Bakers, their suppliers and other industry experts offer advice on a range of topics.

A toast to flavour

“Play around with different combinations of seed – our heritage multi-seed bread is packed full of nine different seeds, all pre-toasted to deliver the maximum power house! If you don’t toast the seeds make sure you rehydrate before adding to your dough to help deliver the perfect hydrated bread.”

Paul Rhodes, founder, Paul Rhodes Bakery

Dough-not settle

“Don’t be afraid to tweak your dough. Understand the dough and how you want it to perform. Make sure you use the best-quality ingredients you can afford and don’t rush things – respect the time it takes.”

Heather Kaniuk, director/chef, Longboys

Getting fruity

“Rhubarb is quite versatile, so it can be used in hot cross buns, cereal bars and cakes. It’s best to use a low level of red fruit, like raspberry, as an inclusion to lift the red notes of the rhubarb up.”

Dave Twiss, managing director, House of Flavours

Fusion food

“Hybrid desserts and cakes only work if the two elements are recognisable, as you need to deliver well-known favourites in a different way. Look at what makes the product great and enhance it with another element which complements. A good hybrid will challenge the customer’s perceptions of the desserts with flavours and textures they wouldn’t normally associate.”

Nigel Cave, development director, Mademoiselle Desserts

A changing climate

“Global weather patterns and extremes in climate change are affecting crop rates, so bakers would be wise to pre-order as much dried fruit as possible to ensure they have enough stocks to meet demand. It’s always wise to be aware of alternative suppliers and consider switching source countries if stocks are unavailable.”

Tasneem Alonzo, joint managing director, EHL Ingredients