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It’s 2021, and the Happy Monk is Back!

Greetings, friends!

I hope all is well and that you are thriving as best you can be in these strange times.

Jennifer and I have led a quiet few weeks with no agenda, other than domestic chores, a couple of masked, sanitized, and distanced trips into Victoria. I’ve chopped some wood, built some fires to warm the house, cleaned up some fallen branches and trees, made some soups, even made a few loaves of bread.

We survived a few storms, too, as I hope all of you have. I had lots of bracing swims in the icy waters of Boundary Pass. The water is dark; the currents are a little sluggish. It’s deep winter. Each season, here on this island, is my favourite season.

But the stirrings of Spring are not far off.

And I have just emerged from my rest break as your Happy Monk baker! It suddenly seems we’ve all been apart too long: all of you, me, and the living dough. One day this past week, I awoke and felt creaky around the idea of mixing dough again and wondered if I’d forgotten the paces, all the details. I was suddenly eager to get my hands into something and baked three five-pound miches just to feel Mildrith’s fire and chase the heat of the bread-baking window. I wondered about new bread formulas, pastries, bagels, and other goods. Eager, too, to re-connect with all of you, my wonderful Pender Island friends.

I’ve had a sound slumber, and it’s time to shake off the cobwebs and get busy again. We are renewed!

Let me tell you what’s up!

One bake per week

I was so tired leading up to the Christmas break that I knew I needed more time to breathe. Three consecutive weeks of record bread orders, two early morning bakes per week, day trips to Metchosin to pick up flour and grain, managing the website and blog. You all know I love it, but there’s no getting around it. The baking life is wearing, and I’m not getting younger!

I could save myself a lot of stress by moving to one bake a week instead of two, so that’s what I’ll be doing starting this week. More time to breathe, more time to think, more time to enjoy life. More love flowing into the dough. One bake per week, Friday bread pick-up at all the usual places.

Friday bread days

Bread days will be Fridays.

This week, however, bread day will be SaturdayJennifer and I have an important medical appointment in town, Wednesday/Thursday. So I will move the bread pick-up day to Saturday for this week only. After that, it will resume on Fridays, as always.

Rest assured, I will send reminder emails about pick-up days and locations to all those with orders.

Same bread choices, alternating weeks

People tell me they love the bread choices offered by the Happy Monk. Let’s continue with that.

The schedule will be a little different, though. Mildrith can only handle 60 loaves in any given bake. I’d like to give her the space she needs to produce quality loaves.

Thus, the two standard loaves, Salish Sourdough and Seed Feast, will be available in week one, the Baker’s Choice will be available in week two. Week one, week two. Standard loaves alternate with Baker’s Choice.

The new schedule will allow me to be a little more creative with Baker’s Choice and the opportunity to roll out new products, like bagels, croissants, rolls. Lots of experimentation going on.

No more bread subscriptions

I’ve decided to stop the subscription option. While there is convenience in the four-week subscription service, only a small handful of people use it. A few customers have also had issues trying to renew their subscriptions, and in trying to fix them, I’ve spent a lot of time on the phone with tech support.

So, rather than spend more time on the phone with tech support, I’ve decided to cancel it.

If you’re in the middle of a subscription carried over from December, you’ll be credited then notified when the subscription has expired.

Payment options will continue to be credit cards if ordered online through the website, e-transfer or cash.

Farmer’s Market in the Spring

I’ve been experimenting with new breads, pastries, bagels, bialys. The logical venue for these products, I think, would be the Farmer’s Market. And after two years of order-based baking, I’ve developed a curiosity for the market this Spring.

I will keep doing the order-based business, with the usual drop-off/pick-up locations on Fridays. That’s the core of Happy Monk and always will be! The Farmer’s Market is aimed at a different group, and I won’t be there every week. We’ll see where it leads!

What bread this week?

We’ll start this week with your choice of the two standard Happy Monk loaves: the Salish Sourdough or the Seed Feast. You know them well! Let me know what you’d like for this Saturday by clicking here.

I’ll have an all-new Baker’s Choice loaf available next week. Stay tuned!

And lastly: For your listening pleasure

Mark Dyck, a podcaster and baker’s friend, caught up with me a few weeks ago and invited me on his show: Rise Up: The Baker’s Podcast!

What an honour, I’ll tell you! Mark is a recent Victoria émigré from Regina, Saskatchewan, where he used to own the Orange Boot Bakery. One of his projects, nowadays, is the Rise Up Podcast which, over the past few years, has featured a “who’s who” of baking world rock stars. Think Jeffrey Hamelman, author of Bread, A Baker’s Book of Techniques and Recipes, the definitive book on North American bread and baking. Not to mention other great baker/authors Daniel Leader, Peter Reinhart, Josie Baker, the list goes on.

