Field & Fire: A Bakery With A Vision
Posted on August 5, 2016 by Downtown Market
Field & Fire, like so many great ideas, arose out of a conversation between husband and wife. After years in the industry, with tons of experience with bread, and a deep passion for fermentation, Shelby felt that his specific vision for a bakery would be different from anyone he had ever worked for. He felt that he was finally coming to a point where he was ready to share his particular style of baking. And so, after discussing his career and their shared interest in the bread industry, Shelby and his wife decided that they were ready to take on a new project that would highlight Shelby’s specific way of fermenting grains. A year or so later, Field & Fire was born.
Field & Fire’s success is due in large part to Shelby’s view on fermentation, a process which most customers know so little about. “It really involves careful manipulation of your raw ingredients,” Shelby explains, “I try to take a grain and process it in a way that, as a baker, will help my customers to get more out of it. More flavor, more aroma, but, specifically, more healthful attributes.”
Shelby’s fermentation process is long and slow, with sourdough fermenting for up to three days at a time. According to Shelby, this keeps the acid level from rising too high and maintains a mild, balanced flavor of the grain. This, along with his practice of using as many fresh, organic ingredients as possible, raises Field & Fire bread to another level of mindful cooking.
“My particular bent in baking is coming at the process from the perspective of health,” Shelby says, “I really value people’s health and the health of the environment that we occupy. So it felt important to me to try to work within this industry in a way that I could feel great about what I was putting out onto my shelves and into their bodies.” This compassionate outlook on healthy consumption is what keeps Shelby focused on creating the best product possible for his customers.
During his time in the baking industry, Shelby has seen many businesses whose only goal is to make money, with little thought or care for how their food would impact the community around them. “My concern doesn’t stop there,” Shelby states, “I am concerned about the health of the customers who visit here. We sell to a lot of restaurants, so I am concerned about the patrons who go there and eat. I want to be a part of a healthy lifestyle for them. That kind of drives me to come here and do my best for the customers.”
Here at the market, we are so thankful to have vendors like Shelby and Field & Fire who are so dedicated to helping those around them. Because of his desire and drive to nourish his customers with fresh, wholesome ingredients and well-prepared food, Shelby is contributing meaningfully to the world at large. We want to thank Shelby and his Field & Fire team for their exceptional work and incredible food.
For another peek into the Field & Fire experience, check out the video below!