Late last year, a new cookbook graced the shelves. Knead Peace is the work of English baker Andrew Green in collaboration with Anna Makievska, who owns and runs the Bakehouse in Kyiv, which has remained open throughout the conflict raging through the country.
When the news broke about the war in Ukraine, Andrew, who was miles away from the conflict, felt the urge to help.
“When I heard about the determination and commitment of Anna and the Bakehouse in Kyiv, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to put my biggest passion, baking, to good use,” Andrew says.
“I heard about Anna and The Bakehouse originally on the radio and reached out to her on social media with the proposal of creating a recipe book to raise money for the DEC in Ukraine.”
And so, the two began their crusade to create a recipe book for good. They reached out to successful bakers around the world, soliciting recipe contributions for Knead Peace and received an amazing response.
“I was blown away by how encouraging the response was, I started out with an Instagram post and left comments on the accounts of those bakers who had most inspired me throughout my career as well as firing off emails to everyone I could,” Andrew says.
A lot of the people who have donated recipes to the book are international high flyers, including Darren Purchese, Yotam Ottolenghi, and Helen Goh.
Andrew says, “People were overwhelmingly supportive, and I think it was something that really tapped into the need I mentioned previously; the need to just do something to help. It was such an honour to have these incredible bakers trust me with their recipes, and I knew I had to see it through.”
The book focuses on bread, which connects people in ways that no one baked good does.
“Bread, to me, represents the human experience, it’s the heart of a meal and the staple of family life,” says Andrew.
“It also connects us to all those hands around the world kneading dough and all of the situations held there; it crosses languages and beliefs, it’s simple and unifying.”
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of every book is being donated to humanitarian causes in Ukraine, but Andrew says this is not it for Knead Peace.
“We’re currently exploring how Knead Peace can benefit more people, how we can harness this lovely community we’ve created to do as much good as we can, we’re hoping to open a Knead Peace Bakery in the future that can teach these skills to those who ‘knead’ it most and there’s always the possibility of more books in the future.
“We’ve also had attention from many big names in the baking world who are keen to be involved in further fundraising projects, which is something we’re looking into now.”