New to the Pantry

From time to time, I am invited to explore books and sample products for possible review on my blog. The latest treat was some bread made right here in Ontario, Canada. A slice of buttered toast is often how I start my day, so I want a loaf of bread with plenty of flavor and substance — none of those airy bland generic white breads that give you a five-minute sugar spike for me! I'm also fussy about the quality of ingredients used and the baking process. So I was eager to try some slices of this bread that looked so appealing and smelled so inviting.

The Stonemill Bakehouse in Toronto is a family bakery that began in Germany in 1907 before moving to Canada in 1982. Using whole grains, organic sourdough and slow fermentation, their breads contain no sugar, which is certainly a bonus as sugar is hardly needed unless the bread lacks flavor from inferior ingredients.

And no sugar was needed at all. I tried the Multigrain Sourdough bread. I started with a buttered slice to get an initial idea of the bread before toasting some up. The seeds and grains provide a pleasant contrast of texture and flavor and the sourdough taste lingers pleasantly after a few bites. The bread is rather rustic in texture providing a good base for sandwiches, yet still soft enough to serve up if you don't want too much crunch to your sandwich. The bread absorbs flavor without turning into a soggy mess. Because of the firm texture, a few slices would also be a fine accompaniment to a warm bowl of soup.

The bread also toasts nicely, coming out crunchy but still chewy. Toasting really brings out the flavor of the seeds too. It makes an ideal bread for grilled cheese sandwiches when that craving hits for a classic bread accompaniment.

I'm looking forward to trying some of the other offerings from Stonemill. They have a rather extensive list of different breads that includes such intriguing loaves such as Flax and Chia, Cranberry Pumpkin Seed, Hearty Bavarian Rye, and Sunflower and Walnut. They're also the first company in English Canada to introduce vitamin D into some of their breads — almost as much as in a cup of milk and more than in egg yolks or fortified orange juices. The vitamin D is a natural result of exposing the yeast to a source of light, so it's not even synthetically produced. The breads with vitamin D include the ones that I want to try above, as well as Sprouted 3 Grains & Oatmeal, 11 Whole Grains & Honey, 12 Whole Grains & Sprouted Rye, Sprouted Flax, and several of their sourdough breads like Classic French, Multigrain and Belgian Whole Wheat.

And their breads are easy to find at most of the major grocers in Ontario, with limited distribution in Quebec and Canada. Those outside these areas can visit Stonemill via their Facebook page and they'll let you know if there's a store in your area. It's worth the small amount of time to find out.

Disclaimer: I received a sample of this bread for possible review on my blog and was compensated for writing this post. The opinions expressed here are my own.

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