September 5

Today was the first day back at school after the long weekend.  When I got to class I learned we would be making cheesecake instead of the honey wheat bread I had mentally prepared myself for.  Fortunately we were still baking french bread, so not all of my pep talk had gone to waste (;  I started with the french bread.  Since we were using measuring cups, I left a cup of flour out of my dough and went with my gut feeling that it was hydrated enough.  While I let that ferment I started on the Cheesecake with my assigned partner.  It was a very simple recipe so we finished it quickly and got back to our dough.  However, as the chef came around he noted that our mixture was way to thick.  I was confident we used the right ingredients, so we put the cheesecake in the oven….and it burnt!!  We forgot to get it out, it was so embarrassing!  I tried to put that failure behind me as I worked on my dough.  I put into practice everything I had learned the past couple weeks about bread, including being extra careful about slashing.  I was proud with how it turned out.

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I made 5 roll shapes and one loaf shape.  I like how dark the egg wash made my loaves look!

At the end of the day I was extremely disappointed in my cheesecake.  I went home and remade the recipe, and I realized the reason it was so thick was because the cream cheese at school was so cold and we didn’t bother bringing it to room temperature.  At home, on the other hand, the mixture was a lot thinner when the cream cheese wasn’t cold.  As you can see, however, I still have a lot of practice on it.  The top is separated and the sides are less than aesthetic.  As for my bread, I liked seeing myself improve from the first day.  I’m still not perfect, but I understand better how to ferment, proof, score, and bake.

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