"Baking is for life"

My name is Beesham Soogrim. Born and raised on the beautiful Island of Mauritius, I became a vegetarian chef at the age of 20 and have since worked in many different countries including India, Mauritius, South Africa, Norway and Sweden. I now work as a chef at the Waldorf School in southern Sweden. Besides that, I travel the world to give workshops for both professional and amateur bakers.

Baking has always been a big part of my life. In the early 1990s, I started making bread using overnight fermentation while working at a restaurant in Oslo. And then I learnt about sourdough from Manfred Enoksson in Sweden … this led me to develop sourdoughs breads of my own. I couldn’t believe it was possible to create such delicious breads using just flour, water and salt.

The bread recipe I created in Oslo in 1992

  • 3 kg wheat, 1 kg whole rye, 1 kg whole wheat, 800g mixed seeds, 2 l water, 10g yeast, 100g salt, 3 dl malt syrup.

  • Mix all ingredients together and leave in the fridge overnight. Divide the mix (the following morning) and put into bread tins for 2 hours of proofing.

  • Bake at 230°C with steam for about 40 min.

I’m happy to report that the recipe is still used today, and still being served to customers.

<Quest for Sourdough>

I first started posting pictures of my bread on social media in 2012, and soon after was sharing my passion and knowledge about natural fermentation in workshops. Since then, together with a project called ‘Our Beloved Bread’, we’ve had people from all over the world come to learn about sourdough and some of the five hundred varieties of grains grown here in southern Sweden. It was Hans Larsson and Bengt-Göran Carlsson who started the ‘Our Beloved Bread’ project with financial help from the Skåne Region. They’ve managed to convince farmers, millers and bakers to cultivate organic heritage grains and use fresh-milled whole grains to bake healthier, tastier breads.

As a believer in quality not quantity, I want to bake flavourful breads while also knowing the origin and source of the ingredients I put in them … what could be better than that? I am excited to be part of the Quest for Sourdough and look forward to spreading the Quest wherever I go.

You can follow Beesham on Facebook and Instagram