We meet with Head Bakers David Nderitu and Leander Blom of BBROOD; a newly opened bakery originating in Amsterdam. David and Leander tell us a bit about what it takes to bake their delicious breads.
From the minute you walk into BBROOD’s Magadi Road branch, you can tell it’s not your ordinary baked goods mill. Machines whir and pastry chefs move about their tasks gracefully, a harmonious part of the tableaux of this open-plan bakery. Displayed behind a large glass counter, an array of eye catching pastries court your eye. Clients pop in and out for their daily breads and savouries, or sit and catch up over a steaming coffee and pastry.
Brood, Dutch for bread, is a company keen on changing the bakery scene in Nairobi one slice at a time. Founded in Netherlands in 2008 by Renee Pater, Johan Pater and Rin van der Molen, BBROOD has spread across East Africa with stores in Kampala, Kigali and now Nairobi. Their aim is to provide their clients with fresh, healthy, artisan bread made with high quality ingredients.
At BBROOD, bread is prepared according to traditionally-inspired recipes, carefully crafted by their founder Renee Pater. Variations to the original Dutch recipe, cater to the difference in temperature and altitude between Netherlands and Kenya. Unlike other bakeries in Kenya, BBROOD doesn’t use yeast to raise their bread. Instead, BBROOD opts for the sourdough process. While yeast takes around 3 hours to develop, the sourdough process takes close to two days – a slow but rewarding process that allows for the development of flavour and aroma. Once the dough has risen, they mould it by hand, put it in a cloth for proofing and bake it in a stone-floor oven to get a crispy crust and a delicious rich taste.
The Nairobi team is led by Head Bakers Leander Blom and David Nderitu, a dynamic duo who churn out over 180 of the BBROOD’s signature sourdough loaves every day. The two share similar stories of how they got into baking. David, 40,credits his journey to his father, also a baker, who every morning for breakfast would treat his family to warm and aromatic loaves of fresh bread. As a child David enjoyed learning from his father and after completing college, decided to take up the craft and become a full-time baker. Leander’s grandfather and father are both pastry bakers in the Netherlands and greatly inspired his passion for baking. Soon after he graduated from high school, he joined a baking school where he honed his skills as a baker. After working at a few bakeries, Leander settled at BBROOD in 2013. Leander later moved to Kenya early this year, teaming up with David as Head Bakers of BBROOD’s newest location.
While working at BBROOD, the two bakers have had the chance to discover new bread-making techniques. David tells us his favourite bread is their spelt bread, made from special spelt that is rich in fiber, packed with nutrients and has an unbeatable taste. Leander instead, confesses he can’t get enough of his delicious sourdough cornbread which, he tells us, tastes amazing with some excellent cheddar cheese.
Both David and Leander agree that despite the hard work and odd hours, baking is their greatest aspiration. They describe how when it comes to baking no day is the same, a constant challenge to maintain consistency while churning out high quality, great tasting loaves. Seeing BBROOD’s bread come to life and have a place in the homes of Nairobians, is David’s and Leander’s pride and joy and drives them to push harder every day. As such, we asked them to share a few of their delicious bread recipes for us to try at home. Be sure to check them out .