The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

a great day baking at work

yozzause's picture

a great day baking at work

Inspired by the arrival of the Queen Mary 2 in the port of Fremantle here in Western Australia I last night finished the story of my extended trip to the United Kingdom and the meeting of fellow TFL members Andy and Khalid.

a view of QM2 through the rigging of the state sail training ship LEEUWIN11

which im going for a sail on at the end of the month


Hot on the heels of that i have just had a great day baking at work,  Iwas invited to take the Patissiere class  on an ambitious  6 hours of Baking. I arrived early to make sure everything was ready for the 8.00am start, the classroom has had a new prover added  so all 3 classrooms now have their own provers and spiral mixers. To accomodate the plumbing in of the new prover the spiral mixer was in a different position across the other side of the room, i plugged it in only to find that the mixer was spining in the wrong direction as well as the spiral which would make the dough climb the spiral rather than being compressed into the bowl. i have experienced this before and it requires the electrician to change the wires over, no problem there was another 3 phase plug on the wall and bingo  all going the correct way.

I weighed up the ingredients   for the first fruit bun dough as i wanted to start on time, the students were all there and we were away right on time i explained that we had a firly ambitious programme and that we were going to make 2 x fruit doughs the first as a conventional (5KG flour) bulk fermented dough although with a relatively short period of an hour, this would be followed immediately after by an instant  fruit dough (5KG flour) similar to the ones that hot bread shops would be turning out their hot cross buns  except ours had butter and eggs in the mix and exactly what we were in fact using this dough for, the first dough was destined to be cinnamon scrolls.

The 3rd dough was to be a Sourdough  using 4.5KG flour 3KG of water and 1.5 of my Sourdough culture This would be mixed according to how well we progressed with the first two doughs.

The first dough had a hydration of 60% and we used butter  the fruit was added at 47%, the dough seemed a bit wet but as i explained the dried fruit was very dry so i anticipated the fruit  would suck up some of that moisture during the bulk fermentation.

The classroom was 18 degrees C and the flour was 21 dgrees C  we added the water at 36 degreesC and ended up with a finished dough temp of 27 degrees , close to perfect. we put that dough into a proving vessel and out of the draft in the store room. The 2nd dough was started immediatly as the students had weighed up ready This dough was almost identical except for the addition of mixed spices and Bread Improver (Dobrim) (Aus.)  At the rate of 0.5%  the dough becomes an instant dough so can be processed shortly after mixing as the gluten conditioners get to work this dough also had butter and eggs in the mix.  The water was added 2 degrees hotter than dough1 to see if we could hit the magic 28 degrees  as it was we finished @29.

All the students were able to do there window pane tests on the dough  to ensure proper dough development the dough was placed on the bench and allowed to rest for a few minutes whilst we got organised, we have a hand bun divider that cuts out 14 buns so the dough pieces were weighed off at 1120g, i demonstrated handing up how i do it but showed them how they could achieve a very satisfactory result by pulling the dough pieces toward them on the bench, it was good to see every one participating.

The sour dough ingredients was then weighed up ready to be mixed whilst we allowed the dough pieces to relax for a short while, then everyone got the chance to flatten their dough rounds into the dividing pan and cut out theit 14 dough pieces  for 80g buns. Short work was made of the handing up of the buns with most students showing good skills and those that needed a little more guidance being shown the way. The buns were place onto baking trays that this year i decided to use baking paper on as the trays are not good bakers sheets with lips all around  and constantly cleaned so liable to want to stick. That was a good move as we were able to slide the buns off relatively easy when the had come from the oven. All buns were in the proover and a quick check of dough 1 had shown remarkable growth we still had time to mix the Sourdough, this bread is one i have made a few times and has the addition of  Sesame oil in the dough and also Black Sesame seeds added at the end of the mix both  give it a wonderful aroma. Again we finished this dough at 29 degrees and split it to fit into 2 tubs.

