Slow and steady wins the sourdough race

Posted: 9 April 2021 | | No comments yet

Bread isn’t going out of fashion any time soon, and one baking company is hoping its gently fermented sourdough will be a hit with health-conscious consumers.

sourdough is made by fermenting yeast for 12 months

As a nation, we have always been a huge lover of baked goods, although the once standard ‘wrapped bread from a large brand’ has fallen out of favour. With so many processed breads using high-activity yeast for faster production, consumers have started to steer away for fear of bloating.

Instead, attention is diverted towards more natural and honest ingredients, with consumers opting for artisanal and traditionally-baked breads. Additive-free offerings and slow fermentation that is gentle on the stomach are rising in popularity.

Sourdough or sour-faux?

At Jason’s we wanted to bring artisanal sourdough to everyone, not only people who live near a bakery and can afford it once in a while. We only use ingredients that are needed and do not include additives, preservatives or added sugars.

There are many processed high-activity yeast loaves with descriptions such as ‘with sourdough’ and we wanted to stay far away from this. Our sourdough is 100 percent real and natural using traditional 24-hour fermentation processes which gives it its gentle nature.

Since launching in M&S stores in March 2020, our brand has received huge positivity; and as we enter 2021, we continue to look at expanding our range of loaves to incorporate trending flavours with our growing audience. With consumers increasingly seeking tasty alternatives in alignment with healthy lifestyles, we foresee products that offer health benefits, such as a reduction in sugar and gut-health properties, will remain popular.

During the first UK lockdown (March 2020), there was high demand for cupboard staples, ie, items with a long shelf-life, that still held great nutritional value and taste. With our launch coinciding with the lockdown, we were presented with a great opportunity as consumers sought long-lasting loaf in their weekly shops. Because sourdough freezes well, people could buy several at a time – reducing the need for regular shop visits.

Each of Jason’s Sourdough Ciabattin loaves are packed with rich flavour and use recipes rooted in the brand’s family heritage with our White, Grains & Seeds and Craft Beer variants. Our white sourdough creates a classic staple, nicknamed ‘crumpet bread’ which is good for toasting, while the Grains & Seeds is our healthiest option, as we’ve soaked the seeds to provide more nutrients, which digest better.

Our Craft Beer variant is a true testament to the innovation of Jason’s Sourdough; we wanted this final creation to stand out from the crowd. We’ve replaced some of the water in the dough with one of our favourite local craft beers to embody a unique and authentic flavour, and the result is a delicious, rich hoppy taste. This loaf incorporates the exciting new possibilities of flavour and craft in traditional sourdough processes.

sourdough starters take 24 hours to ferment

A traditional sourdough starter takes a lot longer to ferment than a normal loaf of bread

A packaging makeover

Jason’s Sourdough has undergone somewhat of a makeover in recently, as the brand looks to reflect the generations of expertise that have helped inspire some of its recipes.

The packaging refresh reinforces our heritage and sourdough credentials, while the transparent film enables consumers to see what they’re buying. We opted for modernised, punchier packaging branding to highlight our speciality in sourdough, with crafted recipes giving excellent taste and nutritional value, and we continuously look to increase our sustainability through our packaging and development.

We also wanted to highlight our personality as a brand, connecting with our customers and crafting the brand tone and identity, whilst using practical packaging which is now resealable, to ensure the bread stays fresh for even longer.

We made the decision to include my picture on the packaging, to make customers feel more connected to the brand and the people behind it.

To encapsulate the unique heritage of Jason’s, we also include the recipe number on our packaging, which traces back to the family recipe book (used since the 1960s). This small piece of history was passed onto me not long ago and I’m happy to be able to share a little piece of our story with our customers.

Keeping it simple

Consumers are increasingly becoming aware of the benefits of gut-healthy foods, and the direct correlation between the gut and our serotonin levels.

At Jason’s, we understand the importance of natural and honest ingredients. Our gentle baking processes, low yeast and low glycaemic index offer gut-health benefits, including reduced bloating and maintaining stable blood sugar levels.

At a time where we’re all focusing on our health and wellbeing (perhaps more than ever before), we hope we can do our bit to help reassure people that our bread is not only delicious but a healthier choice.

We also want it to be easy for people to see what’s in their bread, so they can make informed choices – and that’s why we list our ingredients on pack.

About the author

Jason Geary is a fourth generation baker. Continuing the master craftsmanship of his grandfather, Jason combines innovation and modernity to craft every loaf and launched Jason’s Sourdough in 2020.

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