Bread Wednesday – Finally!

We made focaccia and wheat bread this morning.  It was an extremely long lab session today (and every Wednesday) – 4 hours.  It really flew by, though.  I was surprised at how suddenly it was over!  I learned quite a bit today.  I’ve never been in a commercial kitchen (which is how the kitchen-classroom is set up), so there were things that were new for me.

I’m utterly exhausted by this day, though.  Four hours on my feet in the kitchen was fine while I was there, but as soon as I sat down in the library, I almost dozed off.  I had to get a second coffee this afternoon to stay alert and awake.  I will definitely sleep well tonight!

Chef Weber made focaccia dough this morning and started proofing it before we got to class so that we would be able to roll and bake when the time came.  Since he made the dough for the focaccia already, we started with the wheat bread.  Though a little daunting at first, I figured out where to find things pretty quickly.  My partner was a huge help because she took culinary classes in her high school so she knew where to look for things.  I really like Chef Weber so far – he seems to want us to learn.  Since I will be spending 5 hours a week with him for the quarter, it’s good that he’s not obnoxious or mean.

I had class with the chef who runs the Baking program on Monday – her name is Chef Touria.  She is pretty awesome, I think.  She got her degree from Hocking and has worked in many kitchens since then.  She seems to genuinely love what she does and care about her students.  Hers is a three-hour class introducing us to the baking industry.  She is going to have us do a menu for a bake shop, so we’ll get to learn some menu planning along with the regular baking stuff.  Our syllabus also mentions a field trip to a bakery in Athens near the end of the quarter, which is super exciting!

I also had my communications class today, then nutrition at 5:30 this evening.  Fun fun!  We had to read about digestion for homework last week, and I’ve decided that I’m glad I didn’t go into gastroenterology.  Just the terms that are used to describe digestion are gross to me.  There are just certain words that I should never have to read in any context.  It’s like seeing a toilet on the TV — I find it unsavory.

I have to say that this change in direction has been really good for me.  I am a happier person now than I had been in a really long time in Maryland.  Though my job was great, and I totally loved training, this is one of the better decisions I’ve ever made.  I love you all for being so supportive and encouraging!  Big hugs from O-HI-O!


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