We’ve made some original size desserts and pastries before this chapter, such as mousse cakes, tarts and so on. But now we making more cute stuff, what’s it about tiny things? Like babies, puppies and kittens, they are soooo cute and sweet, we just want to eat them up!!! Small desserts are no exception. I’m so excited to make our own signature tart and small dessert. Even though there were many mistakes in the process, but I learned a lot from it. Maybe our instructors just waiting us make mistake, so we can remember the knowledge deeply.

My signature small dessert is white chocolate and raspberry mousse cake; the tart is peach almond tart.

  • What did I learn from peach tart and small cake?

For the peach tart, the most important part is the frangipane filling, I over mixed the filling, the recipe book says, “combined the rest of ingredients”, I should stop mixing as soon as I can’t see the ingredient that I just added, but when I checked out the batter, they were too sticky, so I left them continue mixing three more minutes. Yes, baking is a science, even if you baking for years, one small thing you were never thought could make all of the difference in your end results. I noticed that I have to review the basic theory again, and care of every detail. For the mouse cake, I used the chocolate to line the cake, I spend lots of time to temper it, but the result still not good enough, cause our lab is humidity and hot, I tried to us the transfer sheet to give the chocolate a fancy looking, the process was suffer, I almost lost my patience, fortunately, it’s working well, thanks for our instructor encouraged me.

  • What did I learn in particular related to the costing? Were there certain costs that affected my choice of ingredients or design?

I used the seasonal and readily available ingredients, so there certain costs that affected my choice of ingredients and design, for the pear tart, the certain costs are pears, canned pears for filling, and the fresh one to make pear crisps for garnish. I noticed that before you decided to make some goods, you have to calculate carefully, to reduce the waste and cost. If you have some left over, you need to figure out how to transfer to another product, for example we can use the mousse to fill the mousse cup; the crumbs can make the rum balls.


  • Why did I choose the flavour profiles and combinations that you did?

As I know, pear always pair with almond, it’s nice flavour combination, my pear almond tarts look not good, but everyone said that taste so good; the white chocolate combine with raspberry is excellent too, actually white chocolate can be with variety flavor.

  • What would you change and why?

I got so much valuable experience from this time; I would make some change in the future.
Make sure every product has one costing sheet, which is easy to understand the value of product, also organize clearly.
Practice drawing, a colored drawing can help you to desire the product, a nice desired drawing is a goal to working on, in particular know what will you do step by step.
Scaling exactly right amount, my mousse cake has a jelly top, I used 150 liquid to dissolved 4 jellten sheets, that’s too much, it tests like rubber.
And I also realized that between the dream and the reality is a long way to go, you find a nice picture or recipe that doesn’t mean you can do it nicely. We have to practice again and again!
















During the chocolate and the confections course, I gained weight and knowledge, I enjoying the course, I made the green tea truffles, coffee flavor caramel mous, those all my favorite things, I’m really satisfied with this course.

First of all, from theory class and presentation which I learned the cultural-historical significance of chocolate, since Mayas had a verity of used for cocoa beans and treated them with tremendous respect, the cocoa accompany with human’s civilization develop; and we know the processing form cocoa bean to chocolate.Image


For me the most familiar part is the types of chocolate, because Yan and I did the presentation of this part, during research, we are surprised with those many of different chocolates, it is beyond my imaginationSlide24


Slide29 Slide23

Secondly, we learned several concepts, the most important one is chocolate tempering, at the beginning, and we can’t get nice tempered chocolate, they are not gloss and hardness, they don’t have nice colour and solid structure, but, after practice we get the expiries of tempering, we can handle those three things: temperature, time and movement. There are two methods used in our lab for tempering chocolate, one is marble method, another one is seeding method, it is interesting, when I fist time try seeding method, I love it more than marble method, because I got perfect tempered chocolate without messy, as a lazy people, I prefer this way, you just melt the couverture to the right temperature 40-45C, then add 1/3 of small chips stir until melted, see, easy and no extra work, I’d never use marbling method, but never say never, first time I was lucky, but the good luck just once, the second time I spend lots of time to temper the chocolate in seeding method, it’s kind of dispirited, we have to check the crystallization again and again, so I go back to the marble method, I have to say, there is no easy way to go, just fellow the rule and practice.




