It’s a sleepy Saturday morning for most people, but not for Iris, who has to feed her many pets before Aunt Mary arrives. Iris likes to call Aunt Mary “Plant Mary” because she is a plant scientist.
Today Aunt Mary wants to experiment with making whole wheat sourdough bread from scratch! As the family kitchen transforms into a bread lab, Iris is surprised that bread needs only four ingredients—flour, water, salt and starter. She also learns about the invisible microbes that make the dough rise, and how flour comes from wheat grown by farmers. It all seems magical, but it’s really science.
Kim Binczewski and Bethany Econopouly, plant researchers at The Bread Lab at Washington State University, Mount Vernon, make their picture-book debut with this mouth-watering story that captures the step-by-step process and delicious aromas, sensations, sights and sounds of bread-making. The playful art of Hayelin Choi, illustrator ofAlice Waters and the Trip to Delicious, crackle and pop with fun, to inspire new bakers and young scientists alike!
Published in Cooperation with The Bread Lab at Washington State University, Mount Vernon. Sponsored by the Bread Bakers Guild of America.
Kim Binczewski is the managing director of the Bread Lab at Washington State University in Mount Vernon, where her work includes field research, community outreach, and connecting farmers with bakers, chefs and businesses. She grew up on a small farm in western New York and studied Environmental Science in college. She lives in Bellingham, Washington. This is her first picture book.
Bethany Econopouly has a PhD from Washington State University and an MS from Colorado State University, both in agricultural sciences. She previously worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle. She currently lives near Philadelphia. This is her first picture book.
Hayelin Choi made her illustration debut withAlice Waters and the Trip to Delicious, which earned a starred review fromSchool Library Journal. She was born and raised in Gwacheon, South Korea. A visual storyteller, she studied illustration at the School of Visual Arts in New York City and is pursuing a graduate degree in graphic design at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, where she lives.
"Bread lovers are in for a treat!... This attractive book is a solid addition to an elementary library collection. Young bakers will enjoy learning about the science of bread making and will be eager to try the recipe included."—School Library Journal “Sensory details of sounds, smells and tastes throughout the story intrigue readers and the facts about bread are organically introduced… A fun way to introduce food science and bread making to young readers."—Kirkus Reviews "Choi’s soft, warm cartoon illustrations add levity to Binczewski and Econopouly’s winsome, pun-filled text and help illuminate not only the steps involved but also some of the science; one memorable spread depicts greedy microbes burping as they chow down.... Curious culinarily inclined kiddos will want to take a bite out of this."—Booklist "This engaging picture book about the science and joy of making bread is named for Washington State University’s influential Bread Lab and co-written by its managing director, Kim Binczewski, and agricultural scientist Bethany Econopouly. Illustrated lovingly by Hayelin Choi, this book should inspire folks of all ages to explore the world of sourdough baking."—EATER Seattle "This picture book captures the science and fun of breadmaking as Iris discovers the ingredients, process, and flavor of baking homemade bread."—FoodTank: The Food Think Tank “A good way to introduce students to bread, wheat, and the science of baking.”—American Farm Bureau Foundation of Agriculture “Bread Lab engages readers in at least a baker's dozen ways. From the sweet story full of science to the recipe and resources at the very end. It's sure to be a hit with food educators of every variety.”—Whatcom County (WA) Farm to School "Bread Lab! will make you hungry for homemade bread! This is one book youknead in your children's collection."—Amber Scott, Founding Executive Director, Food Literacy Center "Best with a slice of butter with a warm loaf of fresh sourdough, this is a warm, well-leavened addition to any elementary library food collection."—Craig Seasholes, Seattle school librarian, President, Washington Library Association