but he was diagnosed with a wheat allergy meaning he can no longer eat it. It is now a mission to make him bread that he enjoys as much as a conventional loaf that we can share with everyone else
Rudies signature products are the sourdoughs. I'm very proud of the product which is almost 20 years of practice and toast! There are various sizes and flavours, but our flagship is our white and wholemeal blend.
I use organic flour from Shipton Mill and nothing else bar water and sea salt. The bread is naturally leavened using a wild ferment, a process of combining flour and water to develop a culture that brings the bread to life. Each batch takes 36 hours to make. 12 hours for the starter to wake, 20 hours for the dough to ferment. In this time I constantly manage the dough, hand turning it to gauge its development, and then a final prove and bake from 2 to 4 hours.
Bread made in this way has a more complex flavour, can be easier to digest, and in some cases more palatable for those with intolerance's.
My other products including baguettes and pastries do use bakers yeast, but they all have a small amount of the wild ferment in them, and I am experimenting all the time to replace bakers yeast with wild yeast in all the products. I'm also very keen on using local producers to use in my products. If you're a local producer please do get in touch.
I also want to provide a decent gluten free selection, its a personal mission of mine to perfect a sourdough gluten free loaf, but I want to produce as much as possible for everyone to enjoy.