The bulk fermented dough was the brought out and from the mark on the outside of the container we believe it had more than tripled. all the students were able to do the finger poke test and able to see the dough hold the shape of the extracted finger  indicating the dough was at its prime, the knock down was demonstrated and explained along with the chance to experience the smell of the gas produced and held captive by the dough. The dough was benched and again divided normally i would weigh for a dozen buns but thought that they might find 8 easier to handle so weight was 640g and as these dough pieces were destined to be rolled out as rectangles the handing up was a matter of folding up as rectangles these were duly  covered and allowed to relax for 10 minutes, time to check on the hot cross buns in the prover  and they were moving along nicely the class then fire up their ovens, and the cross mixture and sugar wash were prepared

The attention was then back on the cinnamon buns as i demonstrated the rolling out of the dough pieces the brushing with water and sprinkling of the cinnamon sugar and the the rolling of the dough and the simple mater of cutting 1 into 2, 2 into 4 and 4 into 8 allowing for the ends to be slightly bigger as the ends are not always square showing them how to make sure the seam is pinched and that the end pieces are placed into the centre of the trays and that the pinched ends ar also facing inwards to achieve the best look. again the students did well and were able to recognise any faults like loose rolling up etc and then do better. The hot cross buns were brought brought from the prover and had the crosses piped on and were then ready for the oven , the cinnamon scrolls were then placed into the prover. The Sourdough was then able to be demonstrated with its stretch and folds being done on the hour. The H/C buns were then  brought out and duly sugar syrup washed and looking a treat. The students were then allowed a quick pit stop and were asked to weigh up their last dough which was to be a hand made dough on the bench.

This dough was just a 200g of flour job and to be hand made on the bench the main ides was for them to feel the dough changing in their hands as the energy was put into the dough, suffice to say they all ended up with agreater respect for their trusty mixers agin this was don as an instant dough as time constraints with other classes due to use the kitchen in the afternoon. they were all able to shape their dough pieces as the pleased after i showed them 3 plaits, 4 plaits cottage loaves etc most wanted to tackle the plaits  and they all looked pretty good. the cinnamon buns were now ready for baking and   they too also looked first class both going into and coming out of the ovens these were also sugar syrup washed  after the oven and given a sprinkle of fine sugar as well. The stretch and folds were performed when due on the sourdough and the first taste tests were conducted on the Hot cross buns.

Cleaning up was commenced  and the hand made doughs were also baked off when the had proved up nicely  finally the Sour dough was divided up loosley handed up allowed some recovery and the boards and linen clothes made ready. Everyone was involved in the shaping of the S/D loaves which we weighed up at 500g they were shown how to place them on the couche and to cover them up for their overnight stay in the coolroom. I am going back tomorrow for 1.00pm so that they can bake their sourdough loaves and take them home. All in all a great day away from my normal duties as the purchasing officer with some very nice buns turned out and the prospect of some delightful bread to come.

There may well be some pictures to add that the students were taking time will tell and i will add them i will also post the dough formulas after i get back to work tomorrow 

Some of the sourdough black sesamee bread baked the day following the students making the dough

Kind regards Yozza



TigerLily's picture

Hi Yozza,

just wanted to let you know that I love all the breads we made thisweek in class. My kids especially loved the cinnamon scrolls and the hot cross buns.

The Sourdough Bread turned out beautifully too. The texture of the crumb was just right. I told you that I wasn't a huge fan of the sourdough flavour, but this one wasn't as strong as others I've had in the past, which suited me just fine.

Next time though, I might leave out the black sesame seeds and try and make it more Portuguese looking. LOL

Thank you for sharing your sourdough culture with me.  My baby has been fed and is growing beautifully. Will try making Portuguese Sweet Potato Bread soon because I don't want to throw away my culture, because this morning it was already 1.4kg...which is huge.

Will let you know how I go.

Thanks, TigerLily 

yozzause's picture

Hi There Tiger Lilly and welcome to TFL

great to have another West Aussie on board perhaps if we can get afew more we can have a regular  West Aussie get together now that makes 3 of us. Don't forget to fill in your details its always good to be able to read about the correspondants. Iam pleased you enjoyed the day as did i,and always a pleasure when people are keen. Thankyou for your kind words

regards Derek