Mark thinks every baker has a story, so he mixes the rock stars with micro bakers like me! He was interested in Mildreth, the Happy Monk cob oven, and asked about how she was built and how she performs. We compare our wood-fired experiences as well as the joys of being community-oriented bakers.

Have a listen! Let me know what you think!

Click here to listen to my conversation with Mark on Rise Up: The Podcast. Or listen look it up on Apple Podcasts, TuneIn, Stitcher, Google Play, Spotify or where ever you get your podcasts. Be sure to leave a comment!


Happy Monk Tidings - February 24, 2021 🍞 - Happy Monk Blog: The Honest Baker; Bread choices this week: Salish Sourdough or Seed Feast - [ See link in profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - February 24, 2021 🍞 - Happy Monk Blog: The Honest Baker; Bread choices this week: Salish Sourdough or Seed Feast - [ See link in profile ] ...

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Happy Monk Tidings - February 17, 2021 🍞 - Baker's Choice Week: Mountain Rye; Blog: A Hard-Earned Homecoming - [See link in Profile]

Happy Monk Tidings - February 17, 2021 🍞 - Baker's Choice Week: Mountain Rye; Blog: A Hard-Earned Homecoming - [See link in Profile] ...

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Check out the Happy Monk being interviewed on (@madbaker)Mark Dyck’s Rise Up Podcast ... wherever you get your podcasts! Scintillating conversation for baking nerds and wood-fired oven enthusiasts!
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#baking #bakingpodcast #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredbaking #cobovens #breadbaking #breadmaker #bakery #bakinglife #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #happymonkbaker #penderisland #southpenderisland #penderislandbc #podcast
@earth.oven

Check out the Happy Monk being interviewed on (@madbaker)Mark Dyck’s Rise Up Podcast ... wherever you get your podcasts! Scintillating conversation for baking nerds and wood-fired oven enthusiasts!
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#baking #bakingpodcast #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredbaking #cobovens #breadbaking #breadmaker #bakery #bakinglife #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #happymonkbaker #penderisland #southpenderisland #penderislandbc #podcast
@earth.oven
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Happy Monk Tidings - Dec. 16, 2020 - Happy Monk Blog: Time to Hang Up the Baker's Peel for 2020; Baker's Choice: Fruit Sourdough [ See link in profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - Dec. 16, 2020 - Happy Monk Blog: Time to Hang Up the Baker's Peel for 2020; Baker's Choice: Fruit Sourdough [ See link in profile ] ...

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Salish Country Loaves tumbling out of Mildrith, the wood-fired oven this morning. There are a few extras, so if you’re interested, I’ll be at Medicine Beach until 2pm today (Friday, Dec. 11)!
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#woodfired #woodfiredoven #coboven #Mildrith #Mildriththeoven #woodfiredovenbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #breadporn #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderislands #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany

Salish Country Loaves tumbling out of Mildrith, the wood-fired oven this morning. There are a few extras, so if you’re interested, I’ll be at Medicine Beach until 2pm today (Friday, Dec. 11)!
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#woodfired #woodfiredoven #coboven #Mildrith #Mildriththeoven #woodfiredovenbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #breadporn #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderislands #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany
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Happy Monk Tidings - Dec. 11, 2020 - Baker's Choice this week: Fig and Fennel Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: Praise the Rain! [ See link in profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - Dec. 11, 2020 - Baker's Choice this week: Fig and Fennel Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: Praise the Rain! [ See link in profile ] ...

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Volkornbrot casts a long shadow … getting bagged up for deliveries today. The aroma of 100% rye in the kitchen is otherworldly! I’m walking around in a trance.
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#volkornbrot #rye #ryebread #ryebreadlove #sourdough #sourdoughbread #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #woodfiredbread #coboven #bread #breadlove #baker #bbga #happymonkbaker #happymonkbaking #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #realbread #rusticbread #penderisland #southpenderisland

Volkornbrot casts a long shadow … getting bagged up for deliveries today. The aroma of 100% rye in the kitchen is otherworldly! I’m walking around in a trance.
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#volkornbrot #rye #ryebread #ryebreadlove #sourdough #sourdoughbread #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #woodfiredbread #coboven #bread #breadlove #baker #bbga #happymonkbaker #happymonkbaking #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #realbread #rusticbread #penderisland #southpenderisland
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See you in the morning, Mildrith!
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#woodfiredovens #woodfiredbread #woodfired #sourdoughbread #baker #bakersofinstagram #bakersoven #woodfiredovenlove #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southpenderisland #penderisland #penderislandbc

See you in the morning, Mildrith!
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#woodfiredovens #woodfiredbread #woodfired #sourdoughbread #baker #bakersofinstagram #bakersoven #woodfiredovenlove #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany #southpenderisland #penderisland #penderislandbc
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Happy Monk Tidings - Bread 🍞 and Blog 💻 - Baker's Choice: Volkornbrot - German Rye; Happy Monk Blog: The Good People of Pender - [ See link in profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - Bread 🍞 and Blog 💻 - Baker's Choice: Volkornbrot - German Rye; Happy Monk Blog: The Good People of Pender - [ See link in profile ] ...

