The Bread Doctor

artisan bakery in Torrington, Wyoming
November 22, 2013

Challah bonanza

So, the big Challah-baking event happened yesterday at The Bread Doctor and I actually baked 40 loaves of this beautiful bread.

Challah ready for packaging

It took 12 hours to bake all of those loaves, but I was thrilled and on top of the world.  I was so excited, because the ovens were cooperating, the loaves were not burning, and I could see and feel magic happening.  As always, I was learning as the project moved on.

Lessons learned included:

1) The batch of dough that I made actually made 10 loaves each instead of nine…this was good for yield.  And I was able to call a few people on the waiting list and sell them bread.

2) It is awfully hard to have people find 218 Linda Vista when the construction project involved removing the house numbers.  So, I had to have a quick fix that involved particle board and spray paint.  I call it baker’s graffiti.

It looks like I have topsoil for sale

3)I actually can bake for 12 hours, go to bed and recover, and show up for work the next day bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.

4) I must get a bigger oven…lots bigger, in order to bake 9-12 loaves at a time rather than 3.  When I can get the room to create the volume, then I can make more loaves in one day and will not have to restrict the number of orders.

5)After baking and washing my hands all day…all of the skin on my hands split open with tiny micro-cracks.  These felt like 100 bees stinging my hands every time I used hand sanitizer at work today….nice.

I felt like a real baker yesterday and am scheming and planning my next event.  It might include more Challah, biscotti, or some whole grain bread.  I am working on getting the sheeter hooked up to the phase converter so that I can start with croissants up and running.  Each event takes me one step closer to a retail bakery.