Advanced warning: For those seeking pictures, turn back now. I was too busy to pull out my phone and take pictures over the course of production. Sorry. Maybe in December though!
As some of you may know, I moved on to a new bakery a little bit more than a half a year ago. My new employment brought along great opportunities, such as being in charge of bread production, recipe development and better hours. I have been enjoying it, though it has given me plenty of ups and downs, but thankfully I made it through my first holiday at the new bakery.
I arrived Tuesday morning a bit before 2:00 a.m., so not much earlier than normal. I had been working through the weekend on and off formulating what I felt I would need to bake for Tuesday and Wednesday, and had it checked over with the owner. This saved some time Tuesday morning allowing me to start the mixing as soon as I arrived. I had on the agenda 250-300 rolls (butter, sour-seeded, multigrain, rye, pumpernickel), around 70 loaves of bread (eight varities), stuffing mix (essential old bread, re-baked, seasoned, ect.), crostini, numerous brioche-cinnamon rolls, and I am sure something else as well. Doesn't seem like too much, but I am the only one who does any of the bread baking, shaping, mixing, ect. And I also needed to be at college by 9:30 a.m. Ha! Challenge accepted. I just turned on my favorite cd and began.
Needless to say, I took up every deck of our Blodgett Oven, used a lot of flour, butter and other goodies and made a nice assortment of products for our small bakery. When my time came to leave, I had everything out of the oven and all products cooling.
Wednesday morning I arrived a bit earlier than Tuesday. I had another 200 rolls to make, about the same quantity of bread, and even more crostini. Also some help making various pies, scones and other assorted pastries a bit later in the day. Thankfully because of my early arrival, I was able to make the most of my time and used it effectively. I was able to leave around 10:00 a.m. with everything all cleaned up and the products cooling on the racks. I felt accomplished and hoped for a good day!
I stopped by my old bakery to chat with my friends since it is right across the street from my current apartment. They were up a great percentage from last year (not that they were down the past years) and made around 1000 rolls on Monday and Tuesday, plus they worked Sunday. Wednesday was another day for a tremendous amount of rolls as well. It was nice to see everyone and they let me run the oven for a bit, finishing off some rolls and loaves of bread.
I thought about how different my two jobs are from each other when I walked home. One was a large production kitchen were I was a baker among three others, not including the two table helpers for shaping and panning. At the new place I am all alone with my music and my craft. Do I regret the switch? No, I do not think regret is the right word. I enjoy my freedom and responsibilities now, and the thought of growth. But I do miss sharing all those laughs with my co-workers. Such is life though! So it goes.
Now here I am, I didn't sleep-in since I was planning on making some goods for my fiance and I while we relax before she has to work tonight for Black Friday (4th year at Best Buy and watching those crazed shoppers) and before I go back in and start all over again.
Hope you baking goes well today :)