For dipping chocolate, we need more patience, dip it one by one,when I made caramel mous, I was hurry to finish all the products, so I lost my patience, I pushed the chocolate too much, and the filling come out of the caramel mous! I will remember this mistake, next time, when I feel anxious, just stop and take a deep breath, until I can focus on my job! I hope my products have a good look and customers enjoy this sweet products with happy! So I can proud of it!


Finally, for the confection part, we made some cute and soft fruit jellies; delicious caramel mous and nougat,

We had one-day sugar class, it was really fun except burn hands part, we learned several ways to get different texture sugar show piece, when we watching instructor demo, we thought that is easy, a piece of cake, we can deal it, but our turn to hand a piece of hot sugar, it is like BBQ your hands, fortunately, our first show piece not bad,

In lots of chocolate store, they always use chocolate coating apples, strawberries etc, it looks pretty and yummy, kids love it and I really want to try .



Reflection on design and decoration






I can’t believe those beautiful cakes are made by me, I am so happy with that. For the past few weeks I was exhausted, my mother in law is suffering from cancer, when my husband go back to China to visit his mother, I have to take care two kids, everyday is rushing, that is why I enjoying the time of in the lab, when I focus on my tasks ,the piping, the decorating, I just forget everything, no kids running in the house, for me it’s pretty like Zen, it is my peace time.

Now, I can pipe shell, rosette, leaves, star, etc, I can using different types of tip to get the shapes I wanted, I get the experience of piping, I know how much power should using and Which angle can get nice shape!

  these reminder me, When I first time using piping bag, so many funny things happened, I putted so much cream in the piping bag, then the cream just quizzed out from the top of piping bag, I even didn’t know how to insert the piping tips in it, I piped flat ugly rosettes, nobody knows that is rosette, just messy cream. 


It still is a challenge to me to piping with a cone to make chocolate motifs and writing, the main problems are:

  • The chocolate is not easy to control, we have to make sure the paper cone cut nicely, The chocolate melting well, even though, bubbles in the cone, chocolate stuck inside, it happens! What can I do? Be patient! If I need ten chocolate flakes to decorate the cake
    I will make twenty more, then, choose ten perfect flakes!

  • The chocolate getting dry easily,but we putted the chocolate bowl into the bowl with warm water, so it maintain the piping!


  • Writing nicely is a goal, honestly,I am not good at writing in English, even using pen to writing on the paper,but I believe that practice make perfect!
  • The size and space of writing consistency. It is necessary before we writing on the cake, we have to write on the paper hundreds of times to ensure we can writing nicely on the cake!

  I am satisfied with my skill at these tasks; compare the beginning of my piping I improved a lot.

  To become successful with piping, I have some ideas to share:

  • Practice, of course, we all know, we don’t have enough time to practice in the lab, so tried practice at home, using the batter instant chocolate, just mix flour with batter, writing on the plastic chopping board, it’s working. Practice everywhere if you can, actually, I don’t have extra time to practice, but my dad always say that to me, which is “don’t find excuses for your fail, figure out a way toward the success, so, I practice draw picture on the paper, on the phone, on the pan etc.
  • ImageImageImage
  • Know your tools well.Image
  • Don’t shaking your hand, I have bad experience, I will shaking my hands when I drinking too much coffee or hungry, last time when I piping the chocolate writing, I can’t do it with my shaking hands.
  • Certainties know what will you do. Have an image in your head or draw a picture ready on the hand. Make sure how much big and what kinds of style will you do, that is important, next, you just do without stop.
  • Using on line resources.

    Learn from someone else, we can easily find nice picture form online, there is lots of ideas about piping, for example, last week, I make a butter cream cake, the idea comes from computer, at the beginning, that is a way to learn, when I was journalist, my editor always said that to me: if you don’t know how to write a good article, just read more newspaper, like some articles written by Pulitzer Prize winner, it helped me a lot. Even I never write an article to win the prize, but I know what a good article should be.

