The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Proof of life

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PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

Proof of life

It's been two months since I last posted and I've scarcely gotten past the lurking stage here at TFL in that time.  The new project has kept me very busy at work, with more overtime than I care for.  The good news is that if the project progresses past the current stage, I'll get to work even more overtime for the next three years!  Yippee!  It's kind of like the airlines; if you fly with them often enough, they reward you by - wait for it - letting you fly even more!  I really can't complain too much, though, having learned that being underworked is a lot less satisfying than being overloaded.

Nevertheless, I have managed to fit a bit of life in and around the work schedule.  In one 7-day period in mid-February, I taught a sandwich breads class (Portugese Sweet Bread and Ciabattini) and a sourdough class (a light wheat sourdough and wheat/rye sourdough crackers) at the Culinary Center of Kansas City.  In between those two classes, there was a King Cake class for the Slow Food Kansas City organization.  It was cool to get acquainted with Chef Jasper Mirabile and have 20 or so people up to their elbows in flour.  This weekend, I taught an artisanal breads class (a French country boule and a variation on Pain a l'Ancienne) at CCKC.  

You never know what will resonate with the students.  This last time around, while discussing measuring ingredients by weight instead of by volume, one exclaimed "Why hasn't anyone ever told us about this before?  Learning that alone is worth the price of the class."  For others, learning techniques for handling high-hydration doughs was a big benefit.

Besides baking all of the breads for the classes (anywhere from 2-4 times each), other baking has included Mini's Favorite 100% Rye (absolutely delicious), as well as some lavender lemon scones that I've been testing for an upcoming class (my neighbors are really happy).  

So, even though I may not show up around here as often as I have previously, I'm still having fun with bread.

Paul

Comments

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

You are really a pro and your classes and outlook show it. No wonder you have full classes and great feed-back. When you retire you will have a great 2nd career if you choose to go that route. Look forward to more pics of your classes...they are great fun to see. c

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

Just a raggedy home baker, to steal proth5's phrase.  But, I do have a lot of fun with the classes.  For all practical purposes, it's a hobby that pays instead of one that soaks up a lot of cash.  Interesting notion to pursue it as a second career, though.

Paul

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

I think sharing it in the way you are doing now and then when the time comes perhaps pursuing it with more intent makes sense. It isn't everyone that has a gift, as you do, and also the ability and desire to pass it along. You will know when the time is right ;)  Good luck !  c

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

What are you baking for St Paddy's Day tomorrow?  Your schedule all sounds so much like work... Lucy tries to avoid that at all costs:-)  Thanks for the update Paul and

Happy Baking

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

The rest of it is fun!  

No plans for a St. Paddy's Day bake.  My wife made some soda bread yesterday (yum!) and the chocolate stout cake that qahtan posted a few years back (sinfully decadent!), so those will have to do. Being in Kansas, we used the Oatmeal Stout from Free State Brewing instead of Guinness in the cake and it didn't hurt a thing.

Paul

wassisname's picture
wassisname

Great to hear that you are still spreading the word, Paul.  Keep up the good work - the more bakers the better!

Marcus

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

Second the notion that the more bakers, the better.

Paul