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Making this Olive Loaf is almost as delicious as eating it. Marinated Kalamata and Haldiki with zested lemons and spices. 
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#wildyeast #michaeljamesbakes #tivolirdbakery #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #realbread #rusticbread #woodfired #woodfiredbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany

Making this Olive Loaf is almost as delicious as eating it. Marinated Kalamata and Haldiki with zested lemons and spices.
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#wildyeast #michaeljamesbakes #tivolirdbakery #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #realbread #rusticbread #woodfired #woodfiredbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderisland #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany
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Happy Monk Tidings - Baker's Choice: Olive Loaf and Happy Monk Blog: The Joys of Firewood - [ See link in Profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - Baker's Choice: Olive Loaf and Happy Monk Blog: The Joys of Firewood - [ See link in Profile ] ...

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Breadcrumbs
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#innomine #sourdough #sourdoughbread #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #bread #breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs
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#innomine #sourdough #sourdoughbread #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #bread #breadcrumbs
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Bread love 🍞 ❤️ 🍞 

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#countrybread #countryloaf #salishsourdough #sourdough #sourdoughbread #sourdoughbaking #bread #breadlove #breadlabcollective #bbga #breadstagram #breadsofinstagram #artisanbread #baker #bakery #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #happymonkbaking #southpenderisland #southpender #penderisland #southerngulfislands

Bread love 🍞 ❤️ 🍞

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#countrybread #countryloaf #salishsourdough #sourdough #sourdoughbread #sourdoughbaking #bread #breadlove #breadlabcollective #bbga #breadstagram #breadsofinstagram #artisanbread #baker #bakery #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #happymonkbaking #southpenderisland #southpender #penderisland #southerngulfislands
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Intense little Seed loaf!
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#seedbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #sourdoughbaking #bread #breadlove #breadlabcollective #breadstagram #breadsofinstagram #artisanbread #baker #bakery #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #happymonkbaking #southpenderisland #southpender #penderisland #southerngulfislands

Intense little Seed loaf!
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#seedbread #sourdough #sourdoughbread #sourdoughbaking #bread #breadlove #breadlabcollective #breadstagram #breadsofinstagram #artisanbread #baker #bakery #happymonkbaker #happymonkbakery #happymonkbaking #southpenderisland #southpender #penderisland #southerngulfislands
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Happy Monk Tidings 🍞 - This Week's Baker's Choice: Sprouted Kamut Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: To Autumn - [ See link in Profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings 🍞 - This Week's Baker's Choice: Sprouted Kamut Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: To Autumn - [ See link in Profile ] ...

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A hint of brotgewürz, bread spice. A mix of caraway, anise, fennel and coriander lifts this seedy Mountain Rye into a different realm.
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#brotgewürz #mountainrye #wholerye #ryebread #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderislands #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany

A hint of brotgewürz, bread spice. A mix of caraway, anise, fennel and coriander lifts this seedy Mountain Rye into a different realm.
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#brotgewürz #mountainrye #wholerye #ryebread #woodfired #woodfiredoven #woodfiredovenbread #bread #realbread #naturallyleavened #baker #bakery #bbga #artisanbread #breadhead #sourdough #sourdoughbread #penderisland #southpenderislands #happymonkbaking #happymonkbakery #happymonkbakingcompany
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Happy Monk Tidings - Baker's Choice: Mountain Rye; Happy Monk Blog: Entangled Lives and the Election - [ See link in profile ]

Happy Monk Tidings - Baker's Choice: Mountain Rye; Happy Monk Blog: Entangled Lives and the Election - [ See link in profile ] ...

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Tidings from the Happy Monk 🍞 - Baker's Choice: A Warming Cinnamon Raisin Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: The Isle of Apples ... [ See Link in Profile ]

Tidings from the Happy Monk 🍞 - Baker's Choice: A Warming Cinnamon Raisin Loaf; Happy Monk Blog: The Isle of Apples ... [ See Link in Profile ] ...

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