Vaimoana Tapaleao is the New Zealand Herald's Pacific Affairs and People reporter.

Flour-power the new big fresh

Head baker Dan Cruden, left, and senior backer Paul Leaming at Stone Mill at Amano Bakery. Photo / Dean Purcell
Head baker Dan Cruden, left, and senior backer Paul Leaming at Stone Mill at Amano Bakery. Photo / Dean Purcell

Making your own organic bread is pretty fancy already.

But a new artisan bakery in Auckland is going one step further - by making its own flour, too.

It's the new eating trend taking off overseas and now it's arrived in New Zealand.

Amano Bakery, at Britomart, is installing its own flour mill in what its owners say is a bid to introduce customers to a truly fresh eating experience.

The establishment is owned by the Hip Group, which runs several hot-spot restaurants and cafes around Auckland City including Milse, Ortolana, Kohi Corner, Rosie, Provenance and St Heliers Bay Bistro.

Co-owner Scott Brown said installing a flour mill aligned with their goal of providing fresh, sustainable and truly good food.

"In the bakery, instead of just buying flour from beautiful wheat growers who mill the flour, we decided to do it ourselves because we wanted that fresher flour.

"We found it really hard, in New Zealand, to get good boutique and consistent flour and so that's why we decided to go and do it ourselves - so that we can have that ultimate experience of fresh, fresh, fresh flour," he said.

"It's all about pushing the boundaries and doing the world's best. We always try to keep on pushing our chefs and our staff to become better at what they do and have more quality over what they're doing."

As well as making flour for fresh breads, croissants and other pastry delights, the mill will also be used for a new pasta bar the bakery is due to set up.

Diners will be able to choose their pasta dish and see the pasta being made in front of them.

A number of bakeries in Australia and the US have started using their own in-house flour mills.

And closer to home, Amano isn't the only eatery taking up the trend.

Parnell restaurant Pasture offers customers home-baked sourdough made from grains it mills on site.

"It's not hugely common, it's very boutique," Brown said.

Amano will host a convention next week where bakers from around New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific will gather to talk and learn about all things bread.

It will also be an opportunity to show off the new flour mill.

Ultimately, taking things back to basics was what Amano's food was about, Brown said.

"We want to give our customers the ultimate taste experience with no fillers, no extenders, no chemicals.

"We only get one body in life.

"There are enough pollutants in the world - we don't need to be putting more pollutants in to our bodies."

- NZ Herald

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