  • Thinking. Different events using different types of piping, for example, someone play rock and roll, maybe he doesn’t want flowers on his cake, he just wants cool stuff, so our piping should be match the theme.
  • Be confident. Everything is about attitude, trust you can do it, and writing and piping with confidence, fluently and elegantly picture will show up.

Frying reflections

Frying reflections


This week was full of oil. we fried doughnuts, tempura and French cruller, the temperature of fryer was 375°C, the oil can hurt you easily. There are some tips when I frying foods which can keep myself and coworker safe:

  1. Keep everything organization and ready to use. When I prepare to fry donuts, I will get a tray with screen on it and close to the fryer, it make sure you have time to finish your product step by step, if you hurry to looking for something you missed when your donut is done, everything will be messy. And remember using mats when you hold hot tray or equipment.
  2. Make sure the floor is clean and not slip.  While you frying, the oil always flip over, or when you take out foods from fryer, the oil drop off the floor, it happens usually, you must clean it immediately, for make sure someone else and yourself safely; even the flour or batter drop off the floor, it is dangerous too.
  3. Drop food into fryer gently.   Whatever the time is hurry or how are you busy, you have to keep your own speed, don’t hurry, throw food in fryer, the oil will spill out of it and you’ll get burn.
  4. Get more safe space. When you working front of the fryer, to make sure leave more space behind you to let someone else go through, so you won’t get crush with someone else.



If I have a busy, heavy schedule of donut production, but I don’t like my yeast donuts get too big and too much fat, I would like to do something for it:

  1. Reduce the quantity of yeast. To slow down the fermentation.
  2. Don’t over proof.
  3. Make sure the temperature of oil not too low. Low temperature will take long time to frying; the donuts will absorb too much oil.
  4. Put some of the product in the refrigerator. So the dough doesn’t become old.
  1. The proofer temperature should be low.
  2. Give the dough relax time enough.

Cake donuts can be coarse and dense:

  1. Don’t over mix the dough. Too much gluten will make the donuts tough.
  2. The dough temperature should be at room temperature.
  3. Give 15 minutes to relax the dough before frying. It can relax the gluten and give the donuts nice expansion.
  4. The proper temperature must be 375°C -385°C.


I will Discuss the health implications of different kinds of fat used in donut production, as I know, good frying oil should be good- quality, flavorless and high smoke point.

  In our lab, we using solid shortening, it is popular cause it gives the donuts less greasy, but it can’t melt in the mouth and not healthy enough.

One of my favorite donut store was CARTEMS, the donuts are expensive and yummy, they emphasize the frying oil is coconut oil; it makes me feel it is healthier than others. But not everyone likes coconut oil. Lard is comes from pork, many years ago, when Chinese new year coming, people always use lard frying food, it is easy to get and has good tasty, but doctor doesn’t suggest old people eat it daily, it causes blood disease.

  I think the healthiest oil is avocado oil, it has high smoke point, and contain so many kinds of nutrition, but it is too expensive for frying donuts.

Problems while frying:

  1. Check out by eye. Sometimes we have to learn check the donuts is done or not by eye, if the oil too hot, we can’t leave the donuts in the oil for 5 minutes as usual, when Parry said the color of donuts should be lighter, but we still fried some dark donuts, just because we thought the time is not enough.
  2. Don’t fry a lot of donuts at a time. Once, I tried put the whole tray of donuts into the fryer, it caused three problems, first is I can’t give them a nice average turn, when they get out the color not evenly, some almost burn, some still in light color; second is they all squeeze together, they are lost shape, some triangle, some heart shape, but no one is nice circle; third is they lower the temperature, increase the frying time, make the donuts absorbed too much oil.Image

For next week, I hope I’ll show my professional when I baking, care more details, do the best job.



