Bread!

We finished the breads section of class a couple weeks ago but since it was a super busy couple of weeks for me, I usually resorted to taking a quick snapshot of what was made in class when I could fit it in. Now that I’m finally going through the pics I’m bummed that I missed a lot… no croissants, no danish, sourdoughs, baguettes, or paris brest, and more. :( Darn those took a while to make too. Argh …

But anyways here’s a sample of what we took home on a daily basis. (A couple more at flickr.) Pictured above are some whole wheat loaves, french bread, and brioche. I have to say my favorite was the whole wheat sourdough…nice and hearty with a pleasant nutty flavor from seeds that were added in.

Working with breads is a completely different beast from cakes. Although the final product looks visually simple compared to a cake, it still takes considerable effort to get everything just right. I never thought about base temps, proofing, fermentation and shaping before. I just saw a benign boule of bread. And unlike cakes, it was a nice change to not make everything look so darn pretty. No colors or piping necessary. Instead your hands are shaping dough into rough, rustic shapes.

One last thing on breads…this week there’s a bread master class going on next door taught by this world champion master baker (<–am I infantile that this makes me laugh when I say it out loud?) and he put together the most amazing bread showpiece for the screening of this documentary on the M.O.F. (Good ‘ole wikipedia explanation of an M.O.F. here.) It was the Eiffel Tower, a chef’s hat and a director’s board mounted on a braided platform…all made from bread. Well, not quite all bread. The overall structure of the Eiffel Tower was made of bread and the metal linkages was represented by a network of CHOCOLATE. It was crazy…we all ooohed and ahhhed when we laid our eyes on it. The showpieces never cease to impress me.

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