Modernist Bread School

We’ve been secretly kneading something special for you the past few months. To celebrate the release of Modernist Bread at Home, we are excited to offer you free bread school courses delivered straight to your inbox. Meet the Modernist Bread School—your gateway to mastering the art of bread making from the comfort of your own kitchen.

Our bread school is designed to cater to both novice bakers and those looking to refine their skills, offering courses that will help you make delicious home-baked loaves. Each lesson will provide invaluable tips, tricks, knowledge, and discoveries, collected and developed after years of extensive research, to enrich your bread-making journey.

If you already have a copy of Modernist Bread at Home, this bread school will serve as an excellent companion course. Don’t worry if you haven’t acquired the cookbook yet, you can still join us and glean valuable insights.


You’ll be able to sign up through the Modernist Bread School page on our website. Upon signing up, you’ll receive one lesson per day throughout the course, typically consisting of five to seven lessons.

Each course will provide recommended tips, insights from Modernist Bread at Home, and references to related recipes and blogs for further reading.

We’ll launch a new course each month. You can sign up for all of them or pick and choose what topics interest you the most.


We’re excited to announce that we’ll be launching a new course every month for the next few months, starting in early March. Stay tuned for a continuous stream of exciting learning opportunities.

  • Course 1: Getting Started with Bread Basics—Dive into essential tools, preparation techniques, and pantry stocking tips to kick-start your bread-making journey.
  • Course 2: Navigating Bread Making from Start to Finish—Learn the most crucial aspects of each step of the baking process.
  • Course 3: Fitting Bread into Busy Schedules—Learn how to manage your baking time effectively, even amid a hectic schedule.
  • Course 4: The Role of Different Bread Ingredients—Explore the scientific foundations of bread ingredients to refine your recipes and techniques.
  • Course 5: How to Start a Levain and Keep It Alive—Delve into the world of sourdough with essential strategies for crafting and maintaining your sourdough starter.
  • Course 6: Scoring and Shaping—Unravel the art of scoring and shaping bread to create beautifully crafted loaves.

Our first course, Getting Started with Bread Basics, is scheduled to launch March 11. Stay tuned!

Introducing Modernist Bread at Home—Your Guide to Exceptional Homemade Bread

Modernist Bread at Home cover photo

There is so much to be gained from baking your own bread. It’s both physically and mentally satisfying, an outlet for creativity and innovation, and just plain comforting (seriously, is there anything more comforting than warm homemade toast with butter?). That’s why we are thrilled to unveil our upcoming cookbook, Modernist Bread at Home—the ultimate guide for home bakers eager to create exceptional bread. You can order it now in North America through the Modernist Cuisine Shop and Amazon. French, German, Italian, and Spanish editions are now available in North America as well. It is also available to view and purchase at the Modernist Cuisine Gallery by Nathan Myhrvold locations.

It’s hard to believe we released Modernist Bread nearly seven years ago. Since then, we’ve received a lot of feedback about creating a version of the book specifically for home bakers and have been quietly working on just that over the last few years. With years of dedicated research and meticulous experimentation, we’ve distilled the expertise of Modernist Bread into a comprehensive 420-page volume that streamlines the art and science of making bread at home.

Much like how Modernist Cuisine at Home is to Modernist Cuisine,this book is designed specifically for home bakers so that you can create extraordinary bread in the comfort of your own kitchen regardless of how much experience or time you have. You’ll discover delicious, easy-to-follow recipes, innovative yet practical techniques, helpful scientific insights, and useful visual guides. Everything has been tested (and retested over and over again) with our unique brand of rigor to ensure you’ll get great results with a home oven.

One of our biggest goals for Modernist Bread at Home was to make it as accessible as possible. We’ve worked hard to address the needs of home bakers as well as the realistic challenges that come with making bread, a time and labor-intensive food, in your own kitchen. We know, for example, that life easily gets in the way of making bread in the middle of the week. With that in mind, we developed time-saving tips and strategies, like freezing leftover levain so that you can use it as a flavor booster. The inactive levain can be added to direct doughs (doughs made with instant yeast), evoking sourdough flavor in much less time.

There are plenty of invaluable skills to master, bringing a new level of confidence to your baking every step of the way. With Modernist Bread at Home, you’ll learn how to make beautiful loaves of homemade bread that fit within your weekly schedule and have a depth of flavor beyond what you’ll find in the store—and you can proudly say that you’ve made it with your own hands. We’re incredibly proud of this cookbook, and hope that you’ll love it as much as we do.

Here’s a sneak peek into what you can expect from Modernist Bread at Home:


Modernist Bread at Home features over 160 extensively tested, easy-to-follow recipes that span the world of bread. You’ll learn how to make:

  • Rustic sourdoughs
  • Traditional French lean breads
  • Sandwich breads
  • Brioches
  • Ryes
  • Challah
  • Focaccia
  • Bagels
  • Bao
  • Gluten-free breads

Some highlights include our innovative recipes for Second-Change Sourdough, No-Knead Brioche, 100% High-Ryes, and gluten-free bagels.


Great care went into designing how the recipes are formatted in this book. The unique layout makes it easy to follow, understand, and prep for recipes. An illustrated tour breaks down the format and essential information before you get started.

Recipes of Modernist Bread at Home


The techniques in this book were developed with home bakers of all experience levels in mind. Whether it’s new ways of utilizing tools already found in your kitchen, enhancing the flavor of bread with pressure-caramelized inclusions, or using our dough CPR method to rescue overproofed dough, there’s information that both well-seasoned home bakers and complete novices will find helpful. We even discovered ways to speed up bread making, as in our Second-Chance Sourdough or a more straightforward traditional French brioche, so that you can still have fresh bread even with a busy schedule.