Reflective journaling for aeration &emulsification

Reflective journaling for aeration &emulsification


[All sense of my week]

I‘ve had so much fun on our cake week, I’m sweet tooth, one of my favorite desert is cake, when I was little girl, my grandma told me, cake means happiness, happiness is sharing, she always right, when I sharing cake with my family and friends, it makes me feel like living in paradise. Otherwise, since we learning aeration and emulsification, the lab work becomes more interesting, air raising cake, and emulsification means two or more lonely, immiscible, independent cool stuff get together to be one thing! Just like science.

Before I take baking class I can’t image how difficult to make a cake, even a simple sponge cake, if you missed one step or one detail, you can’t get a sponge cake. This is a sweet job, also is a serious job too. These three concepts of cake-mixing method are we learned.

  • Creaming method

Creaming method usually for high fat cakes, they containing greater amounts of sugar and fat, first of all, we have to scale ingredients accurately, and their must be in room temperature, too cold ingredients can’t foaming well; then we use the paddle beat the butter slowly until it creamy, put sugar in it, until the mixture fluffy add liquid; one of the most important thing is scrape down the sides of the bowl, at the end, add the sifted dry ingredients in, remember one word” alternating” it means successive change from one thing to another and back again, so, alternating with the liquids is necessary. We used creaming method for yellow butter cake, chocolate butter cake.

  • Sponge method

Sponge method usually for low fat cakes, they are made with egg foam, whatever you make, first thing you need to do is scale all ingredients accurately, for sponge method, we just combine the eggs and sugar in a bowl, put bowl in hot water for warm the mixture to around 43°C, cause warm temperature gives the cake nice volume, then, pour the mixture into the mixer, whipping it at high speed, when the mixture thick fold in the sifted flour, we did this process by hand, gently fold until no dry flour in it. When everything done, you can’t leave the batter in outside so long, you’ll loss the volume of cake.

  • Angel food method

Angel food method also for low fat cakes, not like sponge cake, it just use egg whites, that’s why angel food cake shows white, airy and lightness, so people call this cake for angel food, the procedure is have scaled ingredients in room temperature, then, beat the egg whites until they foam soft peak, add in cream of tartar and salt near the beginning of the beating process, after that sift the dry ingredients and fold until they blend well, but don’t spend so long time to fold, the same reason with sponge cake, it will loss the volume of cake. Finally, deposit the mixture in pan and bake it immediately, for angel food cake we use the ungreased pan, because when the cake baked, we’ll upside down the cake for hold the shape.

The creaming method reminds me think about another creaming method for cookie, which we learned before, their procedure pretty alike, but different part is cake is moisture, it contain more water than cookie, so, we alternately add water with the flour when we make cake, we usually add all water at once when we make cookie.

There are some challenges to me, but all about details, for addressing those challenges, what can I do is pay more attention when I baking. Focus on three main field, environment, method and ingredients; I’ll try my best to familiar with every kind of product, more practice and thinking.


So far, I know something about aeration is blend air in, to rising cake and give it texture without chemical leavener. In particular is some tiny, mini, petty, puny bubble of air, they are created by whisking or beating, then make the batter of cake foaming.

There are three factors contribute to stable air cell development.

  • Correct temperatures of ingredient, if ingredient too cold is difficult to form air cells, too hot either.
  • Correct mixing speed, middle speed is fine, if in high speed, you can’t get evenly air cells, you have to low down speed to blend for several minuets to consistency the mixture.
  • Granulated sugar is perfect choice, too fine or too coarse is not good to produce air cells.

In lab, we used creaming method, two-stage method and one-stage method for high fat cakes, for low fat cake, we used sponge method, angel food method, those methods are working and successful, cause we follow the rule to do every steps, for example, when we made sponge cake, we whipping eggs and sugar, the mixture had correct temperatures which around 38°C, at beginning, we used high speed, the final stage we low down the speed to keep air cells.

[Cake type]

For this week we learned so many different types of cake, they belong to two big parts:

  • High fat cakes: yellow butter cake, chocolate butter cake,
  • Low fat or egg foam cakes: yellow sponge cake, chocolate sponge cake, angle food cake, jelly roll sponge, chocolate jelly roll sponge.

