Autumn is harvest season and at The Natural Bakery, this means that it’s time to gather the fruits of the effort put into the Grain Project, an initiative started by the company last year and which aims to source Irish wheat and other cereals from local farms.
“The wheat variety is sparrow, it’s a spring wheat” explains Luke Creighan, The Natural Bakery’s owner and director, who adds that once the wheat is sourced, they get it “milled in-house by bakers, on a stone mill we got from Austria last year.”
Regarding the exact origin of the wheat, Luke explains that it comes from a farm in Newcastle, Co. Dublin, run by his uncle Vincent, so they “know exactly in which field it was grown in and when it was harvested.”
As Luke worked there for one summer when he was younger, he points out that it’s great to buy from them now and adds that he’s delighted to be able to use locally sourced ingredients from trusted suppliers. “We are working on planting new types of grains for next year’s harvest. The grain project is all about trying to grow crops that we can use in our breads, that are grown and milled locally and that make our breads better.”
Due to the characteristics of the local crop, wholemeal flour has been the first and most important result from this project and Luke adds that all of his brown and wholemeal breads are made with 100% Irish wheat. They’re currently testing and developing other types of flours as well.
Bread from the Grain Project as well as 100% Irish wheat flour and wholewheat grains are available now at the company’s 11 bakeries.
For more information visit thenaturalbakery.ie