Vendor brings bread from home to table

Sorensen grew love for baking while visiting research center; products regularly sell out



Eric Sorensen offers a variety of artisan breads that are baked at his home and sold at the Pullman Farmers Market.

CHLOE GRUNDMEIER, Evergreen reporter

Eric Sorensen is a science writer who wants to provide the Palouse with artisan bread through his business Clumsy Crow Baking.

Sorensen has baked bread since his college days, but his love exploded when he visited The Bread Lab at the WSU-Mount Vernon Research Center while reporting on the products created there.

“I was quickly fascinated,” Sorensen wrote. “It looked like fun and I was recommended some [of baker and author Chad Robertsons’] recipes and it snowballed. It’s a real challenge to make a really good loaf of bread.”

In a piece he wrote about his bakery, Sorensen described his journey of breadmaking as “making several loaves a week, chasing the elusive ideal of dark, hole-infused loaves that author Chad Robertson had let loose on the world.”

Now, several years after his original interest piqued, Sorensen brings breads cooked in his kitchen at home to the Pullman Farmers Market. He regularly sells out of his sourdough loaves within the first hour, and “loves the look of revelation on someone discovering a warm, soft mahogany pretzel,” he wrote.

Sorensen said he enjoys the transformation aspect that comes along with baking breads.

“It’s a very physical process and it’s kind of like alchemy,” Sorensen said. “You mix flour, water, salt and yeast and after a few hours it’s this brown, good smelling thing crackling on your kitchen counter.”

Along with attending the Farmers Market, Sorensen provides dozens of people around the Palouse with bread through his subscription service.

“I’m not going to feed the world here, but each week there are several dozen people who can get a really good piece of bread,” Sorensen said.

He described a perfect piece of bread as flavorful with a crisp crust that keeps really well and is good plain, formed into croutons or used as French toast.

“It does a lot more than the stuff wrapped in plastic,” Sorensen said.

Clumsy Crow Baking usually attends the Pullman Farmers Market from 3:30-6:30 p.m. every Wednesday in the Spot Shop parking lot, but will be absent for the next two weeks, with plans to return July 18.

“I’m a science writer,” Sorensen said. “The word ‘magic’ isn’t something I throw around very easily but the difference between what you start with and what you end up with looks like magic. I love going through that process.”