Modernist Bread at Home


Don’t know where to start? That’s okay. Modernist Bread at Home features helpful visual guides for:

  • Getting the most out of our recipe format
  • Planning how to fit bread making into your schedule
  • Choosing what bread to make based on your skill level, how much time you have, and what kind of bread you’d like to add to your repertoire
  • Essential gear for baking bread in a home kitchen. All the tools are easy for home bakers to find. The biggest recommended investment is a $40 cast-iron combination cooker that delivers spectacular results for crisp-crust breads
  • Step-by-step technique tutorials
  • Troubleshooting common issues throughout the bread-making process


To keep your hardcopy pristine, Modernist Bread at Home comes with a wire-bound recipe manual that contains all the recipes and reference tables.

Regardless of your baking experience, Modernist Bread at Home empowers you to create bread that’s beyond compare. We believe that bread making should be an accessible experience for everyone, and this book is your key to achieving just that.

Order your copy of Modernist Bread at Home today.

Presenting the Modernist Cuisine Bread School

We’ve got even more to be excited about. To kick off the release of Modernist Bread at Home we’re launching free bread school courses delivered straight to your inbox.

Tailored for home baking enthusiasts eager to refine their skills, our monthly courses are designed to complement the book and help you throughout the bread-making process. Our courses will cover beginner essentials for novice bakers, mastering the art of creating and nurturing a levain, making bread during a busy schedule, and much more – we’ve got it all covered.

Be the first to know when the Modernist Cuisine Bread School launches by following us on social media and subscribing to our monthly newsletter.

Common Mixing Dough Problems

Mixing dough for both bread and pizza can undoubtedly pose challenges, which can leave aspiring pizzaioli and bakers feeling discouraged. Dough that’s sticky, dried out, overmixed, or undermixed might seem disheartening at times. But remember, even seasoned pizzaioli and bakers have faced these hurdles. We say embrace the learning process and experiment with different techniques and recipes. Over time, you’ll develop a keen understanding of dough mixing and how to troubleshoot issues when they arise.

Mixing is an essential part of the dough process. Although gluten is a self-organizing protein, that doesn’t mean you can pour water on flour and walk away, hoping the dough will develop. You have to give it a little jump start to distribute the ingredients evenly. That jump start involves mixing. The most important function of mixing is to force the flour to hydrate, which unleashes a cascade of chemical reactions. Hydration, not kneading, is what allows the gluten network to develop.

Hydration can be accomplished slowly by simply combining the ingredients and allowing the flour to absorb the water over time, or faster by manipulating the dough by hand, or in minutes by machines. The faster the mix, the faster the hydration, the faster the dough develops. You can learn more about both in chapter 6 of Modernist Pizza.

Although combining a few ingredients seems like a simple thing, there are often still many challenges and problems that arise. Once you understand what not to do, you’ll also understand what sorts of things can go wrong.

Below, we cover some common mixing problems, why they happen, and how to fix them.

Undermixed Dough

Problem: Undermixed dough won’t fully hydrate because the water is unevenly distributed. Properly mixed dough should look homogenous, with no noticeable clumps of flour or pools of liquid.

Solution: Continue mixing to remedy this problem.

The Dough Has Dried Out

Problem: Dough exposed to air will begin to dry on the surface and form a skin. This reduces the extensibility (stretch) of the dough, forcing it to crack as it ferments or is manipulated.

Solution: To avoid this, keep the dough covered at all times. You can use a slightly damp kitchen towel, a plastic tarp, or even a large, clean plastic trash bag to protect your dough. If you’re using a plastic tub, cover it with a lid.

Climbing the Hook

Problem: Dough wrapping up the hook happens if the mixer is left unattended.

Solution: Be sure to keep an eye on the mixer so that you can stop the machine and push the dough down the hook, then continue mixing.


Problem: If you’ve overmixed your dough—that is, if you’ve gone beyond full gluten development but the dough hasn’t quite broken down—your dough might be salvaged.

Solution: For doughs raised with levain, simply let the dough relax for a long time in the refrigerator.

For yeast-raised doughs, it’s a little trickier because the yeast will continue to ferment the dough even in the refrigerator. (This will occur in a levain-based dough as well, but to a lesser extent.)

If the dough is overmixed to the point that it’s leaching water and has become ropy, try this method: mix a half batch of dough, minus the salt. Allow your dough to autolyze for 20 minutes, then add the salt. Add this new dough to the overmixed dough, mixing on low speed until just combined. Proceed with bulk fermentation (if applicable); it may take longer than planned. The final pizza won’t be exactly as you had mixed it correctly, but it will be close.

The Complete Disaster

The only remedy for some mixing errors is to simply start over. Luckily, dough ingredients are relatively inexpensive, and the mixing process is fast enough that you’ll probably still have time to make your pizza. Fatal errors like these usually stem from human fallibility: the pizza maker might have misread a measurement, transposed a number, or otherwise strayed from protocol. To avoid such mistakes, the first time you make a recipe, check off each step when you complete it. At the very least, this will show you later where you went wrong.

Most importantly, don’t get discouraged during your baking journey. Mixing dough does not come without challenges, even though it may seem that combining four ingredients is a simple thing to do. Learning to mix dough can be a journey of trial and improvement. You’re enhancing your skills and knowledge every time you make pizza or bread. Even if it doesn’t come out the way you’d hoped, it’s a chance to improve your technique; every attempt brings you closer to consistently making outstanding doughs.

Try out some of our recipes below:

As always, please share your homemade pizzas and bread with us on social media! Let us know if any of these tips helped save your own dough.