Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Breadmaking with a crowd

How to teach 10-12 people to make bread in two hours? Here's my plan.

Clear the counters, I mean really clear the counters. Wash the top of the kitchen/dining table, too. Double-check the recipes and the ingredient quantities. Write out the triple-batch ingredient quantities so you don't have to think too hard in the moment. Make sure the flour is at room temperature. Have plenty of kitchen towels for floury hands that need to go help a kid or get something to drink. Set up two borrowed stand mixers as well as your own. Get a good night's sleep and eat a good breakfast.

First thing that morning, make up cinnamon roll dough and set it to rise. Put out ingredients at each stand mixer. When most everyone has arrived, give a quick intro to the idea of making yeast bread, then get started on the three batches of Cuban bread dough. When everyone has taken a look at the wet dough, the flour-adding step, and dough that's ready to knead, and then kneaded the dough, put it to rise in bowls and take a quick break to see to kids and drink more coffee, water, whatever.

Divide the dough into half-loaf portions and put everyone to work on shaping their own little loaf (at the counter and table, taking turns if necessary). Put them all in the oven to bake. Take another break.

Roll out the cinnamon roll dough, giving everyone a chance to roll out or simply handle the dough. Top with cinnamon mixture, then roll it up and offer turns at cutting the rolls. Put the pans of cinnamon rolls aside to rise.

When the Cuban bread is done, bake the cinnamon rolls. Give the Cuban bread a few minutes to cool, and then slice a loaf and hand out tastes.

Start a batch of pizza dough; note the different way to start the yeast, and the different texture of the dough. Put it aside to rise in a bowl.

Eat the cinnamon rolls, too!

If there's time, roll out the pizza dough and show how springy it is unless you let it rest. No time to bake and eat it, though. Make calzone or prebaked pizza crust after everyone leaves.

Send everyone home with a small loaf of Cuban bread, and recipes for Cuban bread, cinnamon rolls, and pizza dough.

Well, that's the plan, anyway. I only have two hours, and there will be lots of participants and lots of little kids. My house may end up quite flour-y, but it ought to smell really good!


Donna said...

So, how did it go?

Barbara said...

Today's Thursday, so I'm still on the "pack away Christmas / clear the decks / get good food and rest" stage -- and it's going slowly, but I have all day. Tomorrow will be hectic; today is "slow and steady, get me ready" LOL!

dazeymae said...

just found your blog by looking for pref's close to mine.
looks great.
Like the template, how'd you get it to be pink.
Breadmaking sounded yummy, I could almost smell it.

The Lovely Wife said...

I have a hard enough time making bread with just RevRef and our daughter. I can't imagine what you have undertaken, I think Im gonna buy stock in swifter.
You Go Girl!!!!

Barbara said...

I have no idea how I can do this and not be intimidated by the process. It probably has something to do with a kitchen and dining room that are kid-friendly, a peninsula counter that makes lots of room for kitchen work, and a floor that is colored, finished concrete foundation. Extremely easy to clean!

I made the pink everything in my blog myself, based on the teal version that Blogger has. One of the bonuses of doing Web design is that I can make these kinds of things :)