From make those cakes by hands I understand the theory of aeration and emulsification intensively.

Especially making angel food cake, the theory ask for clean egg whites and mixing bowl, no any fat contain, if not, it won’t foaming, so, we treat angel food cake carefully to make sure it successful.

Certainly, different type cake, I use different method, it depend on what is I making.

For high fat cakes, we use:

  • Creaming method
  • Two-stage method
  • One-stage method

For low fat or egg foam cakes, we use:

  • Sponge method
  • Angel food method
  • Chiffon method

I am so exciting to look forward to next week, way to go!!!









reflective journaling for lamination

Reflective journaling for lamination


For lamination course, I have to say it’s easier than I thought, thanks to our super powerful sheeter!! (Even it is not easy to control usually) everyone knows the dough always shrink or sticky, it’s hard to working on it by rolling pin. The sheeter saved lots of time. What did I see/ hear/ smell? Of course, the answer is Butter! Butter! Butter! Lamination is the process of alternating layers of dough and butter when making pastry, it means dough- butter- dough- butter –dough- butter~~~~~~~~they form the layers, called lamination.

We learned 3concepts about lamination dough, there are puff dough, croissant dough and Danish dough. They are very tricky, look similar, if you are not a professional baker, you even can’t find they are different. I’m professional, so I can explain what’s different between those 3dough. Puff dough has no yeast; using four- fold method for rolling in. puff pastry rises when water in dough evaporates into steam, expanding into gaps between dough layers. Croissant dough and Danish dough has contain yeast, they using three-fold. But Danish dough is richer than croissant dough, (just like Bill Gates and me, we are the same human being, but he is richer than me). After we got the method of handling the dough down, we basically just need good time organization and patience for lamination dough, give the dough and butter enough time to chill and rest. Be patience and be careful.

We’ve taken baking class for half year, we know basic function of most ingredients, those knowledge can help us understand theory of baking well, if I know what kind of ingredients we used in my recipe, I just know what is going on with the dough, I always trying to make connection with something we learned before, for example, we learned fermentation dough, so we know how dose yeast working, we are familiar with scone, so we know butter can rise dough without yeast, and so on. Otherwise, baking with thinking, except technical problems, just using horse sense to understand it. As we know, butter is the preferred fat for lamination dough, cause it gives nice flavor and high qualities.

What surprised me? Before I taking baking program, my one of favorite breakfast was croissant with jam. Since I know there is a hell lot of butter in this, I just worried about calories, this is dialectic life, yummy foods always with fat, maybe, once in a while it won’t hurt me much : ) just enjoy life.

The challenge was temperature control, if the dough and butter are not cold enough or not consistent, it will difficult to sheet and the butter will spill out the dough; if the proofer temperature is too high or oven temperature too low, also the butter will run out the product, what can I avoid these problems, just pay more attention with my products, make sure the exactly right temperature should be. For the next week, I hope we can practice more by own and figure out some detail questions and try our best to make everything is perfect.

Dough handling

For lamination dough, one of problem is butter (fat) makes dough harder to handle, the butter block and the dough should be consistency cold, but the butter neither too soft nor too hard. If the fat is too soft, it can ooze out of the dough or the dough will absorb it and prevent any layering from occurring in the final product. If the fat is too hard, it will be broken into small pieces during the rolling out process and create tears in the dough with uneven layering of fat. Otherwise, we can add flour to butter for absorb water in butter.

Proofing and baking

  The proofer temperatures should not too high, it will melt the butter, The baking temperatures should be 200-220°C, for puff dough, the cooler temperatures can’t create the layers well, too high temperatures will set the crust too quickly, but soggy inside.

