The doughy dozen include:
Ilgin Beaton was born and raised in Turkey, where life revolved around wholesome home-cooked food. She is passionate about inspiring others to make their own Real Bread. As the owner of Just Sourdough, she runs sourdough baking workshops from her home in Sevenoaks, Kent. In June 2021, she received the Bronze Award in the Enriched Sourdough category of the Scottish Bread Championships at the Royal Highland Show.
Peter Cook has been a professional baker for nearly 30 years. He’s the co-founder, director and head baker at Peter Cooks Bread, an award-winning wholesale bakery sharing Real Bread and pastries with the people of Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
Aba Edwards-Idun is a self-taught hobbyist baker. While she always loved baking bread, it was during lockdown that she really developed a passion for sourdough. She also enjoys learning more about Real Bread from different cultures around the world. When she's not baking, Aba is a lawyer in the City of London.
Marcia Harris is a former professional baker who specialises in natural leavens. She now teaches children about baking, food growing and cooking as part of pastoral care at a primary school in Islington, London. Marcia is also a chef tutor, teaching sustainable food practice for the National Food Service, London’s Community Cooks programme, and runs her own community-based bread making workshops.
Aidan Monks got his first taste of baking from his grandfather, a baker in the heart of the Lake District, and studied at Blackpool College. Aidan later gained a scholarship at the Boston College of Culinary Arts, Massachusetts, where he rediscovered his love of Real Bread. In 2010, he co-founded Lovingly Artisan in Plumgarths in Cumbria, specialising in handcrafted, slow-fermented, traditional sourdough bread for the wholesale and service sectors. This was swiftly followed with a microbakery at Altrincham Market with his wife, Catherine Connor.
Charlotte Nemeth is the co-owner of multi-award-winning Seasons Bakery in Ingleton, North Yorkshire. She calls herself “a baker’s wife and a firm believer in encouraging green bakeries. I have changed our bakery to start becoming palm oil-free and we recycle 99% of our waste. I’m also a firm believer in the health benefits of Real Bread and a passionate sourdough eater – baking it is my husband’s department.”
Dara and Ciara O’hArtghaile own Ursa Minor Bakehouse in Ballycastle on the North Coast of Northern Ireland. They founded their Real Bread bakery in 2014 with the aim “to produce some of the best bread and pastries found on these isles.” They are also members of Real Bread Ireland and part of the Économusée project, which is designed to showcase traditional crafts and help artisans tell their stories.
Connor Rose has been baking bread for home, community and friends since the mid-noughties. He has a real passion for social justice work and specifically the accessibility of good food. According to Rose, “Real Bread is one of the building blocks of restorative food justice.”
Lydia Schofield is a self-proclaimed ‘breadhead’, whose obsession with sourdough and vegan baking turned into a career. Always looking for the next way to evolve their baking, she is either reading, watching videos or talking nonstop about bread. She has worked in several bakeries in the south of England and currently are creating new twists on traditional recipes at Birch Bread in Pangbourne.
Eddy Sleiman is the founder and head baker at Ed Baker, a start-up microbakery in Greenwich, London. He has always had the passion for heritage food and his travels tend to be food-destination-centric as research to help him deliver unique culinary experiences. Sleiman founded Ed Baker during the lockdowns of 2020 and now runs a food stall at the weekly Blackheath Farmers’ Market. He plans to move into permanent commercial premises later in 2021.
Ben Tyler-Wray worked as a chef in Lyon, France, before joining Celtic Bakers and can be found at the various London markets selling Soil Association certified organic sourdough and yeasted loaves.
Cindy Zurias was born and raised in Venezuela. Having taken a degree in gastronomy, she relocated to the UK to seek new challenges, working through sections and up the ranks in some of London’s best Michelin-starred restaurants. A passion for sourdough drew Zurias into the world of baking, rising to head baker and managing one of London’s largest artisan bakeries. She is now a consultant in bakery management, working with some of the biggest names in artisan bread.
The new ambassadors have been tasked to promote the Knead to Know...more crowdfunding campaign to publish the expanded 10th anniversary edition of the Real Bread Campaign’s microbakery handbook. Having risen past the basic target in under three days, plans are now in progress for a pay-it-forward scheme in support of budding bready businessfolk who need a leg up.
Cindy Zurias will be joining the Campaign’s coordinator Chris Young on the Theatre of Food stage at the Latitude festival (22-25 July at Henham Park, Suffolk) to host a demo and as a panellist for a debate about non-commodity grains and pulses.
The Campaign continues to work towards improving the inclusion and representation of a greater diversity of people in its network, and later this year, plans to start conversations on specific topics, including inviting people to use the Campaign’s platform to tell their stories, share their knowledge and air their views; shifting perception of what Real Bread is; and examining how the Campaign can help people get involved in the rise of Real Bread.