The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

HI!, My Name is Jake...New Member Introduction

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shakin_jake's picture
shakin_jake

HI!, My Name is Jake...New Member Introduction

Greetings All!  So good to be here.  I'll keep this introduction short.  My name is Jake, friends call me Shakin Jake.  Let's see...baking history...I'm 55 years young now but back in my late teens into my early twenties I worked in a commercial bread bakery where I discovered my love for bread.  We baked bread buns and rolls.  This was 1975 to 1980 (Oak Park MI.).  I did every job in that bakery, from making sponge mixes to running a bread wrapper.  Since that time I've been a home baker baking loaves of bread for myself, wife and anyone else that wanders into our kitchen.  The main reason I came across this forum, I was doing research to get information on making a possible stand mixer purchase.  I see that this site is a whole lot more than a place to peruse opinions comparing flour mixers and I hope to learn from the group on how to expand & develop my interest in making new to me breads, and I'm sure a few other types of baked goods.  I'd often wondered why I didn't get involved in learning  to be or become a pastry chef.  I did a short stint back in the day making donuts part time to make extra money at a cider mill (Franklin MI.).  I've also made a living in the kitchen of a few restaurants in the greater Detroit/Ann Arbor area, also in the lower Fla. Keys and I sold produce for a Produce Pro (Fla. Keys/Key West).  It's the food industry type of work I've always loved.  Anyways, I'm humbled to be here and I look forward to learning from this group.  Currently my bread making past time sees me making a few French loaves at a time, and who doesn't love to make and eat pizza?=:-)  Again, I'm happy to be here and thank you for allowing me to particapate.  If I may, I'd like to say a word or two about kneading bread doughs.  I've always done my bread mixing and kneading at home by hand.  I almost feel like a traitor considering to use a mechanical device (stand mixer) to do this type of work in the home as I've always considered dough kneading a zen like experience, but I'm getting older and having trouble with an old shoulder injury so after kneading a standard two loaf bread recipe, I keep thinking I should turn this work over to a machine.  That's all of for now...thanks again for having me and at the risk of repeating myself, I truly look forward to learning from this group

 

 

Best,

 

 

Jake

Reddick Fla.    

mimifix's picture
mimifix

Welcome, Jake! If using a mixer helps you enjoy breadmaking, then find one and further your passion. Breadmachines that knead the dough are also helpful for people who have problems using their hands. Don't let your preconceived notions or other opinionated "purists" stop you from baking bread. After years of owning an all-scratch bakery, I'm now baking at home and still enjoying my kitchen. I often use a breadmachine to help - my hands are always thankful!

wayne on FLUKE's picture
wayne on FLUKE

worth checking out.

I found mine on ebay, check out http://www.pleasanthillgrain.com/bosch_compact_mixers.aspx

Lots of attachments available as well.

wayne

Breadboard's picture
Breadboard

Like you I found this site lookin for information and recently joined so I can share and learn.   That's terrific that you've worked in the food industry and have the desire to continue with your bread makin journey.   Take pictures, they speak a thousand words.   

Well I got a KitchenAid and if I need some help that machine is a regular work horse.  Bought it in the late 80's with attachments and it's running fine to this day.  Won't cost you a bag of money, I think there are special sales on the mixers.  Yeah, it's not a pro mixer but for home baking it does the job. 

Don't feel like a traitor.  What's important here is having fun and being able to bake beautiful and delicious bread.

Good luck! 

Breadboard

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Good to make your acquaintance Jake. I grew up down the road in Jackson, MI but now am in WI. It sounds like you have plenty of experience and interest to help you move forward in home baking.

One thing that has become popular and common here in this forum is using stretch and fold instead of kneading the dough. I have come to use S&F exclusively now after a short initial mixing. It is much less of a strain on the hands which is appreciated as time goes on.

Welcome to the site and I look forward to seeing your breads.

Eric

gmagmabaking2's picture
gmagmabaking2

I like using my Cuisinart or my Kitchen Aid to do the bulk of the kneading, but "need" to get that hands on experience to test the texture etc... so let the old shoulder have a break and enjoy the benefits of both technology and good old fashioned "hands-on". Welcome Aboard. My two sisters and I, gmagmabaking2, TX, gmabaking, WA, and gmabaking2, TX too.... we are enjoying the "Inside the Jewish Cookbook" Challenge.

