Friday, November 6, 2009

san francisco baking institute: artisan 1 workshop

I am very excited to announce that I will be going to the San Francisco Baking Institute to take an artisan bread baking course called Artisan Breads I: Artisan Baking Fundamentals.

After lots of translations from Spanish to English (my other occupation at the moment is to be a freelance translator) and a present from my mother, I have saved up enough money to go to this workshop.
Here is a description of what I'll be doing:

"As a student in Artisan I, you will become familiar with the terms short mix, improved mix and intensive mix while learning what types of flour you should be using and the proper mixing techniques for every bread imaginable. You will gain an understanding of the relationship between mixing and fermentation, through demonstration and discussion.

Learn how you can completely change the profile of bread by adding an additional ingredient such as butter or sugar. Acquire overall knowledge about the most common preferments used in bakeries today while you see and taste how they effect breads differently. Get started in understanding and using baker's math—an invaluable kitchen tool that will make you a more efficient and responsive baker.

We use the classic baguette to teach the fundamentals, but you will also learn to make Rye Bread, Whole Wheat Bread, Multigrain Bread, Pan Bread and Braided Egg Bread. The skills you learn in this class are directly applicable for a position in a professional bakery or for a serious home baker. When you finish this class, you will be able to write recipes instead of following them!"

I have read some reviews of the workshop and I am very impressed with what they said. My friend Floyd from the Fresh Loaf also said he knew some people who took the course and absolutely loved it as well, so I think it'll be worth it.

The most exciting part about taking this course is that I have so many questions to ask a professional baker, but I haven't been able to ask anyone because, thanks to the economic recession, bakeries are not hiring or willing to give me (free) internships. I applied to work at virtually every bakery in Portland! So, this is my chance to ask everything I've been wondering this whole time.

I'll post again with my conclusions after the course (~January 23rd).

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