9 August 2022
This is the weekly newsletter from Loaf in Stirchley, keeping you abreast of our bakery and cookery school, and other news we think you might be interested in.
This week we look at Monday’s Bio Arts workshop and update you on our Free Kids Lunches programme.
Also, be aware we’re closed for a fortnight from next week, so stock up the freezer!
We’ll have plenty of bread and pastries on the shelves all day, with lunches served from noon on weekdays. Scroll to the bottom for this week’s lunch menu.
Our opening hours are:
Every summer we close for a fortnight to give the building a good deep clean and to clear some holiday allowance, and that time has come.
Loaf will be closed next week and the week after, opening again on Wednesday 31 August. So if you’re lucky enough to have some freezer space you have this week to fill it up!
Pre-orders can be placed here.
When Laurie Ramsell asked us if we’d like to be involved in BAB LAB, his festival of artists working with biological materials, we immediately said yes. And so this Monday saw Loaf hosted a Yeast themed day of workshops and talks.
Laurie’s aim for the week is to encourage artists to consider working with biological materials and living things, and most of the participants were practicing artists, bringing a focussed but still playful inquisitiveness to the subject.
Martha introduces the yeast
We ran a short version of our bread course in the morning, giving a solid grounding in what yeast is and the ways we work with it to make bread, before letting them loose with some dough.
Over lunch we had a talk from Rosa Postlethwaite, a performance artist who has been using a sourdough starter in her work, focussing on it as a living creature and thinking about what it means to collaborate with it.
And then in the afternoon we had Günter Seyfried in our kitchen making “yeastograms” where shadows of UV light create images in yeast cultures. We went through the full process of making the agar to inoculate in Petri dishes and the next day had our living artworks. Here’s the Loaf logo:
Some photos from the day are on the BAB Lab Instagram. The festival continues at venues across Birmingham this week and we really hope it returns next year as it’s given us lots of ideas!
We’ve had an incredible response to our Free Kids Lunches programme this summer, reaching the capacity of what we can provide this week. We’re really happy we’ve been able top help feed a lot of kids, but us running out means there are more people out there who are struggling.
A society that allows people, especially children, to go hungry is not one we want to live in. Access to good food is right, not a privilege.
Thankfully it seems we’re not alone in thinking this. We’ve had over £400 in donations this week from those who were able, online, at the counter and in envelopes through the door. They came in all sizes — some small, some substantial, all of equal importance. We’re on track to cover our costs and the B30 Food Bank should expect a donation of the excess in September. Thanks to you all, and also to those to helped spread the word.
Emergency measures like this are important but long term change needs to happen. Please contact those able to make a change, starting with your MP.
During our shutdown we won’t be able to distribute lunches but we will do the final week of the holidays before school lunches are available again: 31 Aug — 2 Sep. There are a few left to reserve.
Remember the galetts a few months ago? They were made by Sarah on the sweet shift and she’s back this week!
Dorit will decide what’s on sale which day so look out for the following when you come in:
You lucky, lucky people!
We’re big fans of the Landworker’s Alliance, a union of farmers, growers, foresters and land-based workers with a mission is to improve livelihoods and create a better food and land-use system. They recently started a podcast which Neil has been enjoying.
The first three episodes don’t shy from the big issues, asking how we can transform our food systems, how to we get access to agricultural land, and investigating the grain crisis sparked by the war in Ukraine.
Listen here or via your favourite podcasting app.
Lunches are made fresh weekdays for 12 noon.
Our menu for the week — with ingredients and allergens — is on the website.
The following classes have vacancies as of this newsletter being posted.
Loaf’s all-day classes:
Haseen’s evening classes:
Lap’s all-day classes:
Lap’s evening classes:
We release new dates as soon as possible , based on tutor availability. You can sign up to alert lists for specific classes here.
Thanks for all your continued support. See you next week!
Team Loaf: Dorit, Rach, Sarah, Martha, Ian, Pete, Neil, Molly & Nancy
Our proof reader is on holiday this week so all mistakes are deliberate.