Stuart Borken's picture
Stuart Borken

This is a awsome site.  You will see topics on equipment for bread making and baking.  Sources of sours.  Tecniques of kneading and slashing.  This site has everything.

stu b

shakin_jake's picture
shakin_jake

Hi!, and yes!, thanks for the warm welcomes from everyone that replied here, and to those that are silently wishing me well.  I salute you too!  First off, let me say, I'm kind of liking how this time of the year (we have company coming soon) is making it crazy for me and Mrs. Jake.  We're so in the weeds=:-), and one of the reasons I reply so late at night as things are so jammed packed here, mainly trying to get this place cleaned up for Mom-In-Law and her Sister-In-Law (wifey's Aunt).  They're the only family we have so we look forward to their arrival, and we haven't seen them in a few years due to health issues Mrs. Jake's Mother had (she's 90 years young!)

So, I have a lot of reading to do here but I did find the time to expeiment with the Pizza Primer and made some wonderful pie earlier Wednesday evening for Helen and I, and Helen loved the pie crust.  FWIW I mixed the dough very early Wednesday morning.  I let the dough rise in the fridge over nightm (all day I guess).  Makes all the difference in the world, the rise, and apologies in advance for not taking pics of the pizza.  I was so busy making it then eating, there was nothing left to shoot=:-)...and I'll have to give the stretch and fold way of kneading a shot, after I read up on it some

Before I forget, the pizza toppings I used were: Ragu sauce...yes, have you ever tried using bottled pasta sauce for pizza sauce?  It's wonderful, and convienent.  I first poured olive oil on the top of the dough after I had it shaped (I laid it out on an oiled baking tray), then I grated by hand some romano cheese, then the Ragu went on, sparingly.  I thinly sliced a sweete onion placed in a bowl and grabbed a stick of salami, sliced then diced and pl;aced in the same bowl as the onions.  I also thinly sliced 5 or 6 small cloves of garlic, which went on top of the Ragu, then the onions, Salami and for cheese, I had a little bit of cheddar.  I set the oven for 450, baked for about 10 minutes on the tray in the lower part of the oven.  Let me tell you, this pie was magnificent, and Mrs. Jake loved it...and that's all that matters, in my house=:-)  I'll try to take pics next time!

Also, I'm in love with the idea of trying my hand at making a sour dough starter but I will have to wait until we find the time to get to a store to buy the pineapple juice.  We have everything else here to make it.  Okay, that's it for me tonight.  Thanks again for all of the well wishes.  The warm welcome you have provided to me is heart felt

 

 

Best,

 

 

Jake

Reddick Fla.

shakin_jake's picture
shakin_jake

Hi Again!,  Well, it's been a mighty strange trip exploring different avenues in bread baking via the internet.  The research has been a real eye opener.  Oh!, before I forget, I have a sour dough culture started...it's a few days old so I'm going into day 3.  I took a whiff of it a few hours ago and it smells like it's turning, a good sign I'm sure, but, we can always hope for the best=:-)  Anywho, getting back to the research...it's looking like trying some new styles of baking is really another way to develop some new acquisition disorders.  For instance...I've been reading about how some here are using grain mills to grind their own flours, then I remember, we just bought 35 lbs. of red winter wheart berries a 4 months ago, so I have potential fresh flour stock that I'm sitting on, and here comes the acquisition disorder part because now I need a grain mill to turn the hard winter wheat berries into flour.  Why did we buy 35 lbs. of red winter wheat bearries?...one of our reptiles has a type of cancer so we thought we'd turn to using fresh wheat grass to try and turn her around, injecting the juice into her food (it's worked out well).  We've had a wheat grass juicer from back when we lived in Big Pine Key (yes, we were big pioneers=:-) and went through the wheat grass juice expeience.  The juicer I have is a hand crank type (worm drive?) and works very well at turning grass into jusice.  Sorry, but I digress

On the stand mixer front and where I'm at purchasing one.  I'm, more confused now than ever before, exploring all of the various options.  I thought I remembered someone on my thread suggesting I take a look at the DLX.  Looking at the past messages here, I realize I must have seen this suggestion somewhere else but, as far as the DLX mixer goes, it looks like nice kit, but I'll admit I've been spending time looking at commercial 8 and 12 quart stand mixers and have determined I'm going to have to give all of this some long hard thought.  That said, as some here commenting (this thread) suggesting for me to take a look at the Kitchen Aid line...I've spent quite a bit of time perusing reviews of that company's mixer and have read more positive vs. negative reviews, yet the negative reviews have given me pause.  Just yesterday I found out KA builds either a 7 quart or an 8 quart commercial (pro) model with 1.5 HP motor (IIRC)...it's $900 on their webstie or $100 less from Amazon.  If you haven't guessed yet I tend to over think a lot of things and lean towards purchasing goods that will stand up to heavy use but I haven't moved forward with anything yet and this stand mixer purchase will be done after a lot of thought and procrastination has gone into it=:-)  In the meantime I'm hand kneading my mixes.  Life is beautiful

 

Best,

 

Jake

Reddick Fla.