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avatar for William Rubel

William Rubel

William Rubel has been making bread since he was eleven years old. For decades, he has been studying the history of bread, and examining where traditional foodways and culinary history intersect.

William travels the world studying food customs and gathering recipes.Inspired by the antique iron fireplace cooking tools he purchased at a flea market in Paris in his twenties, William has since traveled to Eastern Europe, Africa, and Asia and has fallen in love with cooking with live fire.

William writes on a wide range of subjects from bread to wild mushrooms, and from hearth cooking to kitchen gardening.He is the author of The Magic of Fire: Cooking on the Open Hearthand Bread: A Global History. William is a regular contributor to Mother Earth Newswhere he has published a diverse array of articles on hearth cooking, making butter at home, the heirloom red Italian flint corn Floriani, and how to make wonderful, simple homemade breads. William mills and refines most of his own flour and takes a relaxed, improvisational approach to baking. He bakes bread (and many of his meals) in his outdoor bread oven.

William also writes for other publications, usually articles that relate to culinary culture and history. As an example, William is the principle author of an article in Economic Botany on the edibility of "Amanita muscaria," the red mushroom with white dots that lends its pattern to so many products and children's story illustrations. William also has an ongoing project researching the smoke cured and fermented milk of the Samburu of Northern Kenya.

Forty-seven years ago, William founded Stone Soup, a literary magazine and website written and illustrated by kids through age 13. Stone Soup has been inspiring children to read, write and create their own artworks for publication in their magazine since 1973.

William has recently begun a Thursday Bread History Seminar Series and has hosted twenty-one virtual talks so far.
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