Properly proof and bake frozen croissants and Danish is defrost first, then punch out some air, the proofer temperature has to be low, to prevent the butter from melting, then give them time to fermentation. For puff dough proofing has to be low, and the oven temperature should be high!

lastly, I made a picture to show how much I learned about lamination dough!


reflective journaling for fermentation (reflection on weeks)(fermentation)(shaping and moulding techniques)


Since we learned fermentation course, I’ve set up the Beatles song “ Oh, loaf is all I knead” as my alarm clock, it shows how much I love bread class. We learned a lot about fermentation, it is so interesting, it likes science, from this course we understand the basic baking principles, lean and rich yeast dough; artisan bread, we can smell the sour of the dough, watch the rising of the dough, and taste those different breads. I had so much fun.

I learned three basic methods of mixing dough.

  • Straight dough method
  • Modified straight dough method
  • Sponge method

[1] Straight dough method is simplest form, it called all in method, just combine all ingredients in the mixing bowl and mix, for yeast evenly distributed in the dough, it is therefore safer to mix the yeast separately with water.

  • Soften the yeast in the water. Ideal temperature is 26c
  • Combine the remaining ingredients, in the mixing bowl. Add the dissolved yeast.
  • Mix to a smooth, developed dough (use window test).

[2] Modified straight dough method usually for rich sweet dough, the straight dough method is modified to ensure even distribution of fat and sugar.

  • Soften the yeast in part of the liquid, using a separate container.
  • Combine the fat, sugar, salt and flavorings and mix until well combined, but do not whip until light.
  • Add the eggs gradually, as fast as they are absorbed.
  • Add the flour and yeast. Mix to a smooth dough.

[3] Sponge method which allows yeast to speedily and fully ferment and activate with part of the flour and water in the recipe and later incorporated with the remainder of the ingredients. I feel this method offers a better texture, rise and taste for very rich or heavy yeast dough recipes compared to the straight dough method. Sponge dough is prepared in two stages. This procedure gives the yeast action a head start.

  •   Combine the liquid, yeast and part of the flour. Mix into a thick batter or soft dough. Let ferment until double in bulk.
  • Punch down and add the rest of the flour and the remaining ingredients. Mix to a uniform, smooth dough.

Everything is new for me. But the most interesting and make me surprised is the history of sour dough (our kitty) Since we made kitty I know which sourdough is the oldest and most original form of leavened bread. The oldest recorded use of sourdough is from the ancient Egyptian civilizations. It was probably discovered as most things are by accident. I wonder maybe there was a super lazy wife made that accident, then use the sourdough baked delicious bread, which they’ve never ever eaten it before. If you simply mix any ground up grain with a liquid such as water or milk and let it sit in the open air at room temperature, wild yeasts in the air will settle in the mix, eat the natural sugars and convert them into lactic acids which give it a sour flavor. They also give off alcohol and carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide is what will cause the bread to rise. When worked into bread dough, the bubbles get trapped into the structure of the bread, and that is the little holes that you see. When I check the history of sourdough, I found the first recorded civilization we know about that used sourdough was the Egyptians around 1500BC. That really surprised me.

Of course, there were challenges for me; one of challenge was funny, I was fear of rack oven cause I’ve watch a horror movie about that, as a baker, how can I say I’m scared of rack oven? Someone is acrophobia, someone is bacteriophobia, and I am rackovenphobia, but it was not a big problem, I figured out, when I using rack oven, I tried focus on my work, don’t thinking something else, and take a deep breath, practice more, so I don’t have fear any more. Another challenge was the water temperature; we need accurately right water temperature for melt yeast, at the beginning, I spend so many time for measure it, but now I can easily testing water temp with finger, then use thermometer to make sure it is right or not.


As we know, without fermentation by yeast, a living and natural product, we could not obtain the equivalent of bread. Fermentation is the process by which yeast acts on the sugars and starches in the dough to produce carbon dioxide gas and alcohol. This release of gas produces the leavening action in yeast products. The alcohol evaporates completely during and immediately after baking.

