Something that I hear time and time again in Bristol Blog Land is how awesome bloggers are to one another. I consider myself so lucky to have been welcomed into this community and for how many awesome women I have met, and how many wonderful opportunities I have had because of my little blog. Last week, I had an absolute dream of a day when I was invited to go to one of Severn Bites‘s bread courses. Not only do I get to learn a new skill (and give my Kitchen Aid a proper job to do!) but I got the chance to spend the day in the company of some really inspiring women. Doing the course with me were Leila, Natacha and Karis.
Nothing gets the day off to a good start more than a road trip and some mini-eggs, and thus fortified, off we went to Danielle’s house. You need a car to get to Danielle’s, but it’s a quick and easy drive, through some lovely countryside for a good chunk of the journey.
After welcomes, homemade soup and handwashing, we were ready to get down to business. Danielle told us about her epic five month training in France, explained the format of the day, and told us about the type of dough we would be using and making.
Viennoise dough can be used for a variety of sweet and savoury treats. We learnt to make the basic dough, and then how to turn that dough into burger buns, savoury whirls, little baguettes, hot cross buns and a chocolate studded pull-apart loaf. Danielle explained to us about working with ingredient percentages rather than weights, which is a system that’ll be familiar to you if you ever bake any recipes which use cups rather than grams or ounces.
We learnt a variety of shaping skills, including rolling the dough by hand into bun shapes. It’s a little tricky to master as the dough is quite sticky. It turns out that I have very warm hands, and I found the chilled dough much easier to work with, so I’ll know to chill my dough when I try the recipes at home.
The workshop lasts about four hours, and while it’s packed with activity and information, it doesn’t feel overwhelming, even for a complete beginner. I won’t give away too many specifics as I want you to go to Danielle’s and do the course yourself. It’s absolutely wonderful, and I loved doing it.
Thanks so much to Danielle for having us!
Have a look below to check out what we made.
Here’s the savoury whirls. I was put in charge of spreading the pesto, which as you can imagine is key to the success of the bake…
The one near the front is my special one. You can tell because it’s slathered in chilli paste!
|Here are our dainty little hot cross buns, pre-crosses. Danielle makes her own dried peel, which is much nicer than anything you can buy in a shop!|
|Here is Danielle showing us how to wrap up our little baguettes in what I’m going to call the ‘bread blanket’. It’s a special linen cloth that’s shipped over from France.|
|The pull apart bread fresh out of the oven. Check out that gorgeous colour! You can just about see the different sections of the loaf, each made from separate buns which are individually shaped, then nestled together in the tin.|
|Here’s the whirls fresh from the oven. I think these were my favourite of all the items we made.|
|The little baguettes. They’re not actually baguettes, strictly speaking, but close enough. Mine’s the little fat one, obviously.|
|The burger buns. These were so tasty! I had mine for my lunch the next day with some cheese and pickle in and it was wonderful.|