Monday, 12 February 2007

le cordon bleu - day 7

We eat it all the time; breakfast, lunch, dinner and great as a snack throughout the day. It's a rather malleable baked product in that can be converted to various other delicacies. From sticking it in the freezer to serve as toast for up to a month, you can also make French toast with it when it's gone stale, there's also baked bread pudding, bruschetta or even if you just have it as a dipper with hot soups and as an entree to dinner. Of course, it's best eaten when it first comes out of the oven; that's when it's nice and crunchy on the outside and just warm and soft on the inside. Those on the no-carb diet may object but for nutritionists worldwide, it's recognised as a good source of fibre and an essential component of a healthy diet. However, too much of it can be a problem.

Today, I came home with 10 X 520g loaves of white bread. We're making more tomorrow and the day after; so that easily adds up to 10kg of bread which I'll be potentially bringing home this week. My mum had the exact reaction which I thought she would have seeing the bread; I can't blame her. If you saw us in class today, there was literally bread littered across the kitchen; in the oven, on stove tops, on wire racks lying on the benches. Even as we started popping some of it in our mouthes, we all had an armful to take home. (Let's not forget also the breads which the chef got us to make which had various ingredients missing - just to show us what happens). It should make for an interesting week.

Making bread isn't actually that hard; it's probably something that just takes time. I realise now why mum is always reluctant to make bread at home and I would agree, it's not something you can whip up in a jiffy. I guess also, getting all the ingredients you need is difficult too. For the white bread dough today, w
e used things like bread fat, bread improver and fresh yeast; these probably aren't common items stocked on your supermarket shelf. Although next time I'm there, I'll see what they have. It's fun making bread; I'll always remember the banging and the sight of the steam coming out of the oven, the smell of baked bread wafting across the kitchen; as much bread as there is to put me off it, I'm still a bread girl.

The really awesome thing was that the baker in our class taught us how to make Turkish bread; it's a very similar recipe to the one for white bread dough and definitely more kitchen friendly for home cause you remove the bread fat, bread improver and sugar and in place, add some vegetable oil. When it came out of the oven, we dipped it in oil and man, it was good! It might be awhile before I try the recipe though cause this week is already quite bread-filled.

Hmm..and it might also be time for some of those push-ups which I've never been able to do. You do actually need quite a bit of hand-strength working as a baker. From working in the dough and punching it, to lifting the trays out of the oven, it's no mean feat. I'm surprised I didn't fall asleep during theory class. Out for now; my adventure continues tomorrow!

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