There is three yeast forms: fresh yeast, active dry yeast, and instant dry yeast. The dosage of yeast for bread making, the amount of yeast used is between 2 and 5 kilos of compressed yeast for 100kilos of flour. In practice, this proportion varies effectively according to the baking process and the temperature of the bakery. In 100 grams of flour, 1 to 10 million micro organisms live among which only 30,000 are the so-called wild yeasts. A standard amount of 2.5 grams of baker’s yeast for 100g of flour provides 25 billion yeast cells. This is the proof that baker’s yeast is predominant in the bakery fermentation, fermentation begins as soon as the yeast is in contact with the mixture of water and flour. During the bulk fermentation, we let the dough rise for a first time, then the physical properties of the dough extensibility and elasticity are modified, thus completing the kneading action. This is an important stage on which depends the final quality of the bread: external and internal characteristics, taste and aroma. Before molding the dough requires some rest so that the dough pieces may relax, in order to recover some extensibility. Temperature is so important for yeast fermentation. Yeast will ferment at any temperature between 1-40°C, if the temperature is too low, fermentation will be slow and acidity will be produced, on the other hand, a high temperature promotes excessively rapid fermentation and the development of “off” flavors. So, most production breads are fermented at a temperature of about 25-27°C. at 60°C, yeast is killed, fermentation stop.

There is three main factors contribute to the rate of fermentation: Fermentation time, temperature and specific ingredients in dough formulation.

  • Fermentation time. This factor determines the amount of time yeast gets to act on the sugars present in the ferment, whether it is a sponge, brew, or straight dough. While the rate of fermentation declines with time at a constant temperature, it does not completely stop. However, the longer the fermentation time, the higher the degree of fermentation.
  • Fermentation temperature. Like any other living cell, the various enzymatic activities of the yeast cell are closely tied to the temperature of the environment. Therefore, higher ferment temp increase yeast activity.
  • Specific ingredients in dough formulation. Generally, stiffer dough takes longer to ferment as compared to slacker ones. With additional water, the soluble solids are diluted, and the osmotic pressure on the yeast cells is reduced. In other side, the presence of high concentrations of sugar and salt is retarded the yeast fermentation.


For me to manage the fermentation rate of my dough, it depends what condition it is, if it necessary to slow down my dough’s rate of rising, I usually bring dough from the mixer at a colder temperature, cause the colder the dough, the slower the rate of fermentation. If it is bulk dough, what can I do is divide it into smaller pieces, the larger a piece of dough is, the longer it takes to cool down or warm up. However if my dough is not rising fast enough, I will keep the dough at warmer temperature for a longer time. For example, use warmer water for dough mixing, to create the quickest rate of fermentation, let the dough bench rest for a longer time before putting it into the cooler, the longer dough is at room temperature, the faster is fermentation. Otherwise, longer proofer can help rising too.

(Shaping and moulding techniques)

Part of the craftsmanship in making bread is the attractive shapes and styles of a wide array of breads, from large loaves, small buns and everything in between. During bread class, we learned a range of dough to be able to made most bread shapes. We learned artisan breads, baguette Cuban bread, pan bread rolls and sourdough bread.

 For baguette. Press the dough with the heel of your palm into a rectangle roughly 20-25cm or 8-10 inches long. Fold this dough in half (width-wise) and press to seal. Fold again in half to make a long loaf. Find the seam and pinch it shut if it seems open.

Roll out the dough. Using palms, start at the middle and roll the dough outwards. The bread should end up a little fatter in the middle and thinner at the ends. In practice, do not roll out a loaf bigger than you can bake.

Make the loaf. Turn the cylinder of dough over and pinch the seam and gently roll with your hands from the middle out to make a shorter and fatter loaf. To make a Vienna loaf shape, the bread should be noticeably fatter in the middle and this is done using very light pressure applied to the ends of a round loaf so it makes an oval shape

For round loafs. Gather the dough and place hand to the side of the dough, palm facing the dough. Press the side of the ball with the edge of hand and press down, pushing it forward. The dough should rotate as we do this.

Make a plait with the bread. This is just like plaiting hair, otherwise we may look at the three portions as a simple pattern, folding one strand over another: 1 over 3, 3 over 2, 2 over 6, and so on until you run out of dough.

What other shaping techniques do I want to learn? I think is croissant shaped rolls. May be we are going to learn it later